On Saturday more than 200 delegates attended the 5th Annual
Orion Congress at Atlantis, The Palm Jumeirah, which commenced with the
time-honoured handing over of the Waka (a traditional New Zealand Maori wooden boat) by Mr Fritz Gubler, Chairman
Orion Hotel Schools to Professor Peter Jones, the Master of Ceremonies for the day, as a symbol of best wishes and success for the Congress. The Congress, which
focused on the future of tourism showcased topics including the current global economic crisis and the anticipated effects on tourism
Orion Congress attracted a bevy of the tourism sector’s acclaimed speakers including Mr Max Hitchins, also known as the Hospitality
Doctor, Virgin Galactic Astronaut Brian Binnie, international academics and local hoteliers.
The one day Congress which addressed What’s Next in Marketing, Operations and Resourcing, provided attendees with insights into the growth
and future prospects for tourism as we approach 2020.
Visiting Dubai specifically to attend the Congress, Mr Richard Rosebery, Founder of Select Hotels and Resorts and Director of The Profit Motif,
Sydney Australia outlined global trends and the future of travel and hotel marketing, offering new perspectives and in some ways offering a
wake-up call to hoteliers who continue to use traditional methods.
Max Hitchins also known as the Hospitality Doctor who was easily recognised by the bright red stethoscope around his neck, offered a
fascinating presentation about space age marketing tools as well as what he referred to as Cloud Computing for futuristic collaborative
Planting the seed of ideas in the minds of all who attended was Professor Keith Johnson, a leading academic in the field of Tourism &
Hospitality at Leeds Metropolitan University, UK who talked about concepts which he concluded will develop and influence the future of the
“Hot on the lips of most hoteliers that I come into contact with here in the UAE, is the challenge of
recruitment,” said Mr Fritz Gubler, Chairman Orion Hotel Schools.
“Hearing about the Atlantis quest for 4,000 plus employees as a case study as well as insights from the world’s leading educators and
academics about the future outlook was invaluable for General Managers and Human Resources professionals.”
The event concluded with the handing back of the Waka to Mr Fritz Gubler who
announced the venue for the 2009
Orion Congress as Montreux, Switzerland.
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