Agenda

We’re constantly looking to inspire, grow and improve year on year so we always up the ante by introducing different themes, new keynotes, more panel sessions and workshops led by industry experts.

  • 08:00am - 08:45am
    Registration, Welcome Coffee and Tradeshow Open to Conference Delegates

    Pick up your lanyard and name tag at the registration desk and enjoy a coffee while networking with other conference delegates. The exhibitor tradeshow will open to all conference delegates.


  • View bio

    Adrian Caruso's biography

    Conference Organiser
    Maximum Occupancy

    Adrian is founder and CEO of Australasia's leading travel, tourism and hospitality full-service marketing and communications firm, Fastrack Group.

    Adrian is a highly experienced and respected travel, tourism and hospitality digital marketing, media and communications expert with over 25 years in the industry. He is also a management consultant and strategist. 

    08:45am - 08:50am
    Welcome Address

    Adrian Caruso, Conference Organiser
    Maximum Occupancy

    A welcome introduction to Maximum Occupancy 2022 by the conference MC and organiser, Adrian Caruso.

  • 08:50am - 09:30am
    Australian Accommodation: The past, present and future

    The opening conference presentation is a must-attend for it sets the basis for the entire day. Listen to two of Australia's best speakers on the Australian accommodation market, the past, present and future. Uncover how Australian markets are behaving in conjunction with supply as a growing factor. Listen to the outlook for accommodation operators 2022 and beyond.

    Panellists

    • Adele Labine-Romain's biography

      National Travel, Hospitality and Leisure Sector Leader
      Deloitte

      Adele is the Australian Tourism Sector Leader at Deloitte and a partner within Deloitte Access Economics’ economic and policy advisory practice. With a deep understanding of the tourism landscape and experience in strategy and policy development including executive roles with Tourism Australia (Executive General Manager, Strategy and Research) and peak industry body Tourism & Transport Forum (Executive Director), Adele works with government and private sector clients across tourism-related industries including aviation, transport and cruising, hotels, business events, sports and major event and attractions.

      Adele Labine-Romain, National Travel, Hospitality and Leisure Sector Leader
      Deloitte

    • Matthew Burke's biography

      Regional Manager - Pacific
      STR

      Matthew Burke is the Regional Manager Pacific at STR leading the growth in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific Islands. He has over a dozen years of experience in hospitality, with Hyatt and IHG in various roles including revenue management.

      Matthew Burke, Regional Manager - Pacific
      STR

  • 09:30am - 10:00am
    Rest, Revival and the Future - An Owner's Perspective

    Listen to a panel of leading small, medium and large hotel owners, operators, investors and hotel brands on the current challenges facing them in a COVID world

  • 10:00am - 10:30am
    Road to Recovery Post-COVID Initiatives, Insights & Opinions

    An outside of the box panel discussion from five industry leaders that have found continued success and growth despite the pressures of COVID. Hear how they have navigated the past 18 months, what stands them apart and what they see happening in the industry over the next 2 years.

    Panellists

  • 10:30am - 11:00am
    Morning Tea

    Break time! Enjoy a delicious pastry and tea or coffee with fellow delegates.

  • 11:00am - 11:30am
    Accessing Events - The Importance of Event as a Potential Key Sales Channel

    Listen to this enlightening discussion on the importance of major and business events to a location and together they will explore how individual operators can maximise the opportunities these major events create.


  • View bio

    Adrian Caruso's biography

    Founder, Managing Director
    Fastrack Group

    Adrian is founder and CEO of Australasia's leading travel, tourism and hospitality full-service marketing and communications firm, Fastrack Group.

    Adrian is a highly experienced and respected travel, tourism and hospitality digital marketing, media and communications expert with over 25 years in the industry. He is also a management consultant and strategist. 

