Konstantinos Alexopoulos, CEO of DHR Services
At DHR Services, we utilise the experience that we have gained from being present in all the cycles the country’s tourism sector has experienced over the past six decades. Our cooperation with both overseas institutional investors and leaders from the largest hotel franchise brands strengthens our vision with an international outlook, allowing us direct access to the starting point of new developments.
However, in the current situation experience, personal dedication and structured research are not enough. Now is the time to open up even more. Now is the time to open up even more. Now is the time to listen very carefully to the community.
This white paper serves to address these crucial topics, looking forward to the future while opening up productive dialogues in the present. It is time to evaluate this new era, gathering the views and predictions of leaders in the tourism and investor sector, and exploring how these two sectors will coexist with the shared goal of development.
Figures from institutional and business tourism, Greek and international financial institutions, international hotel managers, leaders of travel in Greece and overseas, and ‘technical’ participants within the sector are represented, all sharing their wealth of knowledge and experience. It is clear that the recovery is expected to be V-shaped, and that investments will play a key role in this as they bring about significant changes in the operations of the industry.
While there is intense interest from high-end investors, the country must further facilitate the inflow of funds. This can occur through the creation of a functioning legislative framework, a reduction of bureaucracy, the development of targeted infrastructure projects through the strengthening and facilitation of private initiative, aims for sustainability in strategic alignment with the axes of the ESG, the generation of a technologically advanced environment for travelers, and through investment in natural, cultural and social capital.
Yiannis Retsos : President, Greek Tourism Confederation – SETE
The pandemic permanently changes travel and tourism as we knew it. We are working towards a new tourism model based on sustainability, investments and digitalization. The need for digital transformation is dominant, while leveraging digital excellence has never been more important.
Dr Andreas A. Andreadis : CEO and co-Managing Partner, Sani/Ikos Group Honorary President, SETE
We expect a significant increase in investment activity in the Greek tourism sector, specifically focused on touristic resorts with a strong environmental sustainability program.
Grace Peters : Managing Director, EMEA Head of Investment Strategy, J.P. Morgan International Private Bank
Europe’s economy is mobility-oriented. By region, countries such as Greece and Spain, where tourism is a major component of the economy, stand to see the biggest growth boost.
Eleni Vrettou : Executive General Manager, Chief of Corporate & Investment Banking, Piraeus Bank
Investment interest is still high and is expected to further increase gradually from 2022 onwards.
George Vilos : Executive Director, Commercial & Business Development, Fraport Greece
Greece deserves a leading and sustainable position as tourist destination and we feel responsible to serve and contribute to the attainment of this goal.
Odisseas Athanasiou : CEO, LAMDA Development
Investment interest is expected to be driven by major developments. In LAMDA development, we believe that the post-pandemic era, hospitality assets will focus on safety, cleanliness, personalization, high customer experience and technological excellence.
Yiannis Paraschis : CEO, Athens International Airport SA
Strengthening “Green Tourism” through the promotion of projects that will lead to tourist facilities with zero energy footprint. The digital transformation of the travel industry on the basis of a strategic approach is key for the next day. Leverage EU funding mechanisms to enhance economic performance
Ioanna Dretta : CEO, Marketing Greece S.A.
Hospitality investment and destination marketing have a codependent relationship. Both are defining the new standards, helping destinations emerge and supporting the tourism industry in every way.
Phil Andreopoulos : COO, Owner and Franchise Services EMEA, and COO Sub-Saharan Africa and Protea, Marriott Hotels International Limited
Greece is one of the world’s leading tourism markets – a highly sought-after destination for global leisure travellers – and we are optimistic that leisure travel will quickly return.
Alan Mantin : Managing Director, Development Southern Europe, Hilton
With more than 140 hotels set to open across Continental Europe in the coming years, our development pipeline also demonstrates confidence in the longer-term future and the recovery of the industry.
Gabriel Escarrer : Vice President & CEO, Meliá Hotels International
Current investors will have a very clear preference for resort hotels, a segment in which MHI boasts both leadership and expertise.
