It’s touted as the annual trade fair where the UK hospitality industry comes together to network, listen, focus and source the very latest in food and drink, catering equipment, retail interiors and technology. With well over 250 exhibitors this year, The Hospitality Show at the NEC Birmingham is a must-attend event for any hotelier, restaurateur, publican, café or deli owner looking for new products and ideas for their business.
Miles of floor space dedicated to enthusiastic exhibitors demonstrating new and exciting innovative products for the trade. Whether you are a hotelier or a cocktail bar concept, every industry was present, all with their own unique take on how and what you might do differently to make customers feel that bit more special.
Staff Canteen Live debuted this year which showcased notable chef demonstrations using the latest in the hospitality industry’s ground-breaking products to an eager and hungry crowd. From Adam Stokes of Michelin-starred Adams in Birmingham to Gary Jones of Le Manoir aux Quat Saisons, this new addition to the show left audiences captivated and mesmerised.
Each year I look forward to attending the seminar series at The Hospitality Show – I always find it inspiring. This year I had the pleasure of attending an interview and panel discussion with Derek Taylor OBE – hosted by Peter Ducker, Chief Executive of the Institute of Hospitality since 2013. Mr Taylor, who studied at Cambridge University was a pioneer of sales and marketing strategy for the Grand Metropolitan and Inter Continental brands. He’s basically considered a guru in the hospitality industry.
If you’ve ever felt the need for a “short break holiday,” thank Derek Taylor, because he introduced the idea some 50 years ago when the work week went from 5.5 days a week to 5! Derek saw this gap of two days as a gateway to this and many other fabulous ideas that we still enjoy today. To quote Derek, “…selling something is solving someone’s problems in an aspirational way…” Words to live by if you ask me!!
If you’ve yet to visit the show yourself, check the Hospitality Show website out online and get 2016 dates in your diary now. You’ll find a bevy of movers and shakers, innovators and manufactures creating essential building blocks for our industry no matter which business you have. You never know, some of it might just rub off on us.