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Picking Up The Pace

Hotel Interactive - 25 July 2017
First Hospitality Group Ramps Up Development Through Urban Projects. Acknowledging the lodging industry is still in the development phase of the cycle, First Hospitality Group (FHG) President and CEO Robert Habeeb emphasized that the company has ratcheted up its growth pace in recent years and has a bevy of projects underway. The Rosemont, IL-based management, acquisition and development firm—which has some 46 hotels in its primarily Midwestern portfolio—expects to open four properties in total in 2017, in addition to a pair of planned acquisitions, and could add as many as seven properties next year.
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Behind The Brand

Hotel Interactive - 20 July 2017
The relationship between design and the ultimate success of a brand cannot be understated. As such, the recently concluded BITAC®: Purchasing & Design East played host to a panel discussion entitled “Design Details That Help Define A Brand,” which touched on a range of design related issues from giving a property a sense of place to fully exploiting social media opportunities.
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McNeill Hotel Company Acquires Three Hotels

Hotel Interactive - 20 July 2017
McNeill Hotel Company announced today that it has acquired three hotels in the Mountain states, adding to the company’s growing portfolio and significantly expanding its geographic footprint. The announcement was made by Mark Ricketts, the company’s President and Chief Operating Officer. The three hotels are: 110-room Homewood Suites in Boise, Idaho. 107-room Hilton Garden Inn in Twin Falls, Idaho. 106-room Hampton Inn and Suites in Salt Lake City - West Jordan, Utah.
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Sweetening The Pot

Hotel Interactive - 19 July 2017
In late April, the All-Suites brands by Hilton announced the opening of its 800th property, the Homewood Suites by Hilton New Orleans French Quarter. Comprising nearly 15 percent of Hilton’s total portfolio, these three all suites brands—Embassy Suites by Hilton, Homewood Suites by Hilton and Home2 Suites by Hilton—together total approximately 120,000 keys worldwide and another 530 properties are in their collective global pipeline. The success is largely the result of the hotel company’s December 2015 repositioning of the three all-suites brands into a single portfolio, which Bill Duncan, global head for Hilton All Suites, credits as realigning resources and support for brands that share common synergies and opportunities.
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Remodeling Challenges

Hotel Interactive - 13 July 2017
During a hotel stay, guests expect their bathrooms to have a fresh and modern look. Old, dated or damaged bathtubs, wall surrounds, vanities or toilets reflect poorly on the hotel’s brand. As such, many hotels regularly replace bathroom components to maintain customer satisfaction and earn positive reviews and loyalty in return.

RLH Corporation Files Lawsuit Against Hard Rock Cafe International

Hotel Interactive - 13 July 2017
RLH Corporation (NYSE:RLH) today announced the filing of a lawsuit against Hard Rock Café International in federal court in New York. The complaint alleges, among other things, that Hard Rock copied RLH Corporation’s distinctive trade dress for its Hotel RL brand, which is protected by federal trade dress law.

HFF Closes The Sale Of Two-Property Hotel Portfolio Near Los Angeles Airport

Hotel Interactive - 13 July 2017
Holliday Fenoglio Fowler, L.P. (HFF) announced today that it has closed the sale of a two-property, 596-room hotel portfolio comprising an Aloft and Fairfield Inn & Suites proximate to Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) in the Los Angeles-area community of El Segundo, California, for an undisclosed price.
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Soft Brand Strategies

Hotel Interactive - 12 July 2017
The meteoric rise of soft brands throughout the lodging landscape in recent years has been well-chronicled. As such, executives from three major brand companies recently elaborated on what’s been driving the segment’s widespread success.

How Would You React To An Onsite Fire?

Hotel Interactive - 5 July 2017
In the past few months, my neighborhood in Toronto has seen two, five-alarm fires. Fortunately, in both cases, there was no loss of life nor personal injuries reported. In one instance, a residence only a few months after completion experienced an attic conflagration, destroying a family’s dream of a domestic paradise. As for the other, a recently renovated, century-old racquet club inferno left more than a thousand members ‘in the cold’ with no preferred meeting place or exercise facility.

Not Going By The Book

Hotel Interactive - 3 July 2017
Recent data shows that more than half of all digital travel booked in 2016 was done with the use of a mobile device, proving that mobile distribution has replaced desktop as the leading way in which consumers research and book travel. Furthermore, according to Forrester Research, 55 percent of adults are likely to abandon their online transaction if they cannot find a quick answer to their question or problem.

Technology Of Tomorrow

Hotel Interactive - 28 June 2017
Hospitality technology industry executives took their show North of the Border this year as the 2017 HITEC Conference underscored the age-old axiom that ‘the only thing that stays the same is change.’ Held at the Toronto Convention Centre, the event kicked off yesterday morning with a keynote address that touted the benefits of block chain technology and how that could impact business in the future. Delivered by Alex Tapscott, CEO, NextBlock Global, the session was entitled “Blockchain Revolution: Surviving And Thriving In The 2nd Era Of The Internet.”

Who Should Attend Industry Events?

