Fox – sly.  Trots – left-leaning (Trotsky) plus its more insalubrious meaning. 

Foxtrots – leading the industry in a dance.

December 17 2011

Soundbites. Hiran Cooray, Jean-Gabriel Peres, Kurt Ritter, Jonathan Worsley.


OME soundbites from trade leaders: Hiran Cooray, PATA chairman; Jean-Gabriel Peres, Movenpick; Kurt Ritter, Rezidor; Jonathan Worsley, Bench Events.

[] Hiran Cooray, PATA chairman. He said that PATA started as PITA, with ‘I’ for Islands and was created to promote travel to the Pacific islands after World War 2.

Bill Lane must be turning in his grave. For a PATA chairman, such a mistake is surprising. PATA was formed in Hawaii as the Pacific Area Travel Association. ‘Area’ was changed to ‘Asia’ under Alwin Zecha’s chairmanship after I proposed APTA to better reflect PATA’s Asian activities. (Oh, and I also invented the internet.)

[] Jean-Gabriel Peres, Movenpick. When we get to 100 hotels (now we have 70), maybe we will look at an additional brand name. But not ‘Grand’, ‘Royal’ as we did at Meridien; it does not work (owners don’t like it; public does not know). Maybe the best is to buy another company and take that brand. [None of this is planned; just casual comment.]

[] Kurt Ritter, Rezidor. When Carlson gave us the Regent brand we were not too keen. When Four Seasons pulled out of the Regent Berlin we managed to get the lease payment cut 50%. We thought that if we can’t make money at half the price, then we must be idiots. Well, we were idiots; we just did not have access to that market segment. Formosa [new owners of Regent] has asked us to continue with management in Europe.

[] Jonathan Worsley, Bench Events (which organises the IHIF hotel conference in Berlin). So keen was he to link comments to an IHIF theme – ‘Stand Out From The Crowd’ – that he produced some classics:

-We all need to stand out from the crowd.

-We are all travelling more and more, to different places, to emerging markets.

-This session follows on very nicely from the previous two sessions.


The Fox