    11:30am - 11:55am
    Winning More Direct Bookings in 2022

    Adrian Caruso, Founder, Managing Director
    Fastrack Group

    With the world we live in and the industry very different to two years ago when COVID was declared a pandemic, the way people dream about, search and book travel is very different. In this highly interactive presentation, learn what travellers want and the new trends on how they are booking. Listen to one of the industry's leaders in direct booking know-how.

  • 11:55am - 12:25pm
    The Corporate Market - Gone Forever? Or Different?

    We take a deep-dive into this vitally important segment for hoteliers and the different impacts COVID19 has had on it. From reduced inventory due to hotels in quarantine, employer's focus on duty of care, pressure on corporate rates to be lowered and locked in longer. To the importance of TMC's and how to best leverage their relationships.

    Facilitated by one of the corporate travel industry's veteran TMC in APAC.

  • 12:10pm - 12:25pm
    How to Attract and Manage the Non-English Speaking Domestic Clientele

    Daniel Xu, General Manager
    Digital Crew

    Australia's ethnic composition is changing, with recent reports saying that 25% will be of Asia extraction in the future. In this session, hear key insights into the changing 'face' of tourism, promoting to non-english speaking markets - fulfilling dream rather than selling product. Maximising the customer experience for these markets and the role of multi-lingual apps for tourism businesses.

  • 12:25pm - 12:50pm
    What Travellers Want in 2022

    Hear from one of Expedia's leaders in APAC about the impact of COVID19 and the lessons to be learned from global research on how to drive revenue for your property.

  • 12:50pm - 01:20pm
    Hotel Leader & CEO Meet-up

    In this session, listen to Australia and APAC hotel leaders and CEOs discuss the latest trends, issues and opportunities facing the accommodation industry in Australia. This panel session will be facilitated by one of APAC's leading accommodation news editors, Matthew Stephens from eHotelier.

    Panellists

    • Michael Johnson's biography

      CEO, TAA National & NSW
      Tourism Accommodation Australia

      As CEO of Tourism Accommodation Australia, National & NSW, Michael Johnson calls on his experience within the hotel industry, spanning over three decades and across Australia and New Zealand. Previously in the business of managing four and five star business hotels, resorts and tourist attractions Michael shares insight into all facets of the tourism accommodation industry, from operations to senior management.

      Most recently, after a successful tenure as General Manager of PARKROYAL Melbourne Airport, Michael moved back to Sydney to take on the position of General Manager at PARKROYAL Parramatta and managed the redevelopment extension and 2016 relaunch. Since April 2019, Michael has lead the team at Tourism Accommodation Australia - National & NSW, liaising with Governments to combat hotel industry specific issues such as skilled migration, unregulated accommodation and the skills shortages gap.

      Michael is a natural ambassador of the hotel industry and is committed to encouraging the next generations to try their hand at building a successful career within the industry, an experience he has found extremely rewarding.

      Originally from Sydney, Michael possesses valuable local and national insights and exceptional industry knowledge and skills.

      Michael Johnson, CEO, TAA National & NSW
      Tourism Accommodation Australia

    • Gavin Faull's biography

      Chairman and President
      Swiss-Belhotel International

      Gavin has over 35 years experience in hotel management and operations under his belt. He started his career as an accountant for The Peninsula Group, Hong Kong. In 1983, he was made chief executive of Kingsgate International Corporate Limited, a publicly listed company that owned several hotels in Australia and New Zealand.

      He worked for a start-up hotel management company Swiss-Belhotel group in 1990, before taking over the ownership of the company in 1999. Apart from his illustrious career in the hospitality industry, he also runs a number of agricultural companies in his native New Zealand. Gavin holds hold a Bachelor Degree in Accounting from Victoria University of Wellington.

      Gavin Faull, Chairman and President
      Swiss-Belhotel International

    • Graham Perry's biography

      Managing Director
      BWH Hotel Group Australasia

      Graham is a seasoned executive leader with experience working across the global travel, tourism, media and hospitality sectors.  The thread that flows through his career is his passion for marketing and the ever-evolving travel distribution and technology landscape.

