He advises hospitality, leisure and tourism businesses internationally and has acted as an Arbitrator for the International Court of Arbitration in hotel dispute resolution.
He is a non-executive director of Safestay plc, an AIM listed operator of contemporary hostels located throughout Europe and a non-executive director of CP Holdings Ltd, a diversified industrial and services group of companies, which owns and operates serviced offices and co-working spaces in the UK, Danubius hotels in Hungary and the newly launched brand, “Ensana”, the largest group of thermal spas in Central Europe.
He is Chairman of the UK Government’s Events Industry Board, established to grow the Business Events Industry across the UK, and Chairman of the Business Visits & Events Partnership, representing Britain’s business and cultural Events’ Industry. He is also a director of The Tourism Alliance, the body that brings together all the major tourism organisations in the United Kingdom.
Michael Hirst was appointed an OBE in the 2004 for his services to tourism in Britain and was awarded the 2013 Joint Meetings Industry Council Unity Award, recognising individuals who have made a significant contribution to the advancement of the international Meetings Industry. He was awarded the 2008 IHIF Lifetime Achievement Award for his distinguished career in hospitality, leisure and tourism.
He is a former board member of the Ladbroke Group Plc and was Chief Executive of its hotel division and CEO of Hilton International. He was voted “Corporate Hotelier of the World” by the readers of HOTELS Magazine.