Elie Milky : Vice President Development, Radisson Hotel Group
Bureaucratic hurdles in licensing and approvals and certifications should be streamlined, failing which investors may continue resorting to other investment hubs that are more business friendly. The current percentage of internationally branded hospitality real estate now stands below 1% of the total supply in Greece, which is the lowest across Europe. This is expected to double within the next 5 years.
Constantin Pechlivanidis : Director, Strategy and Transactions, Real Estate and Hospitality Leader, EY in Greece
Investment activity growth, first and foremost – and regardless of sector – requires a clear relevant regulatory framework. Investment, besides clarity, requires sufficient size that allows economies of scale to grow and a measure of control over risk; in the Greek hospitality sector, this is translated to well-performing resort facilities of over 150 rooms, and in locations that traditionally attract massive, mid- to upper-medium-class, demand.
Konstantinos Antonakakis : CPA / Partner, Grant Thornton Greece
Industry insights predict a strong resurgence of investment from 2022 onwards and the continuation of investment projects which were postponed due to the pandemic.
George Makripidis : Partner, Corporate Finance, PwC Greece
The recipe that worked after the sovereign crisis, with large infrastructure projects contracted to the private sector and continuous upgrade of the hospitality offering towards the upper end of the spectrum will fuel future growth and generate investor demand again. If those two components can be topped up by a stable and solid legislative environment that provides certainty and rarely changes, we can rest assured that the bid will outweigh the ask, transactions will take place at higher prices and Greece will import know how and further enhance the most important product it is known for.
Yanos Gramatidis : Honorary President, American Hellenic Chamber of Commerce Partner, Bahas, Gramatidis & Partners Law Firm, Distinguished Fellow, Global Federation of Competitiveness Councils
The explosion of touristic activity expected after the pandemic should mobilise all state authorities involved to design and implement measures that would magnify the growth of tourism taking advantage of this unique opportunity.
John Charalambakis, Ilias Georgantas : BlackSummit Financial Group : Hospitality and retirement villages: an engine of local growth. Product exists, yet the anticipated demand will require new investments as well as refurbishment of existing ones.
Vasiliki Mavrokefalou : Director Market Management Lodging Greece, Cyprus, Bulgaria & East Adriatic, Expedia Group
By coming together, we can rebuild a travel industry that is more resilient, frictionless, sustainable, and accessible.
Kallinikos Kallinikos : Executive Vice President, Goldair Group
Better airport infrastructures mean more tourists, better services, and a better experience for all the people that visit Greece.
George Polyzos : Senior Purchasing Manager, TUI
Travel & tourism has been the backbone of economies around the world. It brings in essential currency and inward investment, creates jobs and stimulates every sector.
George A. Vernicos : President, Vernicos Yachts
I am of the opinion that tourism industry will be a U shaped and the key factors affecting the market after the pandemic include the sustainability practices, technology innovation and consumer and employees confidence.
Andreas A. Stylianopoulos : CEO, Navigator Travel & Tourist Services
Destination value should be the most important consideration for all future planning, because it is the core element that determines sustainability and potential investment performance.
Konstantinos Oikonomou : CEO, Marine Tours Group of Companies
We need to push for a unified travel policy with the EU, the US and China, through which travelers will be allowed to travel with minimal hassle and no quarantine obligations. This is a “must” if we are to return to normality any time soon. To my opinion, the areas that will grow more in tourism and investments are the island and coastal areas and especially the ones with air connection and road connection vs these ones with sea connection to the major city hubs.
Sissi Lignou : CEO, AFEA
Council Member, IAPCO
Greece offers a state-of-the-art variety of convention space and conference facilities already, but at the same time there is plenty of room for further improvement and greater investments related to the Meetings Industry.
George Kyvernitis : Managing Partner, Kyvernitis Travel Group
At this stage, most investments are hospitality-oriented, but we expect to see a growth in investments related to Greek culture, enriching the travel experience, offering customized travel solutions for different types of travelers, as well as large-scale projects in career training and reskilling with an emphasis on digital skills for the travel industry.
Valentini Amarantidou : Partner & Director of Development, Artion Conferences & Events
Meetings will not stop. Their format may change and the return to “normality” will take some time; we estimate this time to be the year 2024.
You could read more about DHR Services’ “Hospitality Returns” white paper Here