Interview with the President of the Hellenic Hoteliers Federation, Mr. Grigoris Tasios:
“Attica consistently strengthens its position on the world tourism map”
1. Mr. Tasios, which are the issues that arise for hoteliers in the forthcoming tourist season of 2021?
The question is how we will get there, in the sense that the hotels which operate on a 12-month basis currently have no occupancy and for 2021 there is no optimistic evidence, even though several agreements for the following season have already been signed. However, there is great concern about the distribution networks, i.e. the online sales, airlines, tour operators; who will survive and how. In this context and given the significant losses of 2020, hotels are confronted with the challenge of survival. And survival cannot mean loans. All financial tools that are already available and the new that will originate from European resources should be oriented towards breathing life into the hotel sector. With composure and a “Survival Fund”, we can build resilience to win the future.
2. In your opinion, what is the next day in the hospitality industry?
The “next day” is the next five years. The blow was and still is severe. It will take five years of hard work and great effort to manage to return to the revenues of the 2018 and 2019 seasons.
3. Which will be the travel trends for the following year, in your opinion?
The trends are two and contradictory. Those who can afford it will opt for individual travelling, nature tourism and accommodation in smaller hotel units. On the other hand, Europe’s economic indicators are not going to be favourable and solutions will be sought, adjusted accordingly. Therefore, the mass tourism model which means low-cost airticket and hotel room will surely be preferred in the European market.
4. Attica boasts 5 star hotels, awarded restaurants and a range of exclusive services for luxury and comfort. What is your opinion on exclusive travel in Attica?
Over the last decade, Athens and Attica have proved that joint effort and collaboration among all interested parties bears fruit. Attica consistently strengthens its position on the world tourism map, which is certainly highlighted by the 2018 and 2019 tourist traffic records it broke. To maintain and further reinforce this position, Athens and Attica on the whole should offer the entire spectrum of services to every visitor. In this context, indeed exclusive travel emerges as one of the most profitable sources for the city and the whole Region.
5. How would you comment on the Region of Attica’s tourism slogan “Attica – Greece in a Snapshot”? What would you suggest a visitor should do upon arrival in Attica?
The Region of Attica’s slogan says it all. Apart from the Acropolis and the Acropolis Museum that are obvious “musts”, my suggestion to visitors is to devote as many days as possible touring the region, in order to truly comprehend that it is a 4-season destination.
6. Do you have a favourite spot that you like to visit every time you come to Attica?
Athens city centre, which is where the headquarters of our Federation are located. So at any given opportunity, I choose one of the very beautiful hotel roof gardens downtown Athens, for a business or casual drink.
Photo: Panos Konios