Program Announced

If you’re looking for answers on the information and trends in Canadian lodging the HAC Conference is the place to be.
This year, some of the biggest names and the brightest minds in the industry will come together to share insights, nurture ideas and help formulate strategies that will help drive business over the next twelve months.

Top name speakers.
Insightful information.
National networking.
All in one place. All with one objective—more business.
 

 

WEDNESDAY FEBRUARY 7, 2018

DELTA HOTELS BY MARRIOTT TORONTO AIRPORT & CONFERENCE CENTRE 
655 DIXON RD, ETOBICOKE, ON M9W 1J3

9:00AM -
4:00PM

HAC BOARD OF DIRECTORS MEETING
(Sohana Room)

This is a closed business meeting for members of the Board. 

4:15PM -
5:00PM

HAC ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING
(Montreal AB Room)

This meeting is open to current members of the Hotel Association of Canada.

 

5:30PM -
6:00PM

BADGE PICK UP- REGISTRATION OPENS
(Plaza Foyer)

6:00PM -
9:00PM

OPENING RECEPTION & HAC’S AWARDS OF EXCELLENCE PRESENTATION
(Plaza Ballroom C)

NEW this year,  we celebrate winners of the 2017 Awards of Excellence - individuals, companies, properties that have demonstrated significant accomplishments, exemplary leadership and tireless commitment to Canada’s lodging industry. The evening will be filled with fabulous energy from our DJ, signature cocktails, amazing food (read: “not another chicken dinner”) and tons of networking excitement.

SPECIAL NOTE RE: AWARDS
We’ve heard tons of feedback that the “6 hour, sit-down, banquet awards” limits conversation and fun, so we decided to do something different, to give the industry what it wants- meaningful connection with friends! Our Awards of Excellence Winners will be celebrated at the top end of the opening reception on FEB 7th. Franck Arnold will be the first winner to parade down the red carpet AT 630PM SHARP- think Soul Train! The entire awards presentation will be complete by 7PM so we can ALL mix and mingle, all night long. Please arrive by 6:00PM, nice and early, in the Plaza Ballroom. Marriott International has generously sponsored the evening’s cocktails and beautiful food service- it will be the event of the year!

Come cheer on ALL our winners as they walk down the red carpet!



 

 

THURSDAY FEBRUARY 8. 2018

DELTA HOTELS BY MARRIOTT TORONTO AIRPORT & CONFERENCE CENTRE 
655 DIXON RD, ETOBICOKE, ON M9W 1J3

7:00AM –
5:00PM

BADGE PICK UP- REGISTRATION OPENS
(Plaza Foyer)

7:00AM-
8:00AM

NETWORKING BREAKFAST WITH SPONSORS
(Plaza Foyer)

Sponsored by:

8:00AM-
8:20AM

WELCOME REMARKS: HAC CHAIR ADDRESS 
(Plaza Ballroom)

Speaker:
Vito Curalli, Chair

8:20AM-
9:00AM

PRESIDENT'S ADDRESS: SUSIE GRYNOL 
(Plaza Ballroom)

Speaker:
Susie Grynol, President

9:00AM-
10:00AM

 

PLENARY: THE FUTURE IS NOW
(Plaza Ballroom)

Back by popular demand, Tony Chapman moderates a lively panel of innovators discussing the future of the consumer. Revolutions in social media, mobile technology, virtual reality and advanced data analytics have made consumers increasingly savvy and demanding more than ever before. What can the Canadian hotel industry learn from our trend-setters and their future outlook on consumer activity?

Speakers:
Christiane Germain | Group Germain Hotels
Brian Leon | Choice Hotels Canada Inc.
Carlos Paulo | Google
Alan Smithson | MetaVRse
Lindsey Iles | Expedia

10:00AM-
10:30AM

NETWORKING COFFEE BREAK WITH SPONSORS 
(Plaza Foyer)

BREAKOUTS: THE CHOICE IS YOURS
The HAC Conference includes interactive breakout sessions that are designed to appeal to a General Manager or a Director of Sales/Marketing. These workshops incorporate a combination of short presentations from leading industry experts and open debate in which all attendees will be encouraged to participate, offer their own ideas, ask any questions etc. 

