What’s on at Here to Stay 2022

What’s on at Here to Stay 2022

Explore the ASTRA Here To Stay Conference 2022 provisional program.

Trade Exhibitors

Speakers

Here to Stay is a two-day conference run by the industry for the industry.

Eric Bergaglia

Senior Director Accommodations Segment of Booking.com
Sponsor

Rebecca Cribbin

Founder & CEO of Holiday Rental Specialists & Holiday Rental Experts
Sponsor

Caspar P. Schmidt

Managing Director, QCC Collection Group Pty Ltd

Jodie Mansell

Senior Account Executive of HomSure

Erin Stevenson

COO 'NewBook'

Toby Sconce

PM Team Manager - Expedia Group

Rebecca Thompson

Director, Ocean Edge Holiday Rentals

Lisa Peterson

Owner/Founder 'L'Abode Accommodation'

Quirin Schwaighofer

Co-Founder & Co-CEO 'MadeComfy'

Bart Sobies

Founder & CEO 'ibooked.online'

Julie George

Author, “Million Dollar Host”

Will Creedon

Founder of 'Alloggio Group'

Jon Lawry

CEO The Urban Butler

Bodie Ten Buuren

Manager National Surveys & Data Science Section

Yoav Tourel

Managing Director - Guesty

Pete Smith

Founder & MD Weekenda

Nick Ellis

Innovation Manager - Spicers

Sarah Workman

Manager - Strategy & Growth of A Perfect Stay Pty Ltd

Rob Dougan

EGM Strategy & Research for Tourism Australia

Eacham Curry

Senior Director, Government & Corporate Affairs, Asia-Pacific of Expedia Group

Tim Mortimer

Founder & CEO of BNB Made Easy

William Crock

Founder / CEO of Hometime Group

David Whelan

CEO of Urban Rest Apartments

Tracey Northcott

Tokyo Family Stays/Tracey Northcott Consulting

Sabrina Schwaighofer

Co-Founder and Co-CEO of MadeComfy

Theron Lewis

Founder of STR Hero

Steve Keir

Co Founder & CEO of Hotelesque

Rob Jeffress

Chair ASTRA

Sam Steel

Co-Founder of Resly

Sylvia Johnston

Joint CEO HiRUM Software Solutions

David Harris

Owner Manager of Aussie Chillout

Hayden D’Arcy

(Director, HomHero

Phil Spyrou

Owner, Swainson Apartments

Chris de Closey

Co-Founder & Director Coastal Letting Co & Holiday Management Co

Monday 10 October 2022

Time

Topic

Speakers

Welcome

Morning Session

8:30 – 9:00

  • Welcome by Julie George (Million Dollar Host) inc. Welcome to Country
  • Welcome by Rob Jeffress
  • Julie George &
  • Rob Jeffress (HomHero)

9:00 – 9:15

  • Welcome
  • Matt Landau (VRMB)

9:15 – 10:00

  • International Guests: Insights on the inbound traveller from Tourism Australia
  • Robert Dougan (Australian Tourism)

10:00 – 10:30

  • Round Table: What is the biggest issue your business faces?
  • Julie George

10:30 – 11:00 Morning Tea

Regulations - Professionalism

Lunch Session

11:00 – 11:45

  • Panel: How do we lobby and influence government and community in the right way?
  • Moderator: Yoav Tourel (Guesty)
  • Rob Jeffress (HomHero)
  • Eacham Curry (Expedia Group)
  • Theron Lewis (Capitol Rental Management LLC)
  • Sarah Workman (A Perfect Stay)

11:45 – 12:30

  • Panel: Professionalism of STRA – strategies to step up your game
  • Moderator: Pete Smith (Weekenda)
  • Caspar Schmidt (QCC Collection Group)
  • Jodie Mansell (HomSure)
  • Tracey Northcott (Tracey Northcott Consulting)
  • Yoav Tourel (Guesty)

12:30 – 13:30 Lunch

Marketing & Distribution

Afternoon Session

13:30 – 14:15

  • Building a STRA Brand
  • Jon Lawry (Urban Butler)

14:15 – 15:00

  • Panel: How are different operators using technology in their business?
  • Moderator: Chris de Closey (Coastal Letting Co.)
  • Erin Stevenson (Newbook)
  • Sylvia Johnston (HiRUM)
  • Nick Ellis (Spicers)
  • William Crock (Hometime)

