Hosts Global Forum in Malta: A Resounding Success, Connecting Visionary Planners Worldwide


Hosts Global, a global strategic partner for meeting and event planners, celebrated another triumphant edition of the Hosts Global Forum in the picturesque destination of Malta. The event, held from December 5th to 8th, was hosted in conjunction with Colours of Malta, A Hosts Global Member, and brought together over 150 Hosts Global Members and customers for an immersive experience that seamlessly blended creativity, education, and exploration. 

Discovering Connections, Learning, Fun, and Malta! 

This year’s theme, “Discover,” encapsulated the essence of the Hosts Global Forum, where attendees delved into meaningful connections, impactful learning, and unparalleled fun, all set against the backdrop of the beautiful Maltese landscape. Hosted at the luxurious Hilton Malta, the Forum provided a platform for attendees to engage with industry leaders, including a welcome from Dr. Gavin Gulia, Visit Malta’s Minister of Tourism, and renowned speakers such as Kurt Paben (CEO, Hosts Global), Michael Dominguez (President & CEO, Associated Luxury Hotels International), Carina Bauer (CEO, IMEX Group), Daniel de Petri Testaferrata (President, The Maltese Association of the Sovereign Order of Malta), and Neil Agius (World Record Holder, Eco Sustainable Activist). 

Insights from Industry Titans: A Business Panel to Remember 

An exceptional addition to the Forum was the insightful panel discussion led by Hosts Global’s SVP of Sales & Marketing, Tina Gaccetta that broke down crucial business insights. The distinguished panel included: 

  • Trish Adams, Senior Director Supplier Relations, Maritz 
  • Tim Altbaum, CEO, Vario Productions 
  • Nico Nicholas, CEO and Founder, Trees4Events 
  • Alan Ramirez, Director at Spectra, a Hosts Global Member 

This dynamic panel shared their wealth of experience and knowledge, offering valuable perspectives on industry trends, innovation, and best practices. 

Skyview of forest with winding road

Sustainability at the Forefront: A Green Commitment 

Hosts Global is proud to place sustainability at the heart of its global initiatives. Through our valued partner, Trees4Events, the 9th Annual Global Forum contributed to a significant giveback of 2,066 trees – equivalent to plus 339,030 kgs/747,433 lbs of certified emission reductions. These trees will find a home in Trees4Events’ new mangrove plantation in Mozambique, contributing to environmental conservation. 

In addition to this remarkable contribution, Hosts Global gifted an additional 30 trees using Trees4Events’ innovative ‘tree swag’ tool. This brings Hosts Global’s total tree count to an impressive 3,066 trees directly from the organization. Collaboratively with our members, we have planted a total of 3,633 trees (including the Hosts Global trees) and removed 596,175 kg of emissions. 

Unforgettable Activities and Exclusive Experiences 

The Hosts Global Forum went beyond traditional conferences, offering four incredible activities to showcase Malta’s rich heritage and scenic beauty: 

  • Maritime Heritage: Harbour Cruise & Walking Tour 
  • Planners Paradise: VIP Excursion for Event Architects 
  • Three Cities: Rolling Geeks Tour 
  • Trekking Malta: Hiking with Hosts 
  • Vino-Venture: Maltese Wine Tasting Tour 

These activities provided attendees with an immersive experience, allowing them to discover Malta’s history, culture, and natural wonders. 

Culminating in Grand Style: A Week of Unforgettable Moments 

The 9th Annual Hosts Global Forum reached its crescendo with a series of extraordinary events that left a lasting imprint on attendees. The grand finale unfolded with a symphony of remarkable experiences, each carefully curated to showcase the beauty and rich heritage of Malta. 

The week began with a spectacular kickoff, as clients and Hosts Global Members convened for an evening of networking and connection at The Phoenicia Malta. The kickoff set the tone for the week, with guests arriving in style, chauffeured in vintage cars representing the elegance of decades past. 

As the week progressed, attendees discovered awe in the silent city of Mdina and were treated to a private tour and serenade at the iconic St. Paul’s Cathedral, followed by an exclusive reception at Bacchus, a venue steeped in history. 

The grand finale unfolded with a walking tour of Valletta culminated in a champagne toast in the Valetta Garden with cannons firing in celebration over the bay. Following, guests continued with a visit to St. John’s Cathedral for a private tour, offering guests a glimpse into Malta’s rich cultural and religious heritage. The evening reached its zenith at the Mediterranean Conference Center, where attendees were ceremoniously Knighted by the Order of Malta during a memorable reception. 

From the kickoff at The Phoenicia Malta to the Knightings at the Mediterranean Conference Center, every moment of the event was meticulously designed to create an unforgettable experience, fostering connections, and celebrating the beauty of Malta. 

Recognizing Excellence 

A highlight of the evening was the celebration of outstanding achievements in the Hosts Global community. The following awards were presented to recognize excellence across various categories: 

  • 2023 North American DMC of the Year: Juice Studios, A Hosts Global Member 
  • 2023 International DMC of the Year: Colours of Malta, A Hosts Global Member 
  • 2023 Made Memorable Award: Hosts Louisville, A Hosts Global Member 
  • 2023 Ferocious Creativity Award: COTC Events, A Hosts Global Member 
  • 2023 Operational Excellence Award: Spectra, A Hosts Global Member 

Each award winner exemplifies excellence in their respective categories, showcasing the diverse talents and capabilities within the Hosts Global network. 

A Grand Success 

The Hosts Global Forum in Malta was a resounding success, leaving guests in awe and creating lasting memories. Attendees were treated to a unique blend of education, networking, and exploration, showcasing the Hosts Global difference. 

Kurt Paben, CEO of Hosts Global, shared his thoughts on the event: “As we reflect on the Hosts Global Forum in Malta, it’s clear that this event exemplifies the spirit of discovery and connection that defines Hosts Global Forum. Bringing together visionary planners from around the globe against the backdrop of Malta’s beauty has been nothing short of extraordinary. Our commitment to delivering meaningful, memorable, and motivational group experiences resonated throughout the Forum, and we are proud to have created an environment where education, inspiration, and exploration seamlessly converged. The success of this event reinforces our passion for the industry and our dedication to pushing the boundaries of what’s possible. We look forward to continuing this journey, shaping the future of events, one unforgettable experience at a time.”