10:30AM-
11:45AM

 

A1: LABOUR RELATIONS- INTERACTIVE WORKSHOP
(Toronto AB Room)

Ready to have a frank and open conversation about labour? This session is all about perspective, managing expectations, employee relations and driving hotel performance in a unionized or non-unionized environment. This STRATEGY session explores best practices for management to create employee success, collectively. Bring your questions! 

Moderator:
Donna D’Andrea | Hicks Morley Hamilton Stewart Storie LLP

10:30AM-
11:45AM

 

A2: PROFITS OUTSIDE THE BEDROOM
(Hamilton Room)

Panel discusses revenue wins from food and beverage outlets. Hear from consultants and operators who are creating significant revenue streams at their properties as they target what guests want—and are willing to pay for—during their stay.

Moderator: 
Trish Halliwell | CWB Franchise Finance

Speakers:
Robert Bruins | Oxford Properties Group
Tony Cohen | Global Edge Investments / Crescent Hotel & Resorts
Stacey Hansson Ricky's Family-Style Restaurants
Eric Malcolmson | ICON Legacy Hospitality

10:30AM-
11:45AM

A3: THE BIG DATA SESSION
(Montreal AB Room)

This session reviews Canadian hotel operating statistics, which include measuring profitability, breaking down REVPAR data by full-service vs. limited-service, by class and location types, and taking a deeper market look at profitability change and labor analysis.

Speakers:
Emile Gourieux | STR
Carrie Russell | HVS

10:30AM-
11:45AM

A4: RISE OF THE CONNECTED HOTEL
(Ottawa Room)

As the Internet of Things (IoT) continues to evolve, today’s traveller demands a seamless, connected and personalized experience from check-in to check-out. From the proliferation of AI and voice assistance, to Smart TVs, wearable devices and interactive displays, are Canadian hotels ready for the age of the truly connected stay? This session will cover innovation trends shaping the industry, and what today’s hoteliers should consider from strategy to implementation and day-to-day operation. 
 
Speakers:
Reetu Gupta | Easton's Group of Hotels
Mark McCue | Larco Hospitality
Mary Peterson | Samsung Canada

Presented by:

11:45AM-
1:00PM

NETWORKING BUFFET LUNCH WITH SPONSORS 
(Plaza Foyer)

1:00PM-
1:30PM

BREAKING THROUGH & DRIVING INTERNATIONAL DEMAND FOR CANADA
(Plaza Ballroom)

2017 shaped up to be a strong year in international visitation to Canada and 2018 is looking even brighter. SVP & CMO, Jon Mamela will speak to Destination Canada’s strategy to breakthrough and drive market share for Canada. With a focus on commercial relevance, DC’s marketing and sales initiatives fuel a dynamic visitor mix leading to strong demand and return on investment for the industry. Mamela will provide an overview of DC’s marketing strategy & campaigns, results achieved in 2017 and forecasts for international markets in 2018.
 

1:30PM-
2:30PM

PLENARY: NEWLY FORMATTED! HAC’S TRAVEL INTENTIONS SURVEY
(Plaza Ballroom)

Join Nik Nanos (Nanos Research) as he highlights key findings of the 2017 HAC Travel Intentions Survey. Nik will discuss the trends and provide insight into what this information means to your business and your operational planning.

 

2:30PM-
2:45PM

15 MINUTE INTERMISSION, WALK TO NEXT SESSION

BREAKOUTS: THE CHOICE IS YOURS

2:45PM-
3:45PM

 

B1: DIRECT BOOKING WAR STRATEGY- WHAT IS WORKING FOR FLAGS?
(Toronto AB Room)

In the last couple of years, hotel chains have gradually tried to wrestle back control over distribution from online travel agents. Some have been more successful than others, thanks in part to beefed-up loyalty schemes that offer extra incentives for customers to book through their own websites. While OTA’s aren’t necessarily the biggest part of the mix, their strategic partnership matters. Hear from the diverse panel as they candidly discuss the issues.

