Alex Zozaya, executive chairman of Apple Leisure Group (ALG), was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award at the Caribbean Hotel & Resort Investment Summit (CHRIS+HOLA Connect) on September 9, 2020. This award is presented to an individual who has made significant contributions to the hospitality industry over their lifetime through their actions, deeds and great accomplishments.
Karen Whitt, first vice president of the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA) and vice president of sales and marketing for The Hartling Group, presented the award to Zozaya during an online interview during the CHRIS Conference virtual edition. “The previous recipients of this award have been major players in the industry; I am deeply honored to be this year’s recipient, even if we are unable to meet in person,” said Zozaya.
In the interview conducted by Whitt, Zozaya noted the importance of establishing and maintaining strong partnerships during times of crisis, such as the one 2020 has presented. “It is crucial that all the players in the sector perceive each other as colleagues and partners; my competitors’ value proposition and best practices contribute as much as mine to endorse our segment and strengthen the value chain.” Zozaya also identified collaboration and consistency as keywords to address the challenges that our industry is facing. “It is indispensable to develop a global coordinated message where private and public sectors join efforts to address the confusion that many of our customers are experiencing. Coordination among countries and a common language will be decisive to our recovery.”
Zozaya’s contributions to international hotel business have garnered numerous industry accolades, including being ranked him among the “100 Most Important and Influential Business People in Mexico” by CNN Expansion; and in December 2019, the Dominican Republic Hotel and Restaurant Association recognized him with the “Dominican Tourism Champion” award for his commitment to strengthen the country’s tourism industry.
Zozaya has held key roles on diverse tourism organisms. In February 2018, he was named vice president of the Mexican National Council of Tourism Companies, representing the private tourism sector in the country. In August 2018, he joined the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC) executive committee as vice chairman for Latin America and the Caribbean.
In August 29, 2019, after six years as CEO and 20 years participating in the many stages of the company’s trajectory, Zozaya transitioned into the executive chairman role at ALG, one that allows him to continue to play a strategic role in the company’s expansion. His current goal is to successfully transition the group from a regional to a global player. “Our arrival in Europe had very good pacing, and I would like to apply the same strategy in Asia,” he said.