NATIONAL INSTITUTION FOR THE ORGANISATION OF EXHIBITIONS, CONGRESSES AND CULTURAL EVENTS

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Philoxenia-Hotelia: The largest tourism event in the Balkans 46% increase in visitor numbers 91% increase in trade visitor numbers

The exhibition 'duo' of Philoxenia-Hotelia, which ended yesterday, was established as the largest tourism event in the Balkans. Given the significant increase in the qualitative and quantitative scale of the two exhibitions, their leading role in the region was confirmed in practice.

The total number of visitors welcomed by the two exhibitions rose by 46% compared to last year's event, with over 20,000 individuals visiting the events, while the number of trade visitors almost doubled, marking a 91% increase, with a 70% increase in hosted buyers.

Over 5,500 B2B meetings were held between trade visitors and exhibitors within just three days, paving the way for the conclusion of business deals. The 621 exhibitors, 383 hosted buyers from 34 countries and over 20,000 square metres of exhibition space covered completed the profile of Philoxenia and Hotelia, which were the largest events held in the last five years.

The 'menu' of parallel events held in the context of the two exhibitions was particularly rich, attracting not only trade visitors but the general public as well. The International Tourism Congress '[re]branding Destinations: Image making', held in the context of Philoxenia, was a resounding success, attracting hundreds of participants, mostly young in age, who packed 'Emilios Riadis' Hall in order to listen to top Greek and international speakers analyse the particularly important issue of branding of tourism destinations, in accordance with contemporary needs.

The sponsors of the Philoxenia congress were Mouzenidis Travel & Ellinair Group (accommodation), ΑCT-American College of Thessaloniki (coffee break), Domotel (catering) and the Transfer for All company (transports). After the completion of the sessions, the 'Destination Thessaloniki 2020' interactive workshop was held and also met with great success.

The seminar titled ‘Outgoing Tourism from China: (almost) everything you’d like to know’, organised by TIF-Helexpo in cooperation with Tourism Generis, presented the significant prospects that the Chinese tourism market has for Greece. Dozens of events of tourism interest were organised by agencies from all over the country in the context of Philoxenia, presenting the identity of Greek tourism and highlighting its need and prospects.

One point of attraction for visitors was the 'DPOINT Spaces' thematic section of Hotelia, which featured the green zero hotel, future boutique and rent a design room that, apart from offering aesthetic excellence, were also exceptionally interesting proposals in the fields of architecture and tourism.

The thematic section 'THE ART OF DRINKING Coffee & Spirit' of Hotelia included dozens of events presenting all modern trends in the sector, while the section 'The art of dining' featured dining events that presented the flavourful character of the event, with live presentations of global gastronomic trends.

Philoxenia and Hotelia were held under the auspices of the Ministry of Tourism, the Ministry of Interior (Macedonia-Thrace), the Greek National Tourism Organisation (EOT), as well as all the major tourism agencies of the country, such as the Greek Tourism Confederation (SETE), the Hellenic Chamber of Hotels (XEE), the Hellenic Association of Travel and Tourist Agencies (HATTA) and the Hellenic Hotel Federation (POX). The official air carrier of the 32nd Philoxenia was Qatar Airways.