Independent Hotel Show set to reunite the boutique hotelier community


Independent Hotel Show will return to Olympia London on 4-5 October for two days of valuable networking, industry leading content and over 200 hand-curated suppliers. We discover what we can expect from the leading exhibition for the boutique, luxury, lifestyle sector.

As the only UK event catering directly to the independent and boutique hotel industry, the Independent Hotel Show offers guests direct access to quality hospitality products and opportunities to discuss and debate key issues affecting the sector.

Held across two days from October 4 to 5, the exhibition is back at Olympia after more than a year on pause due to the pandemic, and will bring together the leading lights of hospitality to network, share ideas and soak up new innovations taking the industry by storm.

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A new addition to the event for 2021 is The Concept Lab, which features unique, innovative suppliers including luxury perfume house Ascetic Aesthete, Orbit4, an ecosystem for commercial fitness products, wearable air purifier Respiray and more.

Another new feature for this year is The Tech Solutions Bar in partnership with HOSPA, which will provide guests at the show with bespoke, one-on-one, objective advice and guidance on hospitality technology. Experts at the Bar include Ali Powell, CEO of Commercial Acceleration, technology consultant Jim Cockell and Penn Chai of Castle Hotel Windsor.

The Innovation Stage

The Innovation Stage, in partnership with eviivo, dressed by and with art by Aster Muro, will be hosting a wide range of industry discuss and debate, from the latest trends and thought leadership to vital issues and challenges set to determine the future of the hospitality.

Day One will see sessions on topics including sensory design, the Covid-related changes which have benefitted hoteliers, utilising customer data, building strong membership models and creating effective sustainability strategies that encompass local community, environment, governance and more.

Philippa Hughes, Managing Director of the Bull Inn Totnes and panellist for ‘the ESG: Building an effective sustainability strategy’ session, comments: “From my perspective, hospitality should be leading the field in sustainable and ethical businesses practices – we are in a unique position to influence market forces, trends and thinking – it really is a no-brainer. Any business that isn’t integrating these approaches into their models is not only not doing the right thing ecologically, but from the perspective of innovation and customer desirability they might find themselves getting left behind.”

Day Two of the event will kick off with a key session on the future of hospitality, hosted by Robert Richardson FIH, CEO of the Institute of Hospitality, which will cover everything from the staffing crisis, and improving public perception of the hospitality industry as a valuable and fulfilling career choice, to post-pandemic recovery. He will be joined by panellists Sally Beck, General Manager at Royal Lancaster London, Kathy Dyball, Brand Director at, Chris Gamm, CEO of Springboard and Julia Sibley MBE, Chief Executive of The Savoy Educational Trust.

Richardson says: “For me, no other industry exists purely to bring out the best in people. As hospitality resets, and rebuilds, our future is our people, and that is why I am delighted and excited to lead this valuable panel discussion, with some incredible icons of our industry!”

A popular returning feature is the Social Business Space, designed by Aorta, which will once again host hoteliers for informal, campfire-style sessions, providing an opportunity to discuss key trends and challenges with peers and fellow independent hotel operators.

Peter Hancock MI, Chief Executive of Pride of Britain Hotels, will host a discussion on kickstarting urban hotels and encouraging a return to city tourism and business travel, while Custard Communications’ founder Petra Clayton will host ‘Hotel Marketing 101’, looking at the fads and future trends in the world of marketing for independent hotels.

Hancock comments: “Wild horses could not keep me away from the Independent Hotel Show this year, firstly because it’s one of the most informative events our industry has to offer and secondly because I am lucky enough to be involved in the awards presentations on 4 October. Wise hoteliers from all over the UK will be there to learn from their peers and from other industry experts in a stylish and pleasant setting. What’s not to like?”

Other sessions across the two days of the event will include discussions on domestic tourism, recruitment and retention and using data for effective benchmarking, hosted by STR.

On Monday 4 October the Independent Hotel Show Awards will return, celebrating outstanding individuals in hospitality across two categories: Independent Hotelier and GM of the Future, in partnership with The Master Innholders. The winners will be revealed live at the event alongside a celebration of the ten winners of the Good Hotel Guide’s Cesar Award.

This year’s event will see the launch of an innovative new year-round digital platform for the global independent hotel market – IH Connects.

To learn more about Independent Hotel Show 2021, and to register for your complimentary pass, visit

Visit Boutique Hotelier on stand 1011

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Zoe Monk

The author Zoe Monk

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