Bournemouth University

School of Tourism

Tourism experts collaborate with global chain Group Pestana

Date: 1 March 2011

A group of experts from Bournemouth University (BU) have joined up with Group Pestana, one of the largest hotel chains in Europe, in a brand new collaborative project.

Lead by Professor Dimitrios Buhalis, the group from BU's School of Tourism, which also includes Dr Peter Lugosi, Jeff Sadd and John Fotis, travelled to Pousada of Porto, Portugal, this month to deliver training to Pestana's senior managers and board members.

A total of 160 members of staff from Pestana's 85 hotels took part in the training, which covered key themes such as global trends and issues, strategic responses for the hospitality industry, marketing, social media and sales, financial management and leadership and human resources for the hospitality industry.

Professor Buhalis said: "The training provided a great opportunity to interact with the very knowledgeable Board and managers of Group Pestana in order to explore trends and issues of the future, and also in order to identify strategies that will take the group forward in terms of strategic marketing, social media, financial management and leadership and human resources management."

The training also saw the start of a collaboration between Group Pestana and the BU team. During their visit to Portugal, Professor Buhalis's team met with Dr Dionisio Pestana, founder and owner of the Pestana Group, to discuss the key strategies that will enable the group to differentiate themselves and achieve competitive advantages, as well as to explore a strategic partnership between the two organisations.

Professor Buhalis added: "The collaboration will be centred around a contribution from Group Pestana in our training and teaching, in addition the group will have access to the cutting edge research and innovations that we are developing at the International Centre for Tourism and Hospitality Research at BU."

The Pestana Group is Portugal's largest tourism and leisure group, and through its chain, Pestana Hotels & Resorts, currently manages 44 hotels across 10 countries, in addition to the 42 Pousadas of Portugal. Their portfolio includes properties around the world with the Pestana Chelsea Bridge property in London as the flagship of the Internationalisation of the group.