South American Hotel & Tourism Investment Conference

From September 27-28, the region’s most important annual conference on hotel and tourism investment will be held in Cartagena de Indias – Colombia

HVS is organizing SAHIC 2010 – South American Hotel & Tourism Investment Conference, to be held at the Hilton Hotel in Cartagena de Indias, Colombia, on September 27-28, 2010. A leading consulting firm in the hotel, tourism, and leisure industries, HVS is celebrating its 30th anniversary in the market, and 10 years in the region through its office in Buenos Aires.

With the purpose of sharing experiences and fostering new business development, SAHIC seeks to promote the growth and improvement of the hotel and real estate related businesses in the region. It will serve as a forum for executives from the hotel and tourism sectors to consolidate, rethink, and enhance the hospitality industry.

Arturo García Rosa, President of SAHIC and President of HVS Buenos Aires and HVS Lima, announced, “This new SAHIC edition will be a great opportunity for strengthening businesses in the region and for promoting the interaction between the major players and those interested in investing in an industry that continues to demonstrate that South America is an interesting option. Based on the success of previous SAHIC events, the conference in Cartagena de Indias will undoubtedly provide a lively platform for understanding, discussing, and assessing business opportunities.”

On a global basis, the hospitality industry is on an uptrend; according to the UNWTO, during the first half of 2010, the number of passenger arrivals increased by 7%. Latin America registered similar growth patterns: Central America, 9%; South America, 6%; and the Caribbean, 4%.

South America has many projects in the pipeline, some new and others already underway. According to estimates, approximately 20,000 new hotel rooms are either under construction in the region or in the development stage. Furthermore, the occupancy rate has also shown signs of recovery (in July it rose by 100% in Buenos Aires, by 30% in Santiago de Chile, and by 12% in Lima), while prospects for 2011, although indicating a slower trend, are very promising.

Steve Rushmore, President, Founder, and CEO of HVS, which is celebrating 30 years in the industry, is proud to support SAHIC year after year. “The growing interest in the development of the hotel industry and related activities in South America is a clear sign of the relevance of this conference, which has undoubtedly become the number one event of its kind in the region.”

Among the more than 60 speakers who will participate in SAHIC 2010 are Martín Pérez Monteverde, Peru’s Ministry of Trade and Tourism; Roland de Bonadona, CEO Accor Latin America; José Koechlin, Inkaterra’s Founder and President; Adolfo Scheel, Operations Director of GHL Hotels; Michael Johnson, Dean of Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration; Peter Greenberg, CBS News Travel Editor; Ricardo Montaudon, RCI President; Arturo García Rosa, President of SAHIC and President of HVS Buenos Aires and HVS Lima; and Steve Rushmore, President, Founder, and CEO of HVS.

Proexport Colombia will be the host patron of the event. María Claudia Lacouture, Proexport’s General Manager, noted, “Holding SAHIC at Cartagena has a special meaning as key figures from the hospitality industry will be visiting our country. They will be able to show to the world that Colombia offers outstanding opportunities, is a superb holiday destination, and is a wonderful venue for international events. Although conference attendees will come to take a look at the Latin American market, they will do so in Cartagena, one of the world’s most beautiful spots. And they will discover the wide range of opportunities found in Colombia, the most diverse terrain per square mile on the globe.”

“Also,” she continued, “the new Colombian government has set itself a challenge: to double the number of foreign visitors in the next four years. To this end, it will undertake a series of initiatives to consolidate the tourist market, including an infrastructure strategy so that the sector may substantially contribute to creating jobs and consolidating the ‘democratic prosperity’ project.”

SAHIC 2010 will keep the traditional scheme of general and break-out sessions, with the addition of an area for interaction where investors are invited to learn about projects. The celebrated Networking Express model will be present at SAHIC 2010.

Like last year, a series of awards will be presented to projects, events, organizations, companies, and people who have contributed to the development of the hospitality industry in the region.
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HVS Buenos Aires, which this year celebrates its 10th anniversary of operation, actively works in the Latin American market offering a wide range of services, both for the hotel industry and for tourist destinations and projects. This consulting firm, founded by Arturo García Rosa in 1995, was established as HVS Buenos Aires in 2000. It is focused on providing hospitality services throughout the region, including, in addition to Argentina, countries such as Chile, Peru, Ecuador, Colombia, Venezuela, Panama, Costa Rica, Bolivia, and Paraguay, among others.

Flavia Salvatierra
Press Coordinator SAHIC
Tel: +54 (11) 4515-1461 ext. 210