15:00 – 15:30 Afternoon Tea

Technology

Night Session

15:30 – 16:00

  • Book Direct – A blue ocean opportunity – what you need to look at next
  • Bart Sobies (ibooked online)

16:00 – 16:45

  • Panel: OTAs and Tech – what the future holds in 2023?
  • Moderator: Sam Steel (Resly)
  • Eric Bergaglia (Booking.com)
  • Toby Sconce (VRBO)
  • Hayden D’Arcy (HomHero)

18:30

  • Coach departs Southport Sharks Event Centre to Cocktail Gala

19:00 – 22:00

  • 2022 Astra Cocktail Gala 

Location:

The Island Gold Coast – Glasshouse

Tuesday 11 October 2022

Time

Topic

Speakers

ASTRA and the future

Morning Session

9:00 – 9:30

  • STR Past, Present & Future?

  • Eric Bergaglia (Booking.com)

9:30 – 10:00

  • Australian Tourism Statistics Measurement and Insights into Short-Term Rental Accommodation
  • Bode Ten Buuren (Austrade)

10:00 – 10:30 Morning Tea

10:30 – 11:00

  • Round Table: Establishing the future of ASTRA as an peak industry body – what do we need?
  • Julie George

11:00 – 11:30

  • Panel: Q&A session with ASTRA board – tackling top priorities
  • Moderator: David Harris (Aussie Chillout)
  • Yoav Tourel (Guesty)
  • Rob Jeffress (HomHero)
  • Bart Sobies (ibooked online)
  • Jon Lawry (The Urban Butler)
  • Phil Spyrou (Swainson Apartments)

Guest Experience

Lunch Session

11:30 – 12:30

  • Panel: Providing exceptional 5 star guest experience in 2023
  • Moderator: David Whelan (Urban Rest)
  • Sabrina Schwaighofer (MadeComfy)
  • Lisa Peterson (L’Abode Accommodation Specialists)
  • Tim Mortimer (BNB Made Easy)
  • Rebecca Thompson (Ocean Edge)

12:30 – 13:30 Lunch

Business Operations

Afternoon Session

13:30 – 14:15

  • The Problems We Face When Scaling And How To Overcome Them?

  • Quirin Schwaighofer (MadeComfy)

14:15 – 15:00

  • Panel: Improving your profitability in STRA – how to keep an eye on your ROI
  • Moderator: Julie George
  • Will Creedon (Alloggio)
  • Steve Keir (Hotelesque)
  • David Whelan (Urbanrest)
  • Pete Smith (Weekenda)

15:00 – 15:30

  • Show Me the Money and How to Still Have Time for Fun?

  • Rebecca Cribbin (Holiday Rental Experts)

15:30 – 16:00

  • Official Conference Close & Closing Remarks
  • Closing Video
  • Julie George
  • Simon Lehmann (AJL Atelier)

16:00 – 16:30 Afternoon Tea & Conference Conclusion

Speakers

Speaker

Title

Company

Bart Sobies

CEO & Founder

ibooked.online

Bode Ten Buuren

Manager of National Surveys & Data Science Branch

Austrade

Caspar Schmidt

Founder & Managing Director

QCC Collection Group Pty Ltd

Chris de Closey

Co-Founder & Director

Coastal letting Co & Holiday Management Co

David Whelan

CEO

Urban Rest

David Harris

Owner

Aussie Chillout

Eacham Curry 

Director, Government & Corporate Affairs

Expedia Group

Eric Bergaglia

Senior Director – Global Head of Accommodations Segments

Booking.com

Erin Stevenson

Chief Operations Officer

Newbook Pty Ltd

Hayden D’Arcy

Director

HomHero

Jon Lawry

CEO

Urban Butler

Jodie Mansell

Senior Account Executive

HomSure

Julie George

Author

“Million Dollar Host”

