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A BTN Exclusive - Hicham Hassouni Strategy & Business Development Chief Officer for Boutique Group

A BTN Exclusive - Hicham Hassouni Strategy & Business Development Chief Officer for Boutique Group

Hicham Hassouni has accumulated 20 years of Hospitality and Real Estate experience in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. He held senior executive positions with world-class advisory firms such as KPMG and Jones Lang LaSalle (JLL), as well as leading global hotel groups such as Accor and Rosewood Hotel Group. Currently Hicham serves as Strategy & Business Development Chief Officer for Boutique Group, a Public Investment Fund company that develops historical & cultural palaces into ultra-luxury boutique hotel.
Prior to his attendance at the FHS Summit in Abu Dhabi in September BTN caught up with him to hear his views on the hospitality market.

BTN: What are your / your organization’s core areas of focus when it comes to investment? I.e in the areas of innovation, sustainability, human capital and/or technology?

HH: Technology and innovation are a key part of elevating guest experiences and preserving heritage at Boutique Group. By investing in technology, we are ensuring that we are one step ahead. I believe it’s also important to consider that our specialty involves a lot of culture and history, and to preserve that in the utmost accuracy, we need cutting-edge technology. By embracing innovation, we create a harmonic combination of the past and the future, where investments in history translate into investments in future growth, all while keeping sustainability and human capital in heart.

BTN: What is your outlook for the hospitality industry in the Middle East in 2023 and beyond?

HH: My outlook for the hospitality industry is that technology and AI will continue to play a major role in not only providing exceptional experiences for guests, but also, in achieving maximum efficiency in day-to-day and long-term operations - with the correct regulation and application, of course.  At this pace, the Middle Eastern hospitality industry is already on its way to become the leading region for tourism and hospitality globally.


BTN: What does your panel/presentation/workshop at FHS focus on and what will delegates be able to take away from your session?

HH: During the panel, I will be pleased to share our unique approach at Boutique Group, where delegates will be familiarized with The Group’s strategy to transform these properties from palaces of rich history to ultra-luxury boutique hotels, by seamlessly blending the preservation of Saudi Arabian heritage with the infusion of modern elements, crafting an unparalleled experience.
We will also take the audience through some of the plans we have for the Boutique Group in the long term that focuses on sustainable growth, as well as the significance of the partnerships we are executing.

BTN: What are you personally looking forward to most from your attendance at FHS 2023?

HH:Understanding the approach of other hospitality entities is always insightful. As a team, having years of extensive industry experience does not mean we are done learning. Of course, I am also very excited to be utilizing FHS as a platform to share Boutique Group’s mission and vision with the industry.

For more details on the Boutique Group visit

The Future Hospitality Summit is being held on 25-27 September 2023 at the Hilton Abu Dhabi Yas Island for more info visit