Pre-Show Report: International Hotel/Motel & Restaurant Show, November 8-11, 2008, New York City

  • IH/M&RS
  • 07.16.08
Cutting-edge new products, seminars addressing hot button topics and networking opportunities with industry trend-setters will define the 93rd annual International Hotel/Motel & Restaurant Show® (IH/M&RS), taking place November 8-11, 2008, at New York City's Jacob K. Javits Convention Center.

More than 1,250 exhibitors will draw a crowd of 35,000 professionals to one of the industry's top markets for trend discovery and professional development. 

With an impressive roster of high profile industry leaders, owners and operators in attendance, the IH/M&RS is a premier venue for purchasing decisions, networking with key decision makers and information sharing. Exhibitors representing all vertical markets within the hospitality industry - including food and beverage, furnishings, technology, equipment, linens, amenities, tableware, cleaning and more - will showcase their innovative products and services to some of the industry's most influential buyers, including lodging and restaurant owners and operators, purchasing companies, owner groups, design firms, catering and specialty foodservice establishments, equipment dealerships, casinos, resorts and more.
"The IH/M&RS is the top annual opportunity for industry leaders to learn business trends, make key purchasing decisions, and gain perspective from colleagues. This is the market to not only source new and exciting products, but to gain insight from the industry's elite," said Lynn White, IH/M&RS manager.

Show highlights include:

  • Sustainability focus:
    With awareness of sustainable products, green operations and the carbon footprint of properties at an all-time high, the IH/M&RS will offer support of the environmental movement both on and off the show floor. A keynote presentation will be presented by former U.S. Green Building Council President and CEO Christine Ervin, while breakout seminars will address the latest environmental trends and issues facing the industry. In addition, the return of the Green Restaurant Association Pavilion and eco-friendly Editors' Choice Awards will call attention to must-see products on the show floor.
  • Destination Design™: 
    The International Hotel/Motel & Restaurant Show once again will serve as a top destination for hospitality designers, as Destination Design returns for a third consecutive year to feature a dedicated educational track, new resources within the show's acclaimed Luxury Product Collection and networking with top designers at the Gold Key Awards for Excellence in Hospitality Design.
  • Key industry groups:
    Supporting its reputation as a high profile market attracting special interest groups, the 2008 IH/M&RS will serve as a meeting venue for two new groups recently formed by the American Hotel & Lodging Association - Under 30 Gateway and Women in Lodging. Both groups will convene in New York City during the IH/M&RS and will each present a seminar addressing a topic of interest to their demographic. In addition, the U.S. Air Force and U.S. Navy will send more than 500 attendees from their base lodges around the world to the show for purchasing, education and networking opportunities.
  • Education:
    More than 40 seminars of interest to both lodging and foodservice professionals will highlight the 93rd annual IH/M&RS, addressing such topics as sustainability, design, technology, sales and marketing, human resources and more. Educational sessions will begin on Saturday, November 8, 2008, with the Hospitality Leadership Forum - a full-day conference for senior level hospitality managers. Additional programs and culinary demonstrations will take place throughout Sunday, November 9, 2008, and Monday, November 10, 2008. A complete list of programs will be available online at, beginning in September. 
  • Exhibits and demonstrations: 
    The Salon of Culinary Art will return with live cooking demonstrations, culinary competitions and more than 300 captivating food as art displays. The 140th annual Salon, presented by the Société Culinaire Philanthropique, will feature master chefs, pastry chefs, bakers, butchers, culinarians and apprentices from around the world competing in several categories. The exhibit showcases fancy buffet tables, decorated fish and poultry, pastry work and other creatively prepared foods. The Salon of Culinary Art will relocate to the main show floor in 2008, drawing attention to this top attraction of the IH/M&RS. 
  • Awards:
    - Gold Key Awards for Excellence in Hospitality Design
    The Gold Key Awards for Excellence in Hospitality Design will return to the IH/M&RS to honor outstanding designers in eight categories - restaurants/casual dining, restaurants/fine dining, lounge/bar, best hotel design, guest room, suites, lobby/reception area and spa. Highlighting the 28th annual event will be the presentation of the Designer of the Year Award by Gold Key Awards sponsors Interior Design and HOTELS magazines, as well as the Icon of Industry Award, presented this year to Roger Milliken by NEWH, Inc., the Hospitality Industry Network. Gold Key Award grand prize winners and finalists will be honored during a breakfast ceremony at New York City's Mandarin Oriental Hotel on Monday, November 10, 2008, from 7:30 - 9:30 a.m. The event serves as a scholarship fundraiser for NEWH. Tickets are $75.00 each, and available online at
    - Editors' Choice Awards
    The 13th annual Editors' Choice Awards will spotlight some of the best new products introduced to the market in the past year. Awards will be presented in the areas of décor, essentials, luxury, restaurant (including flavors) and technology, as well as an eco-friendly equivalent to each of these categories. In addition, the Kenneth F. Hine Best of Show Award will spotlight the top new product on the show floor. Editors from the leading hospitality and foodservice trade publications, as well as a representative from the Green Restaurant Association, will review approximately 200 submissions and select outstanding new products based on innovative product design, how a product answers a particular industry need, creative use of material or construction, and development or use of a new technology. Winners of this coveted recognition will be announced during the opening ceremony at 9:45 a.m., on Sunday, November 9, 2008.

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