“You need to be a QHA Accommodation Division member”, it’s an expression that has been said time and time again and no truer words have been spoken given our current circumstance.

COVID-19 has hit everyone hard in ways none of us would have ever imagined. Self-isolation, quarantine and social distancing have changed our routines, our outlook on the future and the very meaning of life.

Local, state and federal governments continue to deliver financial assistance programs to help ease the business and personal burdens many are experiencing in these unprecedented times.

Face to face meetings haven’t been possible for a number of months, however we recently gathered a small group of Brisbane accommodation members to review the current state-of-play for the industry and to hear some positive news from Charlie Cush, the CEO of the Brisbane Festival.

This was the first time since February our quarterly forum could be staged. It was held in an appropriately distanced structure in the QHA Boardroom. It provided a welcome opportunity for many directors of sales and marketing (DOSMs) to meet in person and share thoughts on the way forward.

Each of the attending accommodation members provided an update on their properties with many reporting positive weekend ‘staycation’ figures. One operator happily advised they have a small corporate conference of approximately 30 participants about to arrive to their hotel, the first in several months.

The Accommodation Division believes it is important to facilitate such opportunities for members to gather together in a face-to-face forum, all the while adhering to COVID Safe practices, for the purposes of sharing “war stories” and reporting on future bookings. It also presents the chance to discuss the future for the tourism and accommodation industry. After all, we may have to adapt or even completely change the way we accommodate guests moving into the future.

Brisbane Festival 4-26th September

Charlie Cush’s presentation on the Brisbane Festival incorporated festival highlights, each event creatively designed to accommodate COVID Safe practices. The roving pop-up performances of ‘Street Serenades’, which will visit an impressive 190 suburbs around Brisbane, emphasised the many ways in which the 2020 festival is being taken to the people, rather than the other way around.

Pending the current Queensland social-distancing restrictions being amended, the Brisbane Festival will take place on 4-26 September at a range of locations around Brisbane, with the majority of performers being Queensland-based artists. Hearing about the coming Brisbane Festival provided all of us with a very refreshing and uplifting dose of positive news for a change. Needless to say, we’re all looking forward to experiencing the festival and seeing how it may positively enhance hotel occupancies across Brisbane.

Several more of our face to face Accommodation Division meetings are scheduled for the remainder of the year. Invitations have been extended to directors of sales and marketing in Brisbane and the Gold Coast as well as general managers across the state.

If you wish to be a member of the Accommodation Division please get in contact at: accomm@qha.org.au

We would be only too pleased to provide the support so many members have welcomed and appreciated in these unprecedented times

Read this on page 56 of the online magazine - CLICK HERE