Final Day of Questex’s IHIF EMEA 2024 offers a positive outlook for the future of hospitality investment, with strong focus on European partnerships


BERLIN, April 17, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Questex’s International Hospitality Investment Forum EMEA (IHIF EMEA) last day marked the convergence of all discussion threads, culminating in a focus on innovation and inspiration aimed at empowering our community to tackle the market head-on, implement their visions, and explore new opportunities.

Following the breakout sessions and roundtables, the general session delved into the power of partnerships, featuring discussions with GHA, Radisson, and Attendees also gained insights into innovative concepts designed to capture the spirit of the times, with presentations from Room Mate, Alpitour, Club Med, and Sunset Hospitality. Additionally, the day included an exclusive interview with hospitality legend Sir Rocco Forte who revealed plans to expand his hotel brand to more countries following the investment from Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund.

“40 percent of our business comes out of the United States, it makes sense for us to use that customer base,” he told Andreas Ewald, managing partner at Engel & Völkers Hotel Consulting. Sir Rocco named destinations such as New York, Los Angeles, Beverley Hills, and Miami as being on his list, “but it’s expensive to get in there,” he added. He also confirmed the group had already signed a property in Dubai, and was looking at Marrakech as well as Saudi Arabia, with plans for “two or three” hotels there ideally.


The event concluded with an inspiring talk from tech futurist Lindsey McInerney, who shared insights on innovation, leadership, and emphasised the irreplaceable role of humanity in the ever-evolving landscape of AI and technology.

Partnership between Questex Hospitality and the Italian Tourism and Hospitality Investment Conference

Questex Hospitality is partnering with ITHIC, the Italian Tourism and Hospitality Investment Conference, to support with the continued development of its quality delegation and to showcase the opportunity for Italian hospitality to the global capital markets. Questex Hospitality will draw on its industry experience and relationships, including the IHIF series of events, to cement ITHIC as the event where global capital connects with Italian hospitality investment opportunities and leading partners. 

“This is a turning point for ITHIC and, ideally, for the Italian hospitality development landscape of the next years. Thanks to Questex Hospitality’s experience, network and execution capabilities, this partnership is set to boost ITHIC’s quality of contents and participation. We are excited by this unique opportunity to work with industry masters,” said Mauro Santinato, President Teamwork Hospitality.

Partnership between Questex Hospitality and Enterprise Greece

“We are excited that Greece will be the host country of the Resort & Residential Forum in Athens next November,” said Mr. Marinos Giannopoulos, the CEO of Enterprise Greece. “This international conference, organised by Questex Hospitality, is dedicated to real estate investments and we are proud because after an intensive effort by Enterprise Greece, we succeeded in being selected as the country patrons, thus enhancing the image of Greece as a world-class tourist destination and as a thriving market with abundant investment opportunities.”

Young Leader Award

The Young Leader Award was presented today by IHIF EMEA and International Society of Hospitality Consultants (ISHC) to Briana Swift, Regional Vice President of Development – Northern Europe, Hyatt. This award recognises and celebrates the excellence of young emerging leaders in the hospitality industry.

Swift, with a decade of hospitality experience, drives Hyatt’s brand growth in Northern Europe. She spearheads deal sourcing, negotiations, and development strategy, previously supporting expansion in wider Europe and Southwest Asia while at Starwood Hotels and Resorts.

“I was initially drawn to hospitality as it is the perfect intersection of travel, real estate and human connection. Collaborating with colleagues and industry partners to find new approaches to challenges and achieve mutual success continues to drive my enthusiasm for the industry,” said Swift. “I am profoundly humbled and delighted to receive such an award and am grateful to work for an organisation that has invested in my professional growth from the earliest stages of my career. Thank you to my colleagues, namely Felicity Black-Roberts and Nikita Kapustkin, for the nomination. It is truly a delight to work with such an exceptional group of people on a daily basis.”

Black-Roberts, Vice President Development & Acquisitions for Hyatt, said, “Briana’s remarkable capacity to manage a substantial workload coupled with her analytical prowess commands respect, enabling her to secure the trust of new franchisees. Under her guidance, Hyatt has successfully launched several brand debuts, including the first Hyatt properties in Scandinavia, Malta, and Greek Isles in the company’s history. Briana’s commitment to excellence is unwavering; she meticulously leads projects and proactively seeks new avenues to enhance value for our owners and franchisees.”

ISHC’s CEO Andrea Belfanti commented, “Everything from Briana’s education to her rise through the ranks at Hyatt makes her the ideal recipient for this year’s Young Leader Award. Her recent promotion to Regional Vice President of Development for Northern Europe is another example of her trajectory and I know we will continue to see great things from her. Congratulations, Briana.”

Alexi Khajavi, Group President, Travel and Hospitality, Questex, commented, “Questex Hospitality is delighted to continue our work with the ISHC in recognising young talent in hospitality. Hospitality is powered by people and it’s a privilege for us to recognise and celebrate up and coming talent amongst the industry’s largest and most qualified gathering of senior executive leaders. Congratulations to Briana Swift.”   

Announcements from IHIF partners:

  • Marriott International, Inc. underscored plans to grow its footprint in Türkiye with the expected addition of more than 20 properties and nearly 3,000 rooms by the end of 2025. [Press release]
  • Leonardo Hotels announces second property under the NYX Hotels by Leonardo Hotels brand in the Czech Republic. [Press release]
  • Saudi Arabia’s Tourism Development Fund (TDF) and Karisma Hotels & Resorts International signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), exploring opportunities for developing luxury resorts in Saudi Arabia. The signing took place on 17th April at the International Hospitality Investment Forum (IHIF) in Berlin. [Press release]

For more information about IHIF EMEA 2024 and to register for the event, visit IHIF EMEA website.

For a list of companies attending, please click here.

Stay connected with IHIF EMEA on X and LinkedIn.

About Questex

Questex helps people live better and longer. Questex brings people together in the markets that help people live better: travel, hospitality and wellness; the industries that help people live longer: life science and healthcare; and the technologies that enable and fuel these new experiences. We live in the experience economy – connecting our ecosystem through live events, surrounded by data insights and digital communities. We deliver experience and real results. It happens here.

Media Contact
Francesca Ruggiero
Senior Marketing Manager, Hotel Group
[email protected]

Disclaimer: The above press release comes to you under an arrangement with GlobeNewswire. takes no editorial responsibility for the same.