Accor welcomed more than 400 of its general managers and senior leaders from Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, French Polynesia, and across the world to its first ever Pacific leaders conference in Sydney last week.

The Empowered conference, held at Sydney’s International Convention Centre, included presentations, panel discussions, workshops and tradeshows aimed at extending Accor’s business performance in the Pacific region.

“Our aim of the two-day conference was to bring our senior leaders and key stakeholders together to develop a shared understanding of our business and to hear directly from our business leaders as they discuss Accor’s vision for the future of hospitality,” said Accor Pacific CEO for the Premium, Midscale and Economy division, Sarah Derry.

“Empowerment is a key value at Accor, and we believe that by empowering our people, we can truly transform and lead the hospitality industry. We have no doubt that the insights and ideas shared at this conference will have a lasting impact on all of us, and we are excited to see the positive change that will come from it.”

Key leaders from within the business and the wider industry spoke at the conference including Accor’s Group Deputy CEO and Premium, Midscale & Economy Division CEO, Jean-Jacques Morin; Tourism Australia Managing Director, Phillipa Harrison; Accor Global Chief Commercial Officer for the Premium, Midscale & Economy Division, Karelle Lamouche; and Accor Global Chief Talent & Culture Officer, Steven Daines.

Among the top themes of the conference were people, loyalty, guest experience and sustainability.

A First Nations panel hosted by Sarah Derry discussed topics including cultural capability, team member engagement, and the importance of First Nations partners, while a supplier village curated by Accor’s procurement team showcased innovations from the group’s partners.

A Gala Dinner and Pacific Awards ceremony was held on Tuesday July 11 to recognise key performers across the Group.

Nine award categories were presented on the night including Hotel of the Year which was awarded to Mövenpick Hotel Wellington.

Speaking at the event, French Ambassador to Australia, His Excellency Ambassador Jean-Pierre Thebault, discussed the powerful partnership between Australia and France and updated attendees on the 2024 Olympics in Paris, before Australian Idol star Paulini took to the stage.

The conference closed with an evening of sport at Accor Stadium where delegates were invited to watch State of Origin III.