      From 2016 Graham has worked with a number of successful travel start-ups including eRoam who are applying artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to transform travel distribution. He was appointed Managing Director, Australasia for Best Western Hotels & Resorts in May 2018.

      Graham Perry, Managing Director
      BWH Hotel Group Australasia

    • Julian Clark's biography

      CEO
      Lancemore Group

      The Lancemore Group is one of Australia’s preeminent Boutique Hotel groups.  They operate six iconic boutique hotels - Mansion Hotel & Spa at Werribee Park, Lindenwarrah at Milawa, Larmont Sydney by Lancemore, Lindenderry at Red Hill, Alamanda Palm Cove by Lancemore & Lancemore Hill at Macedon Ranges.  Never a group to be boxed, the Lancemore Group also run a multi-award winning winery (Lindenderry Wines) and have a white label hotel management division. 

      Their properties regularly feature in best-of-the-best hotel lists and are the iconic hotels of their respective regions. Indeed, most Lancemore hotels have been regular finalists in the coveted Luxury Travel Gold List Awards, with the Mansion Hotel and Spa being in the top 5 “Australian Hotels” for the past three years.  With a core strength in Food & Beverage, many of the Lancemore Group’s restaurants are critically acclaimed and are mainstay’s in the Good Food Guide, whilst Lindenderry Wines is a multi-award winning Halliday 5* winery.

      Julian Clark, CEO
      Lancemore Group

    Facilitator

    • Matthew Stephens's biography

      President
      eHotelier

      Matthew is a graduate of the Blue Mountains International Hotel School in Australia, where he was named Alumni of the Year in 2013. He served as the VP Operations at the Celtic Manor Resort in Wales for five years, and came back to Australia to be the General Manager of the Shoal Bay Resort and Spa in NSW. Matthew is also well versed in the technology side of hospitality, having served as the IT Manager of Rydges Hotels and Resorts and most recently as the Director, Information Systems at Carnival Australia.

      Matthew Stephens, President
      eHotelier

  • 01:20pm - 02:10pm
    Lunch

    Network with other attendees over a delicious buffet lunch.

  • 02:10pm - 02:40pm
    Revenue Management - How its all changed. The Dangers of a Quick Win

    Hear from leading revenue specialists as they discuss the new wild west of forecasting post-pandemic and their tips for navigating the changes in customer behaviour. Learn what type of quick wins have worked versus the impact on longer-term strategies and whether traditional tactics still work

    Panellists

    Facilitator

    • Melissa Kalan's biography

      Founder
      ARMA

      Melissa Kalan is the Founder of the Australian Revenue Management Association (ARMA), providing revenue management education via the ARMA Academy to the accommodation industry.

      Her life philosophy is centred on the principle of “always learning”, and with this she empowers organisations to lead a revenue management culture from the top down that influences both profits and staff retention.

      Melissa wrote the first Australian nationally accredited VET short course in revenue management and the Graduate Certificate of Revenue Management – an online globally recognised qualification, the first of its kind, in partnership with Torrens University Australia. Melissa co-facilitates the university program with Torrens University Australia and also founded the annual APAC Revenue Management Summit.

      Melissa Kalan, Founder
      ARMA

  • 02:40pm - 03:05pm
    Keynote Presentation - Australia's Tourism Future

    Keynote presenter to be announced shortly.

  • 03:05pm - 03:35pm
    The Tourism Employment Landscape: Are We Moving Towards a Talent War?

    With reports of 80% of accommodation industry employees being severely impacted by the impacts of COVID19, we are either at a crisis point or have the opportunity to reimagine our future as employers. With this massive loss of experience across the industry, hear from a vastly experienced panel with four very different perspectives, but one joint goal or being best prepared for what lays ahead.