Lisa Peterson

Owner & Founder

L’Abode Accommodation Specialists

Matt Landau 

CEO

VRMB

Nick Ellis

Innovation Manager

Spicers

Peter Smith

Founder & CEO

Weekenda

Phil Spyrou

Owner

Swainson Apartments

Quirin Schwaighofer

Co-CEO & Co-Founder

MadeComfy

Rebecca Cribbin 

Founder & CEO

Holiday Rental Specialists

Holiday Rental Experts

Rebecca Thompson

Director & Owner

Ocean Edge Holiday Rentals

Robert Dougan

Executive General Manager, Strategy & Research

Tourism Australia

Rob Jeffress

CEO

HomHero

Sabrina Schwaighofer

Co-CEO & Co-Founder

MadeComfy

Sam Steel

Resly

Steve Keir

Co-Founder & CEO

Hotelesque

Sarah Workman

Manager – Strategy & Growth

A Perfect Stay

Sylvia Johnston

Owner

HiRUM Software Solutions

Theron Lewis

Founder & President

Capitol Rental Management LLC

Tim Mortimer

Manager

bnb Made Easy

Toby Sconce

PM Team Manager, ANZ, Partner Success, Holiday Rentals

Expedia Group

Tracey Northcott

Owner

Tracey Northcott Consulting

Will Creedon

CEO & Founder

Alloggio

William Crock

CEO

Hometime Group

Yoav Tourel

Managing Director

Guesty

What to Expect

Panel Discussions

Listen to leaders in STRA work through some of the biggest challenges facing the industry, including pathways to post-COVID recovery.

Masterclasses

Learn from experts in immersive sessions that cover everything from marketing and customer experience to operations and accounting.

Keynote Sessions

Find out how top short-term rental operators are navigating issues like post-COVID recovery and changing regulation.

Networking Opportunities

Connect with ASTRA hosts, owners, managers and stakeholders at three different networking events.

Trade Exhibition

Explore the latest in hospitality at the Here to Stay 2022 Trade Exhibition, which features a range of vendors at tabletop displays.

Cocktail Gala

The ASTRA 2022 Cocktail Gala, hosted on the Monday evening, includes canapes and a three-hour beverage package at The Island Gold Coast’s Glasshouse.

From newcomers to seasoned operators,

Here to Stay has something for everyone.

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Eric bergaglia

Senior Director, Global head of Accommodations Segment of Booking.com

As the global head of Booking.com’s homes and apartments business, Eric Bergaglia leads one of the fastest growing segments for the company. Focused on tailoring the Booking.com experience for partners that offer these types of unique, local stays and customers who want to book and enjoy them, Bergaglia and his team support properties in 228 countries and territories around the globe. From introducing new partners to listing online and helping seasoned entrepreneurs maximise their earnings, Booking.com is dedicated to supporting home and apartment owners with the right technology, insights and support to grow their businesses via the Booking.com platform.

Bergaglia comes to Booking.com from Amazon, where he served in numerous roles in his decade at the company, including most recently as the head of Amazon Prime Video for Southern Europe leading business strategy and marketing efforts as well as partnerships for the region. He also held roles across the company’s Kindle, Appstore and digital music verticals. Earlier in his career, Bergaglia worked in content, product and project management across creative and commercial teams for a variety of tech-forward companies.

Bergaglia holds a Master’s Degree in Marketing and Management from the EDHEC Business School and is a native of France. He now lives in Amsterdam with his family.

Rebecca Cribbin

Founder and CEO Holiday Rental Specialists
Founder and CEO Holiday Rental Experts

A passionate and opinionated expert in the management of short-term rentals, each year Rebecca and her team at Holiday Rental Specialists help nearly 100,000 guests create lasting holiday memories on behalf of busy property owners. Steering this ship in the right direction has been a labour of love for Rebecca for the past 10 years.

Rebecca has recently written a book “Ready Set Booked – Holiday Rental Start Up in 10 simple steps” A guide for investors thinking about purchasing and setting up a short-term rental and has a new business set to launch. Holiday Rental Experts will help other Managers be more productive, more profitable and have more fun by providing industry specific Training, Coaching, Outsourcing and Consulting.

Rebecca loves sharing her recipes for success and the mistakes she’s made along the way. Now that her children are adults, she can often be found travelling the world, learning, and collaborating with industry colleagues.

Caspar P. Schmidt

Managing Director, QCC Collection Group Pty Ltd

Caspar is a hotel branding expert, he is a pre-opening specialist, who has several years’ experience in operating and leading all aspects of multi-million-dollar hotel portfolios around the world. Caspar have launched and managed business hotels, apartment hotels, boutique hotels, co-working facilities, co-living concepts as well as sustainable eco retreats. Having led hotel companies as COO and CEO in international markets and driven the expansion and development side of well-known Australian, Asian, and European groups with a focus on exceptional 5-star service. In 2019 he founded his own Boutique Hotel Management Company QCC Collection Group Pty Ltd, working with investors on projects around the globe.

