Over 100 hosted buyers representing leading international tour operators have arranged 1,000 meetings with exhibitors to talk business at this year’s 30th Philoxenia exhibition, one of the largest tourism sector shows in southeast Europe, set to kick off on 13-16 November at the Thessaloniki International Exhibition Center.
The spotlight this year at the annual Philoxenia and Hotelia shows will be on the potential of regional tourism and its development through joint efforts, organizers of the event told a press conference on Tuesday.
The two industry shows serve as a forum of exchange between regional market players and local tourism professionals and provides the chance to explore the business opportunities in both Greece and the wider Balkan region.
President of the Thessaloniki International Fair – Helexpo Tassos Tzikas said that tourism professionals from across the country will be participating in this year’s event, and stressed the return of the Attica and Crete regions after a long absence.
Philoxenia organizers announced an increase in the number of invited hosted buyers this year to 200 compared to 152 last year with participants representing major overseas markets such as Russia, Turkey, Bulgaria, FYROM, Egypt, Austria, Moldova, Tunisia and Indonesia.
The Hotelia show is set to run on the sidelines of Philoxenia, featuring the latest in hotel equipment, design, construction, renovation, decoration, energy-saving upgrades and other hospitality-related facilities.
Hotelia is expected this year to attract a larger number of participants and expand into larger exhibition halls. Highlight for 2014 is Dpoint Hotel Village at booth 12, an original village setting where the latest in furniture, decoration and design as well as hotel equipment is on show. At the Hotel Design Project, prominent industrial designers, architects and engineers will present their hotel room proposals.
Under the auspices of the Macedonia-Thrace ministry and the Greek National Tourism Organization (GNTO) in collaboration with other tourism associations, the three-day event will also feature a program of parallel events, including the “Destination Thessaloniki” conference, which aims to highlight Thessaloniki’s infrastructure and its prospects of becoming a leading MICE (Meetings, incentives, conferences, and exhibitions) destination.
Tourism minister Olga Kefalogianni will inaugurate the two events, Philoxenia and Hotelia, on 13 November.
*Opening hours: Thursday-Friday 11:00-20:00 only for trade visitors, Saturday 11:00-20:00 and Sunday 11:00-18:00 open to all.