“Interesting speeches, interesting people, top gala dinner, top organisation!”
Christian Laatsch, The Staytement Living GmbH
“Superb! Thank you very much. Great lectures and speakers.”
Florian Golz, Gästeresidenz PelikanViertel
“Competent industry conference! Very inspiring!”
Dirk Monreal, Kunst Raum Konzpte
Serviced Apartments on the Way out of the Niche, Sparkling Winners and a Proud Anniversary Team
The conference of the serviced apartment world, the SO!APART, took place in Berlin on 17 and 18 November 2016 and has established itself as a meeting place for the entire German-speaking market. 34 speakers and podium participants gave the growing segment a lot of input with inspiring lectures. For two days about 170 participants exchanged and discussed serviced apartments. At the gala dinner three things were celebrated: the SO!APART-Awards 2016, the company’s 15-year anniversary and the industry itself.
The insights and analyses allow only one conclusion: The local serviced apartment world is a success story of a very special kind. Since its inception, Apartmentservice has analysed the market. The figures show clearly: The industry is growing continuously.
The event kicked off with the keynote of Gerriet Danz, who took the participants on an expedition innovation. Referring to an installation at Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, where a giant dinosaur is surrounded by pink flamingos, he asked the participants, “Who do I want to be? Dinosaur or flamingo?” On the basis of countless examples, the best-selling author demonstrated how serviced apartment operators can succeed in being a “flamingo”: unique, innovative and modern.
The topics of innovation and technology developed like a common thread through the two-day event: in-house entertainment, networking possibilities for software and the large field “Apartment of The Future” were thoroughly examined. In the latter, delegates were given the opportunity to collect ideas in a co-creation think tank, which will be used to implement the project of the same name, which is led by Apartmentservice, Hotelkompetenzzentrum, JOI-Design, Adina Apartment Hotels, iHaus and G&S Planwerk and was initiated at the SO!APART 2015.
At the accompanying exhibition 20 exhibitors presented in how far their products and services help operators to achieve this goal. For example, the Swiss company SWISSFEEL presented its washable bedding system, Furniture Leasing Corporation demonstrated an opportunity to only rent furniture instead of purchasing it and Key & Card showed a personalised 24/7 check-in solution.
Industry Solutions, Transparency & Benchmarks
During the SO!APART it was shown again that one of the most important tasks of the industry remains the work on a common wording. Therefore, Apartmentservice asked for the signing of a common charter in which the signatories committ themselves to a uniform use of terms.
The industry also needs to allow more transparency and to bank on more benchmarking. In a panel discussion with bankers and operators, Holger Kuball of Deutsche Kreditbank AG underlined the importance of reliable figures as they are a key factor in developing confidence in the segment. This calls for the operators to make their own information available, as financing decisions for projects in the serviced apartment market can only be made on the basis of the collected data and benchmarks.
In addition, we are looking for industry solutions as this year showed particularly using the example of the television and radio licence fee. The goal: No less than to simplify the fee procedure until the next SO!APART.
The festive gala dinner started off with a review of 15 years of Apartmentservice. In the presence of important companions, milestones and highlights from the company’s history were presented. Afterwards there was the annual highlight of the SO!APART- the giving of the SO!APART-Awards. For the first time this year and to the surprise of all the jury gave a special award and honored the team performance and storytelling of the apartment house Gästeresidenz PelikanViertel in Hanover.
Our special thanks goes to our partners and our SO!APART-Award jury, without whom the event would not have been possible. The SO!APART 2016 was supported by renowned companies like iPartment, VISIONAPARTMENTS, SMARTMENTS business, Loewe Technologies and HotelNetSolutions. The jury – Sylvie Konzack (Chief Editor first class), Dirk Gerdom (Chief Operating Officer in Global Procurement at SAP and President of the VDR), Oliver Graue (Chief Editor BizTravel), Sabine Galas (Chief Editor of BUSINESS TRAVELLER), Till Runte (Managing Director Certified GmbH & Co. KG) – examined all submitted award applications in detail together with Anett Gregorius.
Thank you for the relentless commitment. To a good next year!
NICE TO BE A PART.