Accor, NRL sign three-year deal and hotel chain reveals plans for Melbourne

By Sarah Stowe | 19 May 2021 View comments

Hotel chain Accor has signed a three-year deal with the NRL and will provide accommodation for the athletes of the footy code.

Accor Pacific CEO Simon McGrath said the partnership between the two organisations was a collaboration that will help the travel industry get back on its feet.

“Both sport and tourism have faced significant disruption throughout 2020; through this partnership the travel industry will work together with the NRL to deliver games for athletes and fans,” he said.

“Every year, Australia hosts many sporting events that people attend from all over the world. Sport is a huge draw for tourists and supporters both domestically and internationally and has been a significant factor in our country’s success.”

McGrath referenced the role of sport in Australian culture as a lever to boost the economy.

“By tourism and sporting organisations working together, consumers will enjoy incredible experiences. Sporting events will help to revitalise the travel industry and energise our economy, encouraging people to travel once again.”

Andrew Abdo, CEO for the NRL echoed the message that the deal is creating jobs and helping local businesses and communities across Australia.

“The return of sporting events will help our economy recover quickly and boost the common welfare of our regions and great cities. People have been starved of live games, experiences and travel, and we know people are keen to reconnect,” he said.

“Teaming up with Accor and signing this deal signals our commitment to aiding our nation’s rapid recovery. We cannot wait to welcome our fans back.”

News of the freshly-minted deal comes just days after McGrath announced a new era of hotels opening in Melbourne to help drive city tourism prior to the re-opening of international travel.

 McGrath forecasts that leisure travel will see a V shaped recovery.

 “Melbourne is one of the world’s greatest cities and, over the next two years, we are bringing eight hotels and 1,583 rooms to the city, which is an investment of over $700 million by a variety of owners. This will create around 600 jobs, whilst boosting the appeal of the city and the quality of accommodation available,” he said.

“As well as the new Mövenpick hotel, which will open in June, we will be opening new hotels which include SO/, 25hours, Mercure and Peppers – before the end of 2023. These new properties will complement our current portfolio of 43 hotels in Melbourne, offering even greater choice for travellers.”