Best Stay Event speaker, Jonathan Riff, recollects the moment of honor

In a business where networking is everything, success can be even harder to come by. To succeed in the hotel and travel industry takes commitment and forward thinking. One has to be willing to play the long game as there are no shortcuts when it comes to hotels. Boutique hotels, in particular, evoke a special kind of luxury and needs a keen and dedicated entrepreneur. Best Stay has been coordinating networking events on a grand scale for hoteliers, designers, and investors alike. If you are looking to find the best in the business, you will find them at their events. Best Stay offers all types of hospitality professionals the opportunity to build their network and effectively grow their business through the sharing of ideas and expertise. It's where the top hoteliers go to learn and refine their strategies.

The event consists of speaker presentations, hosted lunch and dinners, speed networking, and of course, an after-party, and most professionals agreethat this is one of the best hospitality events of the year. One speaker, in particular, captivated the audience with the success of his luxury boutique hotel, which he opened in the quiet fishing village of Zaton, Croatia. After a personal trip to Croatia, Jonathan Riff was so inspired by the beauty of the country that he returned with the desire to build a hotel. After months of research and planning he settled on the picturesque fishing village of Zaton.

Along with his wife, Megan, he renovated an old Communist social house into an 18-room boutique hotel, known as The Admiral Zaton. Jonathan states, "We noticed the need for hotel accommodation in Zaton, and we had our vision." That vision paid off, The Admiral Zaton was recognized worldwide through press and awards as the best hotel in the region.

Following the success of his wildly popular hotel, Riff was invited to speak at the Best Stay Event, an honor he remembers fondly. "Getting the chance to present to my most respected peers is an honor I will never forget." Jonathan explains, "our vision was not just about bringing a boutique hotel to one small town in Croatia, we wish to bring similar properties to numerous other towns that also have a lot to offer to tourists." Jonathan has a good eye for potential, his success with The Admiral Zaton was unique as it blended into the community and the culture seamlessly, while also increasing tourism in the region by 100% each season. His strategy was well-received and respected by his colleagues because it represented a win-win for both locals and tourists alike — the perfect combination.

Jonathan's strategy proves that successful tourism does not have to intrude on local values. While The Admiral Zaton ceased operations in January 2019 after the property was auctioned off the brand continues to have power. In an unforeseen turn of events, the new owner decided to revoke their lease, but its legacy is forever. Jonathan has big plans for The Admiral brand, with concepts already prepared.