Moderator:
Johanne Belanger | Tourism Toronto

Speakers:
Frank Campo | Thompson Hotels
Robin Garrett | Meridian Reservation Systems
Neil Hornsby | Best Western Hotels & Resorts
Laurie Nitardy | Hyatt Place and Hyatt House

2:45PM-
3:45PM

 

B2: CLEANING UP HOUSEKEEPING
(Ottawa Room)

NEW! Dr. Frederic Dimanche (Director, Ted Rogers School of Hospitality and Tourism Management) will take the first 15 minutes and present a benchmark study on the cleanliness of Canadian hotels. With research provided by Revinate, generated by consumer review websites such as TripAdvisor, this data-rich presentation will help set the stage for a panel discussion covering housekeeping topics like; training, retention of staff, in-house or outsourcing, guest expectations, impacts on online reviews and so much more.

Moderator:
Ian Milford | JRoss Hospitality Recruiters

Speakers:
Dr. Frederic Dimanche | Ryerson University

Suzanne Gatrell | Kingsbridge Management Limited
Paul Jones | Best Western Plus Sawridge Suites
Nikki Stewart | Fairmont Royal York

2:45PM-
3:45PM

 

B3: WHY YOU CAN'T COMPETE ON PRICE ALONE!
(Hamilton Room)

Hotels have never operated in a more fragmented or competitive booking environment than they have today. Not only are hoteliers challenged to attract the right guest, at the right price, in markets that have seen large-scale hotel development over recent years, but they are also facing stiff competition from new players in the sharing economy. Learn how to articulate value, not price, the role of discounting and how to set your property apart from the competition. 

Speaker:
Jamieson Asselta | 
IDeaS - A SAS COMPANY

2:45PM-
3:45PM

B4: GET CHINA-READY! PREPARING FOR THE CANADA-CHINA YEAR OF TOURISM IN 2018
(Montreal AB Room)

China is one of Canada’s fastest-growing tourism markets and is our third-largest market in terms of arrivals. Through the New Tourism Vision, the Government is taking action to improve Canadian tourism marketing, access, and product—including a commitment to double the number of tourists from China by 2021. This will have a profound impact on hotels and will provide increased business opportunities in both primary and secondary markets. As we celebrate the Canada-China Year of Tourism in 2018, it will be more important than ever for hotels to ensure they are well-prepared to welcome the expected increase in Chinese visitors. This session will provide participants with a practical best practice guideline to ensure that hotels are China-ready.

Moderator:
Alana Baker | Hotel Association of Canada

Speakers:
Sarah Kutulakos | Canada China Business Council
Jon Mamela | Destination Canada
Laura Pallotta | Marriott Hotels of Canada

3:45PM-
4:15PM

NETWORKING COFFEE BREAK WITH SPONSORS
(Plaza Foyer)

Sponsored by: 

4:15PM-
5:15PM

FINAL PLENARY: DAVID ALLISON
(Plaza Ballroom)

Author, advisor, and researcher David Allison probably knows more about motivating contemporary markets than anyone; he’s been studying how & why people behave the way they do for more than 30 years. He helps organizations and individuals understand their market, survive & thrive through massive change, and motivate more people to act more often.

How to Motivate More People More Often
Curious about why organizations still use outdated ideas like age and gender to define target audiences, David set out to find a better, more contemporary way. After all, today nobody behaves the way they do because of how old they are, or what gender they might be. After 40,000 surveys across North America, David’s research uncovered a system to define target audiences based on what consumers need, want and expect out of life. This new approach motivates more people more often; with as much as 700% more accuracy. David shares the audience profiles he’s discovered, explains how to use them, and offers real-world examples to make the data come to life. This market-motivating tool will change marketing, planning, design and culture in every industry category.

5:15PM-
5:30PM

CLOSING REMARKS, TONY CHAPMAN 
(Plaza Ballroom)

 

 

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