Hotel Interactive - 13 June 2017
Hotel tradeshows and conventions are an excellent opportunity to keep pace with all the latest products, news and concepts in our ever-evolving industry. There are many such events happening on a year-round timetable and all around the world, so much so that you could hypothetically spend every week in another city and at another hospitality conference or symposium.
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Training Your Team To Be Locally Authentic

Hotel Interactive - 5 June 2017
By now, the phrase ‘local authentic experience’ has been tattooed on every hotelier’s back ever since it started to trend some five to 10 years ago. And yet, even to this day many properties have some serious shortcomings in this area, either through a lack of attention to detail when it comes to soft goods and decor items with local flair, or associates’ lack of knowledge regarding the immediate neighborhood.
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Creating Value Through Strategic Capital Planning

Hotel Interactive - 24 May 2017
As asset managers, we are finding ourselves investing more time on capital planning and execution than ever before. While hotel profits and available funds for capital projects are at high levels, discipline is required to spend wisely to protect owner investments and ensure projected returns are achieved. The brands are not always aligned with owners on these priorities, as they are often focused on enhancing brand position rather than asset value.
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How To Approach A New Hotel Website

Hotel Interactive - 22 May 2017
Everyone knows you need a functional website, no matter the business or the locale. For hotels, most of us recognize that often a website may be a customer’s first introduction to your property. As such, it should entice, educate and make them want to stay with you.

First Hospitality Group Inc. Honored With Two Prestigious Awards

Hotel Interactive - 22 May 2017
First Hospitality Group, Inc. (FHG), a leading hotel management, acquisition and development company, announced today that its Residence Inn Grand Rapids West hotel was awarded the “Residence Inn Community Service Hotel of the Year” award, while its director of sales for the Fairfield Inn & Suites Columbus Airport, Machelle Collins, was awarded the 2016 Fairfield Inn & Suites “Sales Manager of the Year” award. FHG President & CEO Bob Habeeb made the announcement.
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Women Working Toward Future

Hotel Interactive - 19 May 2017
A handful of female executives convened during the Independent Executive Lodging Summit (ILES) earlier this week to chart the progress of women within the lodging industry ranks and detail some of the top challenges they face moving forward.
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Hundreds Of Hoteliers To Descend On Capitol Hill For AH&LA, AAHOA Members To Meet With Congressional Leaders

Hotel Interactive - 17 May 2017
The Asian American Hotel Owners Association (AAHOA) and the American Hotel & Lodging Association (AHLA) join forces on May 17-18 as nearly 500 hoteliers from across the country come to Washington, D.C. for a joint hotel day on Capitol Hill. During the two-day Legislative Action Summit (LAS), hoteliers will raise awareness with Congressional leaders and hold some 250 meetings about the strength of the lodging industry and its meaningful impact on communities around the country.
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Taking The Direct Approach

Hotel Interactive - 15 May 2017
Today’s highly competitive hospitality environment makes increasing the amount of direct business a hotel secures a top priority for all property owners. Direct business comes with fewer third-party fees, higher profit margins and ultimately supports a hotel’s bottom line, and there are several tactics and strategies that help drive more direct bookings for hotel properties.

The Importance Of A Hotel Career Over A Hotel Job

Hotel Interactive - 11 May 2017
As the gig economy continues to take hold in various industries, it is also changing how we think about our chosen line of work. The 9-to-5 office is eroding while working from home—that is, flex hours—and working whenever you want behaviors are gaining widespread acceptance. The impacts for hotels are many, and not all of them are good.

Dealing With Data Breaches

Hotel Interactive - 9 May 2017
InterContinental Hotels Group recently revealed that a previously reported breach of its computer system was much larger than initially thought, with more than 1,000 of its properties compromised with malicious software designed to steal customer debit and credit card information. Of course, this is a serious problem that many in the hospitality industry have faced. In fact, more than a dozen large-scale data breaches to hotels have been reported since 2010, affecting both major multi-national hotel chains and companies with single-number properties.
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Repositioning Effort

Hotel Interactive - 8 May 2017
In its first quarterly report as a publicly traded REIT, Park Hotels & Resorts, Inc. announced plans to reposition its portfolio by recycling the bottom 10 to 15 percent over the course of the next several years.
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Next-Generation Golfers

Hotel Interactive - 4 May 2017
Golf is a game for all age groups, but like most sports it’s best learned at a young age when good habits and good techniques can take hold before bad habits have a chance to win out. As such, the next generation of golfers—and golf resort guests—must have quality instruction and quality facilities. Golf resorts that have top-level junior camps and academies not only are creating future golfers, but future customers.
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Not Your Mama's Bandwidth

Hotel Interactive - 3 May 2017
Industrywide studies continue to show that improving bandwidth is a top priority at hotels across the country. That operational priority is driven directly by consumers, who have been saying for years that bandwidth—or in guest terms “reliable, fast online access”—is a critically important feature that shapes the guest stay and experience.
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Tracking Technology's Progress

Hotel Interactive - 2 May 2017
Executives from a range of technology companies tried to provide hoteliers at the recent BITAC® Tech, Sales & Operation event a roadmap for future success when it comes to adopting the latest innovations and achieving an ROI. A panel entitled “Bettering Your Business Through Technology” brought together executives from companies ranging from providers of software to lock systems, as well as PCI compliance solutions.
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Fundamental Shift

Hotel Interactive - 28 April 2017
Growth opportunities are becoming a little harder to find as the hotel industry moves deeper into the current cycle and fundamentals begin to shift, according to hotel executives at this week’s BITAC® Tech, Sales & Operations event.

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