  • 03:35pm - 04:05pm
    Hotel Marketer Deep Dive: Dissecting COVID and Future Strategies

    Time to get inside your guest's head with New Zealand's senior hotel and agency marketing experts. What has COVID changed in our guest's buying behaviour and have these behaviours changed for good? Gain insights about what is working now and what they expect will become the future trends in the domestic and international markets for getting your guests to click your BOOK NOW button.

    Panellists

    • Leanne Stocks, Director of Sales and Marketing
      BWH Hotel Group℠ Australasia

    • Chantelle Veness, Group Director of Sales & Marketing
      The Lancemore Group

    • Sue Johnson's biography

      Marketing Director
      Spicers Retreats

      After finishing a business degree and scratching the London travel itch, Sue decided that if she could get a job in travel marketing she’d never work another day in her life. And that’s exactly what happened. Sue started with Flight Centre in 2005 as a Consultant and quickly worked up to Team Leader. After a one year contract at Malaysia Airlines as a Marketing Officer she returned to Flight Centre as Recruitment Marketing Officer and over the next 10+ years held a range of roles including National Brand Manager for Flight Centre Brand, Head of Retail Marketing for Flight Centre in the UK and Head of Marketing for Travel Associates and Cruiseabout. Sue recently moved to Spicers Retreats as Marketing Director and is loving every minute of it.

      When she isn’t showing off Spicers Retreats, Sue is spending time with her two girls, trying to run 5kms in 25 minutes and perfecting a banana bread recipe (all suggestions and advice welcome!)

      Sue Johnson, Marketing Director
      Spicers Retreats

  • 04:05pm - 04:30pm
    Afternoon Tea

    Sample the delicious array of cakes, biscuits and beverages on offer while networking with conference delegates.

  • 04:30pm - 05:00pm
    Hotel Technology & Customer Experience in 2022 and Beyond

  • 05:00pm - 05:30pm
    Branded vs. Non-brand vs. Soft brands vs. Boutique

    With the importance of brand being vitally important in a book direct strategy, we take a spirited look into the relevance of brand.com in the current environment and into the future. Do you need brand support or what does it take to make your own brand stand out?

    Panellists

    Facilitator

    • Michael Smith's biography

      Managing Director
      Ananas Consulting

      Michael Smith wants to live in a hotelier world where creativity has no limits, hotels celebrate their individual stories and a better, more human interaction is formed with hotel guests. 

      With over 25 years of experience, Michael has worked for the leading global hotel management group Accor, where he was a General Manager for a number of well-renowned Australian hotels across all market segments. He is currently the Managing Director of Ananas Consulting established at the beginning of 2016 to provide a one-stop shop for owners who wished to develop a boutique hotel portfolio with a focus on creative product offerings.

      With his extensive industry experience, Michael could see that Hotels were changing and fast. In an age when "boutique" and "lifestyle" were becoming blurred, guests expected more. He could see they wanted experiences, even if it was just Instagram worthy. People want to connect with their hotel in a different way. Having had success in the large branded hotel sphere, through his innovation focussed leadership, Michael could see that he had a lot to offer owners in this new hotel future. 

      When he is not occupied in his specialised areas of strategic planning, financial management, leadership and product development; you can find him tap dancing his way onto a baseball field or looking for unique ingredients at the grocers for his next homemade recipe.

      Michael Smith, Managing Director
      Ananas Consulting

  • 05:30pm - 07:00pm
    Networking Drinks by Fastrack Group

    Join us for a drink and canapes sponsored by Fastrack Group while you network with other attendees and exhibitors.

  • 08:00am - 08:40am
    Wednesday, 6 April, Workshops Day - Registration and Welcome Coffee

    Workshops day is full of one-on-one style learning sessions, so grab a coffee and get ready for lots of learning from the experts.


  • View bio

    Adrian Caruso's biography

    Founder, Managing Director
    Fastrack Group

    Adrian is founder and CEO of Australasia's leading travel, tourism and hospitality full-service marketing and communications firm, Fastrack Group.

