This year, the XVI National Congress of the Association of Hotel Directors of Portugal took place between 15 and 16 October, at the University of Évora. With the theme, “The Future Begins Now”, the congress debated the most current topics in the sector.
The opening of the congress was conducted by Raúl Ribeiro Ferreira, president of the ADHP management, who, during his opening speech, highlighted the recognition and skills of all professionals in the tourism sector, namely those of the new generation.
The first panel addressed issues inherent to human resources management and training, as well as the necessary adaptation of organizational culture in a world dominated by technology. Then, in the second and last panel of the day, topics such as the bet on innovation in hospitality, as well as the new technological features of the sector were discussed.
The second day of the conference had the importance of training and new ways of thinking as the theme of the first panel. The second, on the other hand, dealt with one of the key themes of today, sustainability – in this case, sustainability applied to the hotel industry and the environmental certification of regions and hotels. In the last panel of the morning, the digital transformation and the adjustment of the business model to technological advances were discussed by the stakeholders.
During the afternoon the situation of the events was discussed, one of the areas most affected by the pandemic, which continues to demand new solutions and a constant adaptation of professionals and companies. The XVI ADHP Congress ended with a balance conversation, focusing on the constant restructuring experienced by the sector in order to achieve the long-awaited recovery.
To close the congress, Raul Ribeiro Ferreira mentioned a set of topics, concerns and challenges addressed to government officials and professionals in the sector.
Once again, the importance of holding a face-to-face congress and the participation of all those who contributed to it was emphasized: a moment of fundamental sharing that had been expected for months. The urgency of implementing sustainability practices in the hospitality industry was also mentioned, as was the urgent appreciation of human resources, in order to retain national talent. The theme of regularizing the career of a hotel director was again mentioned as a necessity, in an appeal to the Secretary of State.
The Secretary of State for Tourism, Rita Marques, who sent a message of encouragement to professionals and the sector, recalled the unique characteristics of our country as a destination and reinforced the importance of a joint effort for recovery and the search for a better tourist. He ended by quoting the theme of the congress, which he emphatically completed: “The future starts now, but it depends on everyone!”.
Within the scope of the Congress, there was also a dinner at the Hotel Évora, on the 15th, for the delivery of the “XÉNIOS 2019” – Awards for Excellence in Hospitality, which annually highlights the best professionals in the sector.
List of winners:
- Hotel Director: Carlos Alves, Vila Galé Group
- Accommodation Director: Susana Querido de Figueiredo, Hotel D. Pedro Lisboa
- F&B Director: Miguel Maugi Santos, Vila Galé Hotels
- Commercial, Marketing & Sales Director: Ricardo Barreto, Convento do Espinheiro
- Young Hotel Director: Vera Sequeira, Pestana CR7 Funchal
- Best Human Potential Manager: João Vieira, Corinthia Hotel Lisbon
- Outsourcing Company/Business Partner: Grupo GM – Exclusive Amenities.
In addition to the awards given in the seven categories, the Regional Merit Award was given to Restaurante Fialho, the Tourist Merit Award to António Ceia da Silva and the Career Award to Fernando Maia.