Jodie Mansell

Authorised Representative, Armstrong’s

We are excited to introduce our new Authorised Representative Jodie Mansell to the team

Jodie started her insurance career in 1995 as a 20-year-old receptionist for TGIO insurance in Launceston, Tasmania. It was not long before she quickly put her hand up when a domestic underwriting position became available. Leaving TGIO in 1997 she took on an underwriter position with NZI whom in 1998 merged with Commercial Union to become CGU. At CGU she took on various roles including credit control, commercial underwriting, claims and workers compensation. Having worked in the various positions helped her understand all aspects of the insurance industry, which then led to her next move as an Authorised Representative with McCrimmon Insurance Services from 2007 until 2016.

Jodie had a little break from the industry and after a year she accepted an assistant role at INTAS Insurance Brokers. Soon after she became a Senior Account Manager looking after approximately 470 clients.

She is now excited to join HomSure as an Authorised Representative of Armstrong’s Insurance Brokers.

In 2021 after 2 years of study Jodie completed and obtained her Diploma of Insurance Broking.

The valuable experience Jodie brings to HomSure with both her insurance knowledge and her ability to listen and understand her clients is impeccable.

In Jodie’s spare time she loves spending time with her three children, family, friends and 2 golden retrievers Brax & Frankie. She also loves sports, the outdoors, keeping fit and experiencing new places.

Erin Stevenson

With 20+ years of experience in the hotel and tourism industry, Erin brings a wealth of knowledge to her role as Global Chief Operations Officer at NewBook. 

She is an industry expert in PMS technology, and is passionate about providing leading technology that helps accommodation businesses deliver memorable guest experiences. 

In addition, her customer relations background strongly focuses on communication and driving value to clients at every opportunity.

Toby Sconce

Vrbo / Expedia Group

With over 20 years of experience in the Tourism industry, including 8 with Stayz, Toby brings a range of knowledge and experience to the holiday rental sector. 

As part of Vrbo’s Partner Success team, Toby manages a team of Account Managers who are equipped to coach Property Management partners to maximise bookings and efficiency through use of the Vrbo platform.

Rebecca Thompson

Director, Ocean Edge Holiday Rentals

I have been managing business for over 25 years across the areas of Accommodation Hospitality, The Fitness industry and Tourism.

I take the greatest sense of achievement in the teams that I create, the collaboration and shared ideas have always lead to highest levels of 5 star accolades and premium services for guests.

Ocean Edge Holiday Rentals Has welcomed over 6000 guests and on Airbnb alone we are rated 4.8 stars from their 3300 reviews.

Lisa Peterson

Intrepid and solicitous mother of 3, After building L’Abode from the ground up, L’Abode Accommodation has been in business for over 10 years managing over 200 properties across Australia in the luxury executive space. 

When not obsessing over her properties, guests and team, Lisa will probably be holidaying with her family, getting back to nature or sampling some great food and wine! The L’Abode team has been built on a foundation of honesty, and feels like a family who Lisa has the pleasure to empower and develop. Lisa’s heart is at the centre of everything she does, and as the business has grown, so has her opportunity to give back to the community. Her standout vision is to contribute a smile to the underprivileged, and to make a difference. 

The core values of honesty, taking independent action and providing the best customer experiences. www.labodeaccommodation.com.au

Quirin Schwaighofer

Quirin Schwaighofer is the Co-CEO & Co-Founder of Australia’s multi-award-winning short-term rental innovator MadeComfy. Originally from Munich, Germany, Quirin holds a Master in Industrial Engineering and an AGSM MBA. 

In his early career, Quirin was responsible for the acquisition and implementation of large scale service contracts in the mining industry and was recognised by BHP Billiton for one of the best contract implementations in 2012. In 2014, Quirin resigned from his full time job to focus on his start-up HiKey Resources, a time and attendance app for the mining and construction industry. 

In 2015, he then Co-founded MadeComfy together with Sabrina, to solve the problem of managing his apartment in Cremorne Point on the short-term rental market. MadeComfy has raised over $15m in capital from high profile investors like Cliff Rosenberg (ex-MD and director at LinkedIn, Afterpay, Nearmaps, Me&You) Rolf Hansen (Founder & ex-CEO of Amaysim), Georg Chmiel (Ex-CEO LJ Hooker, ex-CFO REA) as well as global investment bank Investec, is one of only seven official partners of Airbnb. 

