The leading hotel investment conference
of Central and Eastern Europe & Caucasus
Globall Business Director - Horwath HTL
James Chappell, Global Business Director - Horwath HTL. Originally from the world of advertising, James started in the hotel business in the best possible way, by accident, and has never left. James did a three-year management trainee course at the famous boutique hotel, Lydmar, in Stockholm before leaving to join consulting firm Overlook Hospitality Management. James was Managing Director of The Bench for 5 years before becoming Managing Director of STR Global. A regular speaker at conferences and on TV (CNN, BBC) and others talking about the industry.
CEE has an incredible history, which makes it a complex region culturally and from a business logics points of view. Such diversity poses challenges, hence equally tremendous opportunities for the hotel industry.
Vice President Business Development - Radisson Hotel Group
In the region since 1995, David Jenkins joined the Radisson Hotel Group in 2015 as Vice President Business Development covering Eastern Europe, Russia, Baltics, CIS, Ukraine, Georgia and Israel. This followed on from a 10-year period as one of the most respected hotel consultants in the Russian market with JLL, Cushman & Wakefield, DTZ and Horwath. Prior to consulting, David spent 8 years with Interstate in Moscow working in operations for the 3 Marriott properties. David has a degree in Hospitality Management and now has almost 30 years of experience in the industry from operations, consulting and development.
In recent years David has signed multiple hotel agreements in Bulgaria, Croatia, Serbia, Hungary,
Georgia, Ukraine, Russia, Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania amongst others.
The Radisson family of brands can be found around the world in more than 120 countries, with currently over 1,700 hotels in operation and under development. Radisson Hotel Group operates the business in EMEA and APAC with over 1,100 hotels in operation and under development. The international hotel group is rapidly growing with a plan to double the portfolio by 2025. The Group’s overarching brand promise is Every Moment Matters with a signature Yes I Can! service ethos.
The Radisson family of brands portfolio includes Radisson Collection, Radisson Blu, Radisson, Radisson RED, Radisson Individuals, Park Plaza, Park Inn by Radisson, Country Inn & Suites by Radisson, and prizeotel brought together under one commercial umbrella brand Radisson Hotels.
Radisson Rewards is Radisson Hotel Group’s loyalty program, which delivers an elevated experience that makes Every Moment Matter. As the most streamlined program in the sector, members enjoy exceptional advantages and can access their benefits from day one across a wide range of hotels in Europe, Middle East, Africa, and Asia Pacific.
Radisson Meetings provides tailored solutions for any event or meeting, including hybrid solutions placing guests and their needs at the heart of its offer. Radisson Meetings is built around three strong service commitments: Personal, Professional and Memorable, while delivering on the brilliant basics and being uniquely 100% Carbon Neutral.
At Radisson Hotel Group we care for people, communities and planet and aim to be Net Zero by 2050 based on the approved near-term Science Based Targets. With unique solutions such as 100% carbon neutral Radisson Meetings, we make sustainable hotel stays easy. To facilitate sustainable travel choices, all our hotels are becoming verified on Hotel Sustainability Basics.
The health and safety of guests and team members remain a top priority for Radisson Hotel Group. All properties across the Group’s portfolio are subject to stringent health and safety requirements, as outlined in the Radisson Hotels Safety Protocol. The Safety Protocol is an integral part of Radisson Hotel Group’s Safety and Security program ensuring we always care for our guests and team members.
"We’ve been here before, it's probably our 5th year and we are always happy to support HOTCO. It's great to be back and see a lot of familiar and new faces. For me, it's very important to be here and I guess it's the same for everyone else. It’s been a very busy conference month, but HOTCO is still very well attained and I think it speaks testament for the organisation and the quality of the event."
GENERAL MANAGER, KEMPINSKI HOTEL CORVINUS BUDAPEST
In September 2014 Stephan Interthal returned as General Manager to Kempinski Hotel Corvinus Budapest, where he had held the same position from 1997 until 2004. At the time, he implemented a comprehensive refurbishment project and orchestrated ambitious renovation works to overhaul all of the rooms and suites, the spa and the restaurant.
Before his second Budapest appointment, Mr Interthal was in charge of Hotel Baltschug Kempinski Moscow from July 2013, where he oversaw the final stages of an EUR 20 Mio renovation project as well as the repositioning of the hotel. Prior to Moscow, he spent three-and-a-half years as Managing Director of the Kempinski Hotel Beijing Lufthansa, Kempinski’s flagship property in China.
During his second tenure at Kempinski Hotel Corvinus Budapest, he opened ÉS Deli, a New York-style takeaway coffee shop in the Lobby. He oversaw the redesign of the entire event floor, and as a result, a truly innovative and Budapest’s most state-of-the-art event venue was created under the new brand name of “Ten Rooms” in April 2017. At the beginning of 2018, he launched the renovation of the guest floors, which was finished in Spring 2021, introducing new premium room and suite categories. Under his leadership, the hotel’s restructured catering service “The Kitchen Caters” has reached record revenues and is perceived as the most exclusive caterer in Budapest.
Stephan Interthal is a graduate of the Cornell University, and received his European Business MBA from Reims Management School in 2000. A true passionate hotelier with senior management experience at Kempinski finest properties, including the Kempinski Vier Jahreszeiten Munich and the legendary Hotel Adlon Kempinski Berlin, Mr Interthal offers a wealth of experience from four decades in the hospitality industry. Throughout his remarkable career, he has consistently advocated providing customers with impeccable service that exceeds expectations.
Mr Interthal is a member of the Board of Deutscher Wirtschaftsclub in Hungary.
Under his management, Kempinski Hotel Corvinus Budapest received several prestigious awards, and Mr Interthal was named Hotelier of the Year by Best of Budapest & Hungary in 2018. He was nominated and finalist for the category Best Hotelier by Worldwide Hospitality Awards in 2018. In 2021, he was listed among the 50 top influential persons in tourism in Hungary.
A German national, Mr Interthal speaks fluent English in addition to his mother tongue, and he is conversant in French. His passions in life are fine dining, wine and hospitality. His hobbies include golf, football and travel.
"Over the last five years, this conference has become an institutional conference."
AREA VICE PRESIDENT EASTERN EUROPE, MARRIOTT INTERNATIONAL, INC.
Pankaj Birla is Area Vice President for Eastern Europe is responsible for managing operations for luxury (Bvlgari, Ritz Carlton, St, Regis, Luxury Collection & JW Marriott) premium (Marriott, Sheraton, Westin, Le Meridien, Autograph) and select brands (Courtyard, Four Points by Sheraton, Moxy, Marriott Executive Apartments). His area starts in Prague and ends in Novosibirsk East to West and from St. Petersburg to Tel Aviv North to South. He has currently has 49 hotels spread across 13 countries with another 10 in the pipeline to open in the next 24 months.
Pankaj has an experience of over 25 years of working for Marriott International. He has had broad experience in operations finance, corporate support, above property roles and General Manager. He has worked in the United States, Asia and Europe. He has been in the role of Area Vice President for Eastern Europe since March 2017.
Pankaj resides in Oberursel, Germany which is a suburb of Frankfurt.
"Marriott’s growth in Central Eastern Europe is very robust, so this is a great platform for us to continue to talk about our company as a brand and what we have to offer because there is a lot of prosperity in this part of the world that we can exploit. The future is bright, and I feel very optimistic about this region."