The Association of hotels, restaurants, and cafes – HOTAM is a voluntary and non-profit trade association of hotel and catering businesses in North Macedonia. HOTAM works to enhance and improve the hotel business climate in our country by representing and promoting the industry to the public, governmental bodies, and allied organizations within the country and abroad. We assist the hotel, food, and beverage industry to improve their sales and profits while protecting the rights, professionalism, ethics, and performance quality of the industry through the establishment of ethics and rating standards aligned with those of the European Union.
The organization was founded in 1992 as a group of catering and tourism services within the Economic Chamber of North Macedonia.
In 2007 the Association was reorganized and registered as an independent, non-governmental, non-profit association of hotels, restaurants, cafes, and camps – HOTAM – with its headquarters in the city of Ohrid.
The management team consists of the president, vice-presidents of multiple sectors of hospitality and the board of directors consisted of 9 board members. In addition, an elected five-member supervisory committee reviews all the organizations’ financial activities.
As the country strives to move toward a market economy and eventual integration into the EU, the sustainable development of North Macedonian tourism and the promotion of inbound travel from foreign markets has become a primary activity of HOTAM.
HOTAM is one of the few hotel organizations with an all-volunteer executive and Association management team.
HOTAM provides a variety of services to their members and to the travel and tourism sector. It organizes and participates in numerous domestic and international fairs and seminars. Regular and special meetings, as well as seminars and trainings, are held for skills transfer and information sharing. The organization actively participates in making and improving the industry’s regulations.
Hundreds of materials and plenty of effort is distributed each year to promote the country as a desirable tourism destination and to enhance the image of the North Macedonian hotel, food, and beverage industry. The president of the Association represents the membership with governmental agencies, presides at regular and special assembly meetings and supervises the production and distribution of updated hotel directories and travel brochures to member establishments.
Group benefits such as coordination of the members’ dealings with purveyors and distributors to obtain group rates and discounts, along with an initiative for obtaining lowered VAT rates for the hotel and tourism sector have recently been commenced by the president and a three-person volunteer staff at the Association’s newly established office in Ohrid.
HOTAM’s active members include most of the bigger hoteliers in the country. Membership in HOTAM helps businesses improve their earnings and increase the value of their investments with sales and management training as well as sophisticated marketing information and materials. The directory of member hotels was recently converted to an international symbol-based format, offering a much more user-friendly and economical product, directed towards many expanding nearby foreign markets.
HOTAM is looking to broaden its membership base in several ways. There are potential association members outside the mainstream hotel industry, such as guest houses, private lodging and tour services, international operators poised to enter the market etc. HOTAM’s goal is to bring together all interested parties in the hotel, food and beverage industry with its management focusing on developing trends such as religious, historical, and eco-tourism.