Bart Sobies

Bart Sobies, an up-and-coming leader in the tourism space, is the founder of The Accommodation Show & iBooked.Online. A serial entrepreneur, having started his first online business at the age of 15, and he is an ardent pursuer of all things tech, marketing and investment. Bart has been at the helm of several successful tech companies, building great digital products, leading sales & marketing teams helping them grow into multi-million $ businesses. 

At heart, his real passion is helping hospo businesses navigate an increasingly complex and noisy digital world. He hates the hype that ‘experts’ talk about and works in the real world by achieving results. He shares his expertise in Direct Bookings, Marketing, branding, building awesome digital products and increasing revenue to businesses. Bart has helped thousands of hospitality owners generate millions of $ in extra revenue through his company ibooked.online. He is also the voice of The Accommodation Show where he talks to industry leaders about their best tips and hacks for success and is also the founder of The Accommodation Managers and Owners Facebook Community where over 1500 accommodation owners and managers share their industry thoughts and expertise. He says, “My goal in life is to make sure you succeed in the areas which are most important to you and your business”

Julie George

Julie George is the Author of the best-selling book ‘Million Dollar Host’ which outlines her story and unique STR property management business model that resulted in incredible success in a short amount of time – (130 properties/ $8million income in 3 years). In 2019 Julie sold her business to a larger company and is now a Consultant coaching other budding entrepreneurs to replicate the success that she has seen in this incredible industry. 

She is now considered one of the world’s leading experts in Short Term Rentals, Judge of the Shortyz Awards 2021 (the most prestigious Industry worldwide awards), Lead Investor in washbnb (an innovative American based business) and Head Coach with the Legends Accelerator Program in San Diego.  Julie has been featured on worldwide Podcasts, Newspapers, Magazines and TV.

Will Creedon

With over 30 years of entrepreneurial hospitality and tourism industry experience, Will Creedon has successfully operated multiple styles of vacation and leisure businesses across the globe.

Born and bred in Ireland, Will settled in Australia over 20 years ago and was immediately head-hunted by The Roche Group to develop and operate the Harrigan’s Irish Pub portfolio across Australia as well as helping to establish and operate Hunter Valley Gardens, the largest commercial garden in the Southern Hemisphere.

In December 2015, Will founded Alloggio Group, a leading operator of short-term rental accommodation (STRA) in Australia who provide specialised expertise in accommodation property.

Since inception, alloggio have acquired 19 holiday property management businesses from geographies in Far North Queensland to Victoria, bringing the current properties under management to circa 2000. Alloggio’s Mid-market Hotel division currently manages 13 hotels with 428 rooms located on the eastern seaboard of Australia.

Jon Lawry

Jon’s professional experience spans construction management, corporate finance, valuation, sales, and property management. 

With a passion for travel, property, and people, Jon’s solution-based attitude is a refreshing addition to the short-term rental industry, bringing a dynamic approach to each new challenge.

As CEO and Founder of The Urban Butler, a boutique, guest experience-based, short-term accommodation business, Jon is at the forefront of innovation in the industry.

Bode Ten Buuren

Manager National Surveys and Data Science Section – Tourism Research Australia branchThe Australian Trade and Investment Commission (AUSTRADE)

For over 10 years I have had the pleasure of working in economic measurement through roles in the National Accounts (GDP), Government Finance Statistics, Prices (measuring inflation in Australia) and now Tourism. I have a passion for numbers and helping people understand the stories that sit behind them, while also contributing to research to solve complex problems that support the development of government policy and provide industry advice. Austrade leads the development of tourism and visitor economy policy for the Australian Government which is made possible through the production of timely and relevant information.

Yoav Tourel

An accomplished leader, technology savvy with close to 20 years’ experience across customer success in APAC and EMEA. Leading Guesty APAC, a global property management software and based in Sydney.

Pete Smith MD

Pete Smith founded one of the most respected and innovative Short Term Letting Property Management companies in Australia and has grown it to a market dominant position in Lake Macquarie and the Hunter Valley. Coming from a background in Corporate Computer Software, Pete has constantly integrated and implemented the most leading edge technology while also focussing the business on Best Practice Customer Service and Owner Liaison and Retention. With a strong history of local and international speaking and media engagements, he is an open book on how he can help your business.

