The Association of Independent Tour Operators has switched hotels for its conference as the original hotel will not be completed in time.

The conference, which runs from November 27-30 and will be attended by more than 150 delegates, was originally due to be hosted at the Kenzi Menara Palace hotel in the centre of Marrakesh.

However, AITO bosses have been told that the hotel, which is still under construction, would not be ready in time for the conference after investors withdrew funding.

AITO chairman Derek Moore said: “(It was) every tour operator’s nightmare. No accommodation.

“Some 200 rooms to find in Marrakesh, in peak season and with only six weeks to go to the big event. A thoughtful weekend ensued.”

Moore made an emergency trip to the city with two other AITO staff and two members of the Moroccan National Tourist Office. After looking at a number of different hotels,  they chose the Palmeraie Golf Palace 20 minutes from the old city to host the entire conference.

Moore said: “My thanks to John Gillies and Helen Cyster (from AITO) and Ali and Aziz (from the MNTO) for dropping everything when the news hit us and dashing with me to Marrakesh.”

Meanwhile, it has been confirmed that next year’s AITO Specialist Travel Agents overseas conference will be held in Gdansk in Poland some time in June.