    Adrian is a highly experienced and respected travel, tourism and hospitality digital marketing, media and communications expert with over 25 years in the industry. He is also a management consultant and strategist. 

    08:45am - 09:30am
    2022 Book Direct Blueprint

    Adrian Caruso, Founder, Managing Director
    Fastrack Group

    In this highly interactive workshop you will learn how to formulate or improve your hotel's 'Direct Booking Strategy' through proven techniques and strategies. Adrian Caruso, one of the industry's leading Direct Booking strategists will touch on all major digital channels and data practices and look at how they should be applied as we head into 2022. A not to be missed hands-on workshop. Walk away with a blueprint to drive more direct booking in 2022


  • View bio

    Mauro Risch's biography

    Hotel & Resort Photographer
    The Hotel Photographer

    Over the last decade, Mauro Risch has become known simply as The Hotel Photographer. He travels around the Asia Pacific region creating visual content that brings brand awareness and most importantly, improves bookings. He is trusted by PR and marketing teams, hotel managers and executive brand teams right across the Asia Pacific region. Mauro is the preferred photographer for some of the top operators across the industry, including IHG, Wyndham and Meriton.

    09:30am - 10:00am
    The impact of Photography on your bookings

    Mauro Risch, Hotel & Resort Photographer
    The Hotel Photographer

    “One great photo is worth a thousand bookings”

    Listen and learn from Mauro on how to produce the best visual content to help you increase your bookings. What to look for and what to avoid. He will show you the way to get what you need out of your photoshoot. A workshop not to be missed!

  • 09:45am - 10:15am
    How to Align Your Marketing & Revenue Management Strategies

    Now more than ever it is essential to have your commercial team aligned, as we move through and beyond this COVID period, the importance of demand creation and the strategic management of it has never been more important. In this session we will discuss the role each team member plays and how data links them all together.

  • 10:45am - 11:10am
    Morning Tea

    Grab a tea or coffee and discuss the morning sessions with your colleagues.

  • 11:10am - 11:40am
    Major and Business Events to Grow Your Business

    Business events delivered a staggering $35.7 billion to the Australian economy pre-COVID. Now impacted by the pandemic, the sector is starting to come back thanks largely to a strong and loyal domestic customer base. With a long lead time and more events being planned, how can you ensure your hotel is BE ready, what are the expectations of the international and domestic client and what should you expect from them?

  • 11:40am - 12:10pm
    Impact of Your Employer Brand

    Do you know what your employer brand is and what impact it can potentially have on your ability to find and retain good staff?

  • 12:35pm - 01:05pm
    Maximising The GDS & Distribution

    The questions often asked by hoteliers...when will corporate travel resume? What will it look like? How do I maximise any opportunities? What technology has been accelerated recently? Find out the answers to these and more as we take a look at the ever-evolving distribution landscape.

  • 01:20pm - 02:10pm
    Lunch

    Enjoy a full buffet lunch with your fellow attendees.

  • 02:50pm - 03:20pm
    Best Bang for Buck: Marketing Spend Strategies for Small Operators

    Listen to some of Australia's leading hotel, travel marketing and distribution specialists show you how you can market your accommodation business for not much as all. Learn how to get more bang for your buck by correctly leveraging under utilised channels that can heavily influence your business.

  • 03:20pm - 03:45pm
    Ask anything round tables

    Delegates often say this is the best session of the entire conference. This is your opportunity to sit down with the experts and gain answers and insights for your hotel in a consultation style format.

    ROUND TABLE 1
    Direct Booking Strategy

    ROUND TABLE 2
    Revenue Management

    ROUND TABLE 3
    OTAs - Learning How to Best Use Them

    ROUND TABLE 4
    Social Media, Email Marketing, SEO, Paid Advertising Strategies

    ROUND TABLE 5
    Growing your Business with Conferences and Events

  • 03:20pm - 03:45pm
    Afternoon Tea

    Take a break and grab something to eat before our final session of the day.

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