Nick Ellis

With more than 20 years industry experience, Nick has gained a reputation as one of the most vibrant, entrepreneurial & engaging thought leaders in guest, owner & team experience innovation.

Nick’s characteristic energy & passion has afforded him opportunities to work in some of Australia’s most well-loved brands including Ovolo, Sofitel, Peppers, InterContinental & Westin as well as the global brand launch & pre-opening GM for Tribe Hotels (now the fastest growing international brand of Accor). In his current role as Innovation Manager for Spicers Retreats, Nicks focuses on evoking thought and creating operational passion for realising business process & outcome improvement.

Appointed as a Young Tourism Leader by the Queensland Govt in 2018, Nick went on to become one of the leading voices in workforce engagement, motivation & development. He continues to promote industry best practice as a Judge for the esteemed Queensland Tourism Awards whilst also representing over 55,000 tourism businesses as an elected member of the board of directors for the Queensland Tourism Industry Council

Sarah Workman

Manager – Strategy & Growth of A Perfect Stay Pty Ltd

Sarah is currently the Manager of Strategy and Growth for A Perfect Stay.

Most recently, she has been working with local industry on their defence against Byron Shire Council’s 90 day cap policy in her role as project manager of the ASTRA Byron sub committee.

Prior to this Sarah has last spent the last 20 years working in the corporate, public and private sectors and has held a range of positions in senior management, strategy development, marketing, economic development and tourism.

Rob Dougan

EGM Strategy & Research for Tourism Australia

The Strategy and Research division incorporates four interrelated functions: Data and Research (ensuring that our initiatives are informed by relevant insights and sharing these insights with the Australian tourism industry); Strategy (defining and communicating our organisational objectives and strategies to ensure best use of resources); and Planning and Reporting (implementing our strategies and objectives through annual planning and monitoring our performance to plan).

Rob’s role is to work with the Executive Leadership Team to ultimately make Tourism Australia a more effective organisation for the Australia tourism industry. Since starting at Tourism Australia in 2019, Rob has written and delivered strategies for the 2019/20 Black Summer Bushfires and helped navigate the organisation through the COVID-19 Pandemic. Prior to working at Tourism Australia, Rob had a 15-year career in advertising that included leading the strategy for key campaigns for Tourism Australia that were produced by Clemenger including Restaurant Australia, Aquatic and Coastal, and Undiscover, amongst others. 

Eacham Curry

Senior Director, Government and Corporate Affairs, Asia-Pacific of Expedia Group

Eacham Curry is the Senior Director of Government and Corporate Affairs for the Asia-Pacific Region for Expedia. In this role, Eacham manages the interface between Expedia and its government, community, industry and media stakeholders. Expedia and its family of brands look to Eacham for advice and management of key political, regulatory and industry relationships, as well as a being the key spokesperson on public policy matters that impact the business.

Tim Mortimer

Founder & CEO of BNB Made Easy

Tim Mortimer grew up in Orange, NSW. His background in farming, sport, education and hospitality have helped him develop a diverse range of skills and knowledge, allowing Tim and his wife Flora, to successfully build their short-term property management company, BNB Made Easy.

Tim is bucking the trend by upholding an Airbnb superhost status at scale and is a contributing author to the Amazon best-selling book Hospitable Hosts.

William Crock

Founder / CEO of Hometime

Co-founder and CEO at Hometime, one of the largest STR management companies in Australia. I’m excited by the potential of the STR industry as we follow a similar trajectory to the hotel industry through the 90s and 2000s with continuous innovation and professionalisation.

Traveller behaviour has clearly changed in our favour and although COVID presented the industry with it’s toughest challenge, it has also accelerated the trend towards STR accomodation.

Our goal with Hometime is to become a leading professional host such that travellers look for our brand when seeking quality and consistency of experience when booking their short term rental.

David Whelan

CEO of Urban Rest Apartments

Ex-finance professional turned entrepreneur, David is the CEO and founder of a technology driven hospitality brand and real estate platform Urban Rest Apartments.

Urban Rest provides accommodation designed for a new generation of business and leisure travellers, who are conscious about their wellbeing and sustainability of the planet and is driving growth through a premium service, technology, and superior product offering.

