Hotel chains sign charter to garner UK business

Starwood Hotels, Corinthia, Moevenpick, Kempinski, Hampshire Hospitality, Grand City Hotels and Maritim join the list of global hotel chains to sign up the HBAA International Charter.

The HBAA International Charter aims to drive awareness amongst overseas hotels and venues of how to deal with UK agencies and thereby benefit from the association’s agency buying power, which exceeds £2.3bn per annum.

In adhering to the HBAA International Charter, Starwood Hotels, Corinthia, Moevenpick, Hampshire Hospitality, Kempinski, Grand City Hotels and Maritim will benefit from the association’s framework for best practice under which agents and venues should conduct their business. The Charter covers the key elements involved in securing international meetings and events, from enquiry response times and commission levels to payment terms.

James Farrow, senior vice president sales of Corinthia Hotels, said: “We are delighted to partner the HBAA in this initiative. With a number of large event hotels in key European destinations such as Budapest, Lisbon and Prague, it enables us not only to raise our profile in the UK – which is a key feeder market for us – but also our credibility to HBAA members knowing that when they book a Corinthia hotel they will be dealt with fairly and consistently across our portfolio of hotels. This in turn leads to a better experience for their clients and hopefully repeat business for us all.”

Sven Doliwa, vice president commercial, Grand City Hotels & Resorts, commented: “As one of the leading associations representing the MICE sector, Grand City Hotels is delighted to support this initiative by the HBAA, which also mirrors Grand City Hotels’ own mission to provide ‘best in sector’ quality and service to guests and trade partners from both the MICE and Leisure sectors.”

Céline Mills, regional director of sales UK, Hampshire Hotels, said: “Hampshire Hotels is proud to announce the cooperation with HBAA International Charter. With 90 hotels in The Netherlands, Belgium and Western Germany, both in bustling cities as in the country, Hampshire Hotels is excited to make use of the international network of HBAA International Charter.  HBAA is an important ‘feeder’ in our market and we are expecting to welcome many future businesses in our hotels. Hampshire Hotels is looking forward to a successful cooperation.”

Evert Schuele, regional director of sales, North-West Europe, commented: “As the largest operator of luxury hotels in the industry, it is a natural fit for Starwood to partner with the HBAA on this initiative. We believe that the International Charter will not only facilitate relationships between venues and agencies, but will also drive business to our properties in the long-term. This is the beginning of an exciting partnership!”

Steve Ockerby, International Projects Chair of the HBAA, said: “We are delighted with the response from overseas properties looking to become signatories to the International Charter. With a searchable database about to be made available to HBAA agents, it is an exciting time for both agents and venues to be part of this initiative.”

Peter Ducker, Executive Director of the association, and Steve Ockerby, International Projects Chair of the HBAA, are hosting two of IMEX’s Lightning Learning Labs sessions under the titles: ‘How to Win Your Share of the UK Outbound Market’ and ‘Increasing your Inbound Conference Business from the UK Agency Market’. The sessions will run at 10:30am and 15.00pm on Wednesday 23rd May and just at 10.30am on Thursday 24th May.

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Notes to editors:

  • The Hotel Booking Agents Association (HBAA) was formed in 1997 and now consists of 86 agents and 209 venue members.
  • Member agents are specialists in making hotel accommodation, conference and event reservations as their core business.
  • Member venues are comprised of the leading hotel chains, training centres and independent hotels and venues.
  • The HBAA comprises a committee of 12 industry figureheads who oversee separate committees including: technology, partnerships, memberships, marketing & PR, events and education.
  • Twitter: @HBAA2012
  • http://www.hbaa.org.uk