AA CEO, Michael Johnson speaking at AHICE 2023

Popular hotel industry figure and CEO of the nation’s peak accommodation industry body, Accommodation Australia, Michael Johnson, has announced his retirement, effective July 31, 2024.

Johnson spent four years as national and NSW head of Tourism Accommodation Australia (TAA) before being appointed CEO of Accommodation Australia in January 2023.

He played a significant role in the amalgamation of TAA and the Accommodation Association of Australia, with the associations uniting as one on July 1, 2023, and now representing more than 1400 accommodation hotels nationwide.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my time representing the industry and feel humbled to have led Accommodation Australia after achieving amalgamation last year,” said Johnson.

“After 45 years in the industry, it is time to hand over the reins and enjoy more time with family and friends.”’

During his 45-year career, Johnson spent 14 years with Southern Pacific Hotel Corporation before joining Totally Tourism, taking responsibility for managing its many New Zealand-based tourism companies.

Johnson also served as a general manager with Pan Pacific Hotels Group and Amora Hotels for several years and spent some time working with Oscars Hotels as a hotel development consultant.

During his time as CEO of Accommodation Australia, Johnson led the charge on key issues affecting the hotel industry, including labour and skills shortages which plagued the industry post pandemic.

“We now have more international students than pre-pandemic, our Working Holiday Makers numbers are more than 160,000 and the Free Trade Agreement with the UK comes into play July 1, 2024,” Johnson told HM in February.

Taking to the stage at AHICE Asia Pacific in May 2024, Johnson outlined the key objectives of the association for the year ahead, including a focus on engaging with government on a migration strategy that would expand Australia’s pool of skilled hospitality professionals.

In a statement released by Accommodation Australia on Monday, Chair David Mansfield thanked Johnson for his dedicated service to the industry association.

“Michael will be sadly missed by his team and the many stakeholders he works closely with,” said Mansfield.

“He has significantly contributed to Accommodation Australia and the industry more broadly over many years.”