David enjoys pushing both his body and mind to the limit and competes in triathlons and other endurance events, following a lifetime of involvement in various sports. David is also passionate about self-growth, leadership, education, equal-opportunity and sustainability

Tracey Northcott

Tokyo Family Stays/Tracey Northcott Consulting

Australian Tracey Northcott of Enfour, Tokyo Family Stays and Tracey Northcott Consulting, is a serial entrepreneur and multi-preneur based in Tokyo, Japan. She is one of the most successful AirBnB hosts in Tokyo.

She also runs Software development company Enfour with her family as well as Tracey Northcott Consulting where she helps other hosts
discover the true potential of their STR or AirBnb business maximizing their investment, enjoyment and hospitality standards.

Sabrina Schwaighofer

Co-Founder and Co-CEO of MadeComfy

Sabrina is the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of MadeComfy. Sabrina Co-founded MadeComfy in 2015 and was awarded by Travel Weekly as a Rising Star in Travel. Before starting MadeComfy Sabrina’s background was in Finance working for Bluechip FMCGs like Colgate- Palmolive and Kellogg’s. Sabrina’s background and corporate exposure have helped her to build a company that today has been highly recognised for fast growth and innovation and it is in the top four best places to work in hospitality within Australia and New Zealand.

Theron Lewis

Founder – STR Hero

We have saved over 1million people from unfair STR bans. Our goal is to save the STR Industry worldwide. We improve the quality of lives and communities by promoting and defending the STR industry

Steve Keir

Co Founder & CEO

Hotelesque

Hotelesque is grounded in Steve’s two decades of experience at leading finance and property firms in senior finance and management roles, where he drove the development of innovative online products which were a first for the industry.

Hotelesque has been operating for over 10 years and has welcomed over 10,000 guest to its range of curated properties in Sydney’s Eastern suburbs.

Providing a 5 star experience to guests, high occupancy and financial return to owners are the essence of Hotelsque and its success.

Rob Jeffress

Chair ASTRA

Rob is the current Chair of ASTRA and has worked with governments around Australia to help protect our industry and shape the regulations that provide certainty for our future.

Rob is also a director of Homhero and Homsure which provide services to the industry and heads the Private Property group which has a number of holiday rental, accommodation, real estate and other businesses.

Sam Steel

Co-Founder Resly

With an extensive background in the online travel space, Sam spent close to 10 years working for bookings holdings in both New Zealand and Australia. Sam and his Co-Founder Rico, have an entrepreneurial spirit and developed Resly, an all-in-one platform enabling hoteliers access the latest trust accounting property management software. Sam has a passion for the travel sector and emerging technologies.

Sylvia Johnston

Joint CEO HiRUM Software Solutions of HiRUM Software Solutions

Heralding from the hospitality management industry, Sylvia Johnston founded HiRUM Software Solutions in 1999. Whilst wanting to remain within the industry, her focus shifted to designing and developing high level service and technology solutions for accommodation providers.


Over the last 23 years, Sylvia has been instrumental in growing HiRUM into a household name in the accommodation industry and now oversees the operation of the business throughout Australia and Asia Pacific.


Sylvias goal is a simple one: To simplify all things accommodation by providing seamless technology, whilst improving the profitably of the accommodation business.

David Harris

Owner Manager of Aussie Chillout

David has over 23 years’ experience working in disability care & employment consulting. During that time, David invested in property and started in STRA with Stayz back in 2004.

By 2014, he turned all 7 properties to STRA in 3 states and 6 council areas.

By November 2017, David made the step to use PMS software.

In February 2018, www.aussiechillout.com.au was formed to promote and get more direct bookings.

With over 18 years of experience in STRA, he only manages his own 7 properties.

Hayden D’Arcy

Director, HomHero

Hayden comes from over 15 years of Accommodation and Technology background. As a co-founder of HOMHERO, Hayden has had the benefit of working very closely with the leading OTA’s for many years.

Hayden also owns and operates Gold Coast Holiday Management and Sanctuary Stays in Port Douglas.

Phil Spyrou

Owner of Swainson Apartments

Returning above market yields to property owners and providing amazing stays to guests travelling for business or pleasure, we offer a variety of properties in Adelaide for short-term accommodation.

Chris de Closey

Co-Founder & Director of Coastal Letting Co & Holiday Management Co

Chris has over 15 years in the hospitality and tourism space, consulting to hotels and resorts and building his own businesses.

He operates businesses with over 150 short term keys under management, all developed from scratch.

His knowledge and nous in the industry has helped grow his multiple businesses to where they are today and prime him for incredible growth in future.