BigHospitality's must-see checklist for Hotelympia 2012:
1. Awards and competitions
There are some new additions to the Hotelympia line-up for 2012. The Hot Talent competition, with BigHospitality as official media supporter, has searched for the best of the up and coming under-30s in the industry and the winners will be revealed at the Big Event on 27 February. 2012 also sees the presentation of the inaugral Design Award crowning the ultimate in hotel luxury and a change to the Innovation Awards which will see the finalists pitching to the so-called Innovation Idols before a winner is announced.
As always the Salon Culinaire will pay host to a range of display and live cooking competitions as chefs fight it out for top prizes. The British Culinary Federation will also be hosting a live cook-off as the finalists of the BCF Chef of the Year compete for the title
2. The Stage and chef demonstrations
Hotelympia has a line-up of speeches, seminars and discussions at The Stage area with service expert Fred Sirieix, the BHA's Ufi Ibrahim,critic Fay Maschler and The Fat Duck's Ashley Palmer-Watts all featuring.
Following the fallout from the TV programme last year, the Trip Advisor debate continues with a masterclass for business on the Sunday. On the Monday at 2pm serial investor Luke Johnson will take to the stage to reveal the secrets behind his business success. Plus on the Tuesday at 4pm visitors will get the chance to see an interview with the new president of the Institute of Hospitality Sir David Michels.
The Skillery, in association with the Craft Guild of Chefs, will also host live demos from chefs across the five days of the event.
3. Product launches
The latest trends are likely to be reflected in this year's batch of product launches and previews from catering suppliers of their latest bits of kit. Among the equipment to be revealed is the FlexiChef from manufacturer MXN which promises the ability to cook an entire menu with one operation, the newest oven from Rational, an innovative way to clean hotel room curtains and new powdered stock from Essential Cuisine.
As well as all our must-see picks Hotelympia 2012 promises to provide all the usual exhibitors, networking opportunities and careers, business and technology advice.
BigHospitality will be reporting direct from Hotelympia bringing you live updates and photos from the ExCel centre, all the competition and awards news as it happens and exclusive videos and interviews asking your questions to the top speakers. For the very latest from the BigHospitality team at Hotelympia you can 'like' our page on Facebook.