Choice Hotels Asia-Pac has announced another successful year and laid the foundations for the future at its annual conference held on the Gold Coast last week.
Attended by over 270 franchisees, suppliers and partners from Australia, New Zealand, Japan and the United States, the event was themed ‘Orchestrating the Future’ and included an agenda that was created to challenge and inspire all attendees to think about the opportunities the future holds.
Trent Fraser, Choice Hotels Asia-Pac Chief Executive Officer, was extremely pleased with the event.
“We’re proud to host this event and it’s the best attendance we’ve had in many years. The feedback we’ve had from all attendees has been overwhelmingly very positive,” Fraser said.
The conference kicked off with a 40 piece orchestra, playing Mozart’s Symphony No. 25, before launching the new direction and positioning of the brand. The company then celebrated key business highlights including, a 15% increase in Choice’s business delivery across the region, a 30 per cent growth in inbound business and the addition of over 100,000 new Choice Privileges members to the company’s loyalty program.
“We’ve experienced strong business growth this year and it’s a real reflection on our strength in the marketplace that we have been able to keep this growth consistent,” Fraser said.
The event included a number of keynote speeches from the Thank You Group Co-Founder and Managing Director and 2014 Australian of the Year, Daniel Flynn, former Innovationist at Google, Justin Baird, and Mars One Astronaut Candidate, Dianne McGrath.
Additionally Choice Hotels reflected on the progress of developments within the major Greater China region, and highlighted how the company is innovating and adapting its distribution model to ensure this region continues to deliver strong bookings to all properties.
The company has also focused on its charitable efforts, presenting not-for-profit group Kids Under Cover with a donation of $55,000 that will help to prevent youth homelessness. It was also announced that over $15,000 was recently raised by New Zealand franchisees for Cystic Fibrosis NZ.
The conference also celebrated outstanding achievements within the group, with the announcement of the Franchisee of the Year award winners across each of the five brands.
The 2015 Franchisee of the Year award winners included:
– Ascend Hotel Collection: Oceans Resort, an Ascend Hotel Collection member, Hervey Bay, QLD
– Clarion: Clarion Hotel City Park Grand, Launceston, TAS
– Quality: Quality Hotel Powerhouse Tamworth, NSW and Quality Hotel Taylors Lakes, VIC (joint winners)
– Comfort: Comfort Inn and Suites Robertson Gardens, Brisbane, QLD
– Econo Lodge: Econo Lodge Moree Spa Motor Inn, NSW
Fraser spoke about the importance of the awards ceremony in recognising the hard work of the individual franchisees.
“Our annual awards ceremony gives us a chance to recognise the dedication and hard-work of all of our Choice Hotels franchisees. The awards recognise those franchisees that have displayed excellence over the past year and for the first time we have two award winners from the Quality brand,” he said.
“Each hotel that has been honoured at tonight’s ceremony has shown outstanding service to its guests and commitment to Choice Hotels. We are pleased to extend our gratitude and acknowledgement of their hard work,” Fraser said.