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Global Lodging Forum 2015: promote the destination to encourage hotel development?

Promotion, organization, stimulation, is the destination the right size to promote the evolution of the hotel industry? To try to clarify the matter four tourism sector professionals discuss projects they have implemented to develop the appeal of a territory with respect to hospitality professionals.

Karine Bidart, Directrice générale adjointe, Paris & Co:

"Paris&Co, an agency for economic development and innovation in Paris, is looking for foreign investors, to promote the city internationally and the development of the ecosystem in the Ile de France through the incubation of innovative startups, experimentation, events organization, the connection of startups and major accounts. It works closely with Paris's Tourist Office to assist international groups in the tourism and hospitality. Within the fierce competition between major international cities to attract investors, we assist them with the difficulties of installation, administrative tasks, recruitment of collaborators, search for sites."

"The Paris Tourism Office has a goal to welcome and inform visitors, to promote the destination Paris  internationally and assist tourism professionals. In terms of tourism, the city's priorities focus on improving the quality of reception and services, to valorize Paris, and make it a city that develops sustainable tourism."

"In the hotel sector, the City of Paris will encourage the diversity of the supply. Paris&Co directs the prospection of hotel investors towards 2-3 stars and encourages innovative projects, such as the new youth hostel concept by the British group Generator. The city Launched a hotel plan to build 7,000 rooms in Paris by 2020 and 20,000 all be built throughout Greater Paris. And Paris stands out in terms of innovative subjects, with the call for innovative urban projects Réinventer Paris, a worldwide compteition for urban creation that includes many candidates for hotel groups, or the launch of Welcome City Lab, the first nursery in the world focussing on tourism. Major events offer Paris a formidable opportunity: with 40% professional visitors and 400 exhibitions in 2013, Paris is also the worldwide capital of business tourism."

Camille Fumanal-Ulysse, Project Manager - Hostel and Leisure Business, Grand Lyon La Métropole:

"In Lyon, we split the strategies between supply and demand. In terms of supply, the Métropole du Grand Lyon focuses on hosting and supporting businesses, local professionals and their projects. A result of an economic territorial ruling, OnlyLyon was created to develop Lyon, in terms of both business and leisure."

"Our first Schéma de développement de l'hébergement touristique (SDHT) dates from 2002. Today we are integrating hotel syndicates and professionals in a consideration of the sector's trends while taking into consideration the performances and quality of existing hotels. We work with the convention bureaus, hosting hotel syndicates and are revising the strategy together. we have a local vision in the global interest of the destination Lyon. Our hotel supply grew by 17% in three years, to reach 17,500 rooms. And the Hôtel-Dieu should open between 2017 and 2018. Lyon is the number two destination in France but the goal is to make it climb on the international scene. Growing the hotel supply is not an end in and of itself."

"Even if it is necessary to book a hotel room a year in advance for the Festival of light when the occupancy rate reaches 100%, what is important is not so much the peaks and slumps in activity as analysis of structural results obtained by hoteliers. During major events, it is necessary to realize that the presence of AirBnB also makes it possible to satisfy and and absorb the high demand. We are also working on the professionalization  of accommodations with hotelier training in reception, promoting the city and selling the Lyon City Card.

Isabelle Gainche, Sales and Marketing Manager, Ville Cannes:

"In Cannes, we are organized through a DSP (Délégation de Service Publique) through the Semec (Société d'économie mixte des événements cannois). The goal of the latter is to develop business and leisure tourism and improve revenues from the Palais des festivals et des congrès by working on events. We are connected to hoteliers through a marketing committee organized every two months. It manages requests for the destination, the quest for business clients and we try to structure the of supply. Hoteliers are consulted because it is essential to communicate in distribution development. Moreover, the board of administration of the Semec is led by three hotel groups."

"Our hotel inventory is enough for a city of volume 70,000 with 130 hotels (including six 5 star) and 8000 rooms. There will be 9,000 in the next three years. We reached maturation in terms of number of rooms. New brands will replace intendant hotels (ex: Okko Hotels will arrive in 2016). Our goal is to build a supply that includes all types of accommodations in order to target a variety of clientele. We are attempting a re-balancing since not all hotels have the same thinking in mind in terms of room rates. While our biggest event represents 22,000 reservations, while in July and August occupancy rates and average daily rates spike. Winter is more difficult. Thus pressure is put on hoteliers so that they promote the destination. Seaside and mountain destinations must and shed their palm-tree swimsuit cliché. The territory must be looked at as a whole, including the city's history and that of the island that the city is not we'll enough aware off? We are organizing eductours so that hoteliers better sell the destination;

Jean-Louis Laville, Directeur du CRT Normandie:

"At the CRT Normandie, our core business is tourism promotion. We work with networks, families; we develop around clubs such as "Les Hôtels de Charme de Normandie", cofinanced by hoteliers. To accelerate tourism development, we are taking advantage of contracts with destinations implemented in a coorperation between the government and Atout France. They connect us to players in transportation, accommodations, F&B and cultural activities. They offer a new space where voluntarism pays for the destination. Of the eleven contracts signed in 2014, four are located in Normandy: "Tourisme de mémoire en Normandie", "Baie du Mont St Michel", "Grand Ouest sur le marché britannique" (with Brittany and the Loire regions) and "Destination Impressionnisme" (with the OPParis-Parison region)."

"In terms of territory we must present the full range in terms of price, comfort, distribution, within a level of excellence and quality. Hoteliers invest enormously in the region. They have been following a growth dynamic for three years. The profession is very high quality; thus there was no abuse during the major events last year: Equestrian Games and 70th Anniversary of the Invasion of Normandy). While hoteliers are very strong in the area of hosting, we can do better in terms of appeal. transporters such as Brittany Ferries began to promote the destination. I am not sure that in the hotel industry we are doing the  same. that we are promoting a destination in relationship to the property . Whence the interest in building through destination contracts".


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