Michael Issenberg, Chairman and CEO AccorHotels Asia Pacific, has been awarded the Ordre National du Mérite from the French Government, one of the highest civilian orders possible, for his tireless work in forging links between France and the world.
This award goes to only a handful of non-French-citizens each year and is nominated by the President for those who best exemplify the Gallic spirit and he joins an esteemed group of National Order recipients who have been recognised for their service to France including the likes ofJacques Cousteau, Marcel Marceu, King Juan Carlos I of Spain and Queen Aishwarya of Nepal.
The award came just days after he was named Asia Pacific Hotelier of the Year at the 2015 HM Awards.
For more than two decades, Issenberg has showcased French hospitality throughout Asia Pacific and has forged powerful links between France and the region as the APAC head of France’s leading hotel group, AccorHotels.
Over the years he has played a part in bringing French tourism icons to the region including French chefs, artists, sports people and business leaders and has supported numerous French trade missions and events.
“I am delighted and honoured to receive this prestigious award from the French government and will wear the medal with great pride,” Issenberg said.
“The French are renowned the world over for outstanding gastronomy, arts and fashion, and most importantly the French ‘joi de vivre’ and I am proud that AccorHotels plays a part in bringing these traditions to Asia Pacific and the world.
“To have this award come just days after being selected as APAC Hotelier of the Year at the HM Awards is a double honour and has been a very humbling experience for me.”
The award was presented at the Pullman Sydney Quay Grand hotel in partnership with Atout France, the French tourism development agency.
“The achievements of AccorHotels in Australia and Asia have directly benefited the reputation of France by demonstrating the French standards for high quality hospitality, innovation and savoir faire,” said the French Ambassador to Australia, His Excellency Christophe Lecourtier.
“Michael can take great pride in how AccorHotels has helped develop Australian tourism while also promoting French excellence.”