AUSTRALIA’S leading accommodation groups have lost faith with the Australian Hotels Association as a political lobby group and will throw their weight behind the Hotel Motel & Accommodation Association. Groups involved in the split include Accor, Toga, Hilton and Mirvac. The schism has been caused by disenchantment with AHA’s focus on pubs and liquor-based issues.
A tipping point was the zero government funding the tourism industry received during the GFC. “We want to start our own lobby group,” said Simon McGrath, Vice President of Accor Australia. He also said the AHA liquor licence focus meant the interests of fast-growing groups such as Stella and Quest could not be represented.
Toga boss Rachel Argaman said: “We have committed all our hotels to the HMAA. It would be wonderful to have one united body representing the Australian accommodation industry.”