Congrats to team Tru Blu on their third place finish at this year’s hotelNEXT competition.
Said team member Hameed Mohamed:
“The competition was great. We came third place and we managed to network with many great hotel investors and CEOs. This was a great experience and we have learned a lot from this competition. This experience will never be forgotten.”
Well done. You did the Mount proud!
Mount student team among top three in the country
A team of Mount Tourism and Hospitality Management students is set to compete at the national #hotelNEXT competition in Toronto on April 24th. The annual event will take place at the Canadian Hotel Investment Conference (CHIC) which brings together hundreds of North America’s hotel industry leaders.
The conference chose the top three student teams to attend from a pool of national submissions, each presenting a different hotel renovation-based business case – the winner gets a cash prize. “It’s the biggest job interview of their lives,” says Tourism and Hospitality Management professor Dr. Candace Blayney.
This is not the first time a Mount team has reached this level in the competition (now in its third year). In 2016, Mount Tourism and Hospitality Management students Sarah O’Connor and Evangeline Sing placed second overall with their pitch of a wine-culture inspired hotel for the Annapolis Valley.
The ultimate challenge
Their final pitch is based on demolishing an existing Halifax hotel and re-branding under the international chain Tru by Hilton (which is also the inspiration behind their Mount-spirited team name, “Tru Blu”). The hotel would be rebuilt to include 98 rooms and feature unique ties to local businesses and community. Beyond that, the team is tight-lipped. They’re keeping the details of their pitch under-wraps until competition day, but did reveal that their idea is truly “one-of-a-kind”; Hilton representatives will be in attendance to hear their pitch.
Hameed is confident in the group’s chances in the competition. “We really dedicated ourselves and put all our effort in,” he explains.
“It is a huge challenge,” adds Dulendra. “But we have brought our best to it.”
The group is very grateful to Dr. Blayney (pictured with student team members below) for her support and mentorship throughout the process. “Dr. Blayney gave us this opportunity and has always being willing to help,” says Hameed. “She gave us tons of information to help us put this together,” adds Sara.
The team is also benefited from the support of Mount finance professor Dr. Mohammad Siddiquee. “Strong financials is a big part of what investors are looking for,” explains Dr. Blayney. “We were grateful to have his help perfecting the numbers.”
A network of support