IAAPA celebrated a successful IAAPA Leadership Conference in Abu Dhabi/Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 26-28 February 2019. More than 200 top-level attractions industry leaders gathered for the ninth annual event complete with thought-provoking presentations, unique networking opportunities, and exclusive behind-the scenes tours of several of the region’s most popular attractions.
Conference attendees toured many of the region’s most popular attractions, including Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi, Louvre Abu Dhabi, IMG Worlds of Adventure, Global Village Dubai, La Perle, and Laguna Water Park – La Mer. In addition, participants toured the Expo 2020 Dubai festival park site.
Attendees heard from attractions industry leaders in the Middle East including keynote speaker Marjan Faraidooni, senior vice president, Legacy Development and Impact, Expo 2020 Dubai, who shared Expo 2020 Dubai’s goals to leave a positive, sustainable, and enduring legacy. Phil Taylor, managing director of Team Leisure — a specialist leisure-consulting firm based in the United Arab Emirates — discussed future trends in the attractions industry in the Middle East.
Additional speakers included Markus Mack-Even, chief project officer city of Arabia and general manager of IMG Worlds of Adventure; Clive Stephens, deputy chief operations officer, Expo 2020 Dubai; Dr. Robert Platt, vice president, site design integration, Expo 2020 Dubai; Mona Al Ali, content manager of the Sustainability Pavilion at Expo 2020; Ali Al Suwaidi, chief operating officer of Global Village; Mark Gsellman, vice president, theme parks at Farah Experiences; Bader Anwahi, chief executive officer, Global Village; Ahmad Hussain, deputy chief executive officer, DXB Entertainments; and Saeed Al Saeed, destination marketing director, Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi.
Plans are already underway for IAAPA Leadership Conference 2020 which will be held in the United States. Information about IAAPA Leadership 2020 will be available on www.IAAPA.org later this year.