60 seconds with... Mövenpick Hotels' Francis Bertrand

Francis Bertrand, VP of international sales at Mövenpick Hotels, reveals his up-and-coming C&I destinations in 2014 at the MICE Summit in Tunisia.

Mövenpick Hotels' Francis Bertrand
Mövenpick Hotels' Francis Bertrand

What are the up-and-coming C&I destinations?
I would say within the next two years Morocco and, we hope, Tunisia. I’m still a bit worried about Egypt because this was a fantastic MICE destination, especially for smaller incentives, but that’s still pretty down at the moment. Nothing is happening in Egypt any longer so we need to wait a little bit and then try and bring people back.

Jordan is picking up as well. It went through some difficult times but that’s now a bit quieter so it should come back. Dubai and Asia are still top sellers and top destinations. 

What are the popular destinations amongs UK groups?
We used Ghana quite a lot, which no-one was really expecting because it isn’t a classic destination. In terms of the traditional destinations, Amsterdam, Berlin and Paris are very popular for the UK markets. Long-haul destinations like Asia and Dubai are working well with UK buyers.

We haven’t noticed any switch between long haul, medium haul or short haul as a result of the financial crisis. However, we have seen shorter stays. People are more focused on rates and how money is spent.

Any new Mövenpick Hotels?
The highlights are the hotels we’re getting in Morocco, particularly Marrakech, which is a huge project. We’re getting 374 rooms right in the centre of Marrakech close to the main square. 

How do you assess the UK market today?
The UK market is one of the most solid markets we have in Europe, currently. It is very stable and despite the financial crisis, we never had any drop. We have some destinations like Tunisia and Egypt that are quite challenging but the UK market continues to perform strongly. 

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