Sandi Reily Sandi Reily

New face at Hospitality NZ

Hospitality New Zealand has appointed Sandi Reily as marketing, events and communications manager.

Reily comes from thirteen years in the leisure travel market across Australasia and the US where she has worked with tourism and hospitality stakeholders in New Zealand, Fiji and the Cook Islands. The last five years have seen her set up an office in the US, from where she has promoted New Zealand businesses.

‘Working with New Zealand business owners and seeing them thrive is what motivates me,’ says Reily.

Over her career Reily has earned accolades including being selected by Tourism NZ as a partner for the Tuku Iho Smithsonian Washington DC market launch. She is a Westpac Business Awards Finalist, was named a Cook Islands Tourism Market Innovator and is a Fiji Tourism Excellence Award Finalist.

Hospitality NZ chief executive Julie White says Reily is arriving at the right time for her members.

‘Her expertise will be invaluable as we strive to represent our members’ interests and help them navigate the coming months as they recover from Covid-19.’

Grasp every opportunity

Meantime, Julie White describes the opening of a trans-Tasman bubble as ‘wonderful news’ for struggling hospitality and accommodation businesses.

‘Now it’s a matter of grasping every opportunity the expected influx of Australian visitors and Kiwis returning to visit family will bring their way.

‘Australians typically comprise the biggest chunk of our incoming visitor market, accounting for 39% and spending $2.7 billion in 2019, and though it would be too much to expect it to get back to anywhere near that level for quite some time, I’m optimistic this will be enough to save some of our hospitality businesses.

‘Winter’s coming, and after many businesses suffered from a disappointing summer, telling us in a survey that lack of revenue was their number one issue, it’s crucial they grab every opportunity.

‘We’ve got our ski season coming up, so we’re hoping winter will not be as dark as some businesses were fearing.

‘The test will be to see if we can keep the bubble open. It’s time we learned to live with a bit of risk. We need to balance the health risk with the wider economic risk.’

‘We welcome the Government’s three-stage traffic light plan of continue, pause, and suspend as part of learning to live with Covid.

‘It’s crucial for businesses, families, and the wider economy that we accept some risk and stay open.’