Co-hosted by The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and the Jiangsu Provincial Tourism Bureau, and co-organized by PolyU’s School of Hotel and Tourism Management (SHTM), the Jinling Hotels and Resorts Corporation, and the Nanjing Municipal Tourism Bureau, the Third International Forum on China Hotel Brand Development was successfully held in Nanjing in Jiangsu Province from April 27-28, 2009. Sponsored by the K. Wah Group for the third year, and supported this year by the China Tourist Hotels Association, the forum provided an excellent opportunity for industry leaders, academics, and government officials to exchange views on the development and management of hotel branding in a rapidly-developing market.
In his opening address to the forum, which was held at the Nanjing International Conference and Exhibition Centre, Dr. Lui Sun-wing, vice president (partnership development) of PolyU, spoke of the importance of collaborating with industry in the pursuit of research excellence. He said he fully recognized the importance of branding in today’s global economy and particularly appreciated the timeliness of this event in view of the current financial challenges that the world is facing. Dr. Lui Che-woo, chairman of the K. Wah Group, was full of praise for PolyU and the SHTM because of their outstanding achievements. It was this extraordinary level of commitment that motivated him to pledge his support to the university and the school. Other distinguished guests of the opening ceremony included Mr. Zhang Ji, deputy director general of the Jiangsu Provincial Tourism Bureau; Professor Kaye Chon, chair professor and director of the SHTM; Mr. Tang Wenjian, chairman and president of Jinling Holdings, Ltd.; Mr. Chen Mengmeng, deputy secretary general of the Jiangsu Provincial Government; and Mr. Jiang Hongkun, mayor of the Nanjing Municipal Government.
In the keynote presentations, Professor Dai Bin, vice president of the China Tourism Academy, shared his thoughts on “The Evolution of Hotel Brand: Historical Responsibility and China Perspective.” Ms. Lily Ng, senior vice president, Jones Lang LaSalle Hotels, discussed the “China Hotel Development Trends.” Mr. Andrew Hirst, operations director, Asia, of the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group talked about the “Development Strategy in China: Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group.” Other speakers included the chairman and vice chairman of the China Tourist Hotels Association.
Prominent industry leaders and scholars attended various panel discussions covering a variety of topics including “Industry Leaders Round Table: Focusing on 2009 and Beyond,” “Development Strategies of Leading International and Domestic Brands in China,” “Brand Investment: Perspectives of Owners and Other Players,” “Developing Different Types of Hotel Brands,” and “Developing Future Leaders for the Hotel Industry.”
The 3rd International Forum on China Hotel Brand Development recorded a total attendance of 500 participants from around the world. It has truly become one of the most important events in fostering open discussion of development and management of hotel branding in China.
PolyU’s School of Hotel and Tourism Management is a leading provider of hospitality education in the Asia-Pacific Region. It is ranked no. 4 among the world’s top hotel and tourism schools based on research and scholarship, according to a study published in the Journal of Hospitality & Tourism Research in 2005.
With 60 academic staff drawing from 18 countries, the school offers programs at levels ranging from PhD to Higher Diploma. It was awarded the “2003 International Society of Travel and Tourism Educators Institutional Award” in recognition of its significant contribution to tourism education and is the only training center in the Education and Training Network in Asia recognized by the United Nations World Tourism Organization.