HotelPlanner Announces Return of the American Group Travel Awards

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The annual black-tie charity gala takes place at Nobu Hotel South Beach on December 5 to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Dylan Ratigan to return as Host. Tennis star John Isner to be honored as World Hospitality Award winner.

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HotelPlanner, a leading group and individual travel technology platform, today announced the grand return of the American Group Travel Awards (AGTA), a black-tie charity gala the company created in 2004 to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The event will take place on Sunday, December 5, 2021 at Nobu Hotel South Beach in Miami to coincide with the end of Art Basel.

This year’s theme is “Reimagining Group Travel” to acknowledge the increased complexity for group travel planners and how the industry continues to adapt and evolve to the ever-changing post-pandemic operating environment.

This year’s American Group Travel Awards will honor the ‘best of the best’ in group travel in the following categories:

  • Best Hotel Brand - Conventions & Conferences
  • Best Hotel Brand - Luxury Meetings & Events
  • Best Hotel Brand - Weddings
  • Best Hotel Brand - Sport Team & Leisure Groups
  • Best Online Travel Agency
  • Best City Convention & Visitors Bureau - Groups & Conventions
  • Best Hotel Management Company - Group Travel
  • Best Media Outlet – Group, Meetings & Conventions Travel

HotelPlanner will also bestow its prestigious World Hospitality Award, the company’s highest honor, to professional tennis star John Isner. For the past year, HotelPlanner has sponsored Isner as a brand and hospitality ambassador. For example, Isner uses his social media platform to award free hotel vouchers to select fans for every Ace he serves.

"I'm deeply honored to be chosen as HotelPlanner's World Hospitality Award winner at the 2021 American Group Travel Awards," says John Isner. "I very much look forward to accepting the award in person in Miami, and hopefully serving up some aces with friends to benefit such a worthy charity like St. Jude's."

Isner’s philanthropic efforts also extend to his own foundation. In 2019, Isner launched the Isner Family Foundation to support cancer treatment efforts at hospitals in Dallas-Fort Worth, in honor of his mother, a two-time cancer survivor.

“We are incredibly excited to bring back our company’s signature award show after last year’s cancellation,” says Tim Hentschel, Co-Founder & CEO, HotelPlanner. “We chose this year’s theme ‘Reimagining Group Travel’ to recognize the major pivot our industry had to make last year and how group travel continues to evolve as we come out of a pandemic. This year’s award nominees are all winners in my book because they all showed impressive agility in serving customers regardless of the travel environment, and they did it without missing a beat.”

“Celebrating those who make it possible for us to come together has never felt so good,” said Dylan Ratigan, ATGA’s perennial Host. “The AGTA will surely be the best ever this year.”

If you are interested in attending and/or sponsoring this year’s charity gala, please contact the event’s Executive Producer Aioni Bashara at

HotelPlanner has announced plans to go public on NASDAQ via a 3-way SPAC merger with Astrea Acquisition Corp. and To learn more, and to review the preliminary proxy statement relating to the transaction, visit

About HotelPlanner

HotelPlanner is a leading travel technology company that combines proprietary artificial intelligence capabilities, and a 24/7 global gig-based reservations and customer service network. HotelPlanner travel agents can customize all traveler hotel and accommodation needs from a single platform while providing localized advice. HotelPlanner is one of the world’s leading providers of individual, group and corporate travel bookings, specializing in unique “Closed User Group” discount rates offered in unpublished private sale environments. Founded in 2004, HotelPlanner has enduring partnerships with the world’s largest online travel agencies, well-known hotel chains, individual hotels, online wedding providers, ancillary lodging providers, corporations, professional and youth sports teams and franchises, universities and government agencies.

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About the American Group Travel Awards (AGTA)

The American Group Travel Awards was founded in 2014 by Tim Hentschel, Co-founder & CEO of HotelPlanner. AGTA honors the finest in group travel with awards given to leading suppliers who deliver best-in-class group travel experiences across North America. This black-tie charity gala is typically held at a premium hotel in Miami and for many years has been hosted by Dylan Ratigan. This event is attended by HotelPlanner senior executives, suppliers, customers and partners from well-known hotel chains, affiliate partners, the media, as well as celebrity VIPs and entertainment. All donations go directly to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. To learn more, visit

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