When 3 become 9

When 3 become 9

Purple Dog Solutions was recently hosted by AccorHotels in Barcelona as part of their Global Meetings Exchange, where over 200 hotels, agencies, corporate buyers and service partners were updated on the substantial changes at this gigantic hotel group.

Following Accor’s summer takeover of FRHI, this year’s GME (a long standing FRHI tradition) was very much more than just a fabulous networking and ‘state of the nation’ address with Fairmont, Raffles and Swissotel.  Whilst we did indeed still enjoy some generous and creative hospitality, we also learned about the newly created Luxe division at Accor, which brings together some iconic high-end hotel brands.

Hosted by Chris Cahill, CEO Luxury Brands AccorHotels Luxe; we were given some insight into this ‘new’ division of one of the world’s largest hotel groups.  FRHI brands now stand alongside the other premium and upper up-scale brands of Legend, SO Sofitel, M Gallery, Pullman and the new Novotels, providing our industry with probably the most extensive range of iconic and luxurious hotels available.

The candid way in which brand ambassadors and business leaders tackled challenging questions from the illustrious audience of event professionals, was refreshing indeed.  We were told about the challenges of the ‘back office’ functions, which are still ongoing; we were asked for our patience whilst they re-align their sales and marketing functions and we learnt much about future plans for the brands.  All in all, an enlightening few days.

Coupled with the full on workload of 30 one-to-one meetings and panel discussions, was a huge degree of fun, whereby all brands and partners engaged the international audience with immersive activities and rather wonderful cuisine.  We worked hard and we partied equally hard… but at the end of the event, we at Purple Dog Solutions remain positive that this mega merger will not dilute or blur their brand values, or turn them into one homogenised luxury group.  With extensive knowledge of the brands ourselves, it is also good to know that we will still have direct access to the hotel ‘movers and shakers’, which is so fundamentally important to our clients.

We would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate Barcelona and its industry suppliers on its expert showcasing of the destination and to the Fairmont Rey Juan Carlos I, who were quite simply outstanding.