Editorial Board

Mr. Keating Jr.

Richard J. Keating Jr.

Partner / Chair Retail and Hospitality Practice Group, Swanson, Martin & Bell, LLP

Richard J. Keating, Jr. is a partner and chair of the Retail and Hospitality Practice Group at Swanson, Martin & Bell, LLP in Chicago. Mr. Keating represents restaurants, concert venues, amusement venues, health clubs and retail businesses throughout the United States. His practice focuses on tort litigation, premises liability defense, general liability matters, incident investigations and security claims. Before entering private practice, Mr. Keating was a criminal prosecutor for the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office for nine years. Mr. Keating also worked in an investigations unit where he supervised a team of attorneys investigating crimes in conjunction with police authorities. Prior to becoming an attorney, Mr. Keating spent four years in the corporate sector working at AT&T in the small business market. Mr. Keating routinely combines his litigation and criminal prosecution experience with his understanding of corporate business objectives to advise his hospitality clients about various potential and existing legal concerns. Mr. Keating is a member of the Academy of Hospitality Industry Attorneys, Defense Research Institute’s Retail and Hospitality Defense Committee, and the Illinois Restaurant Association. He received his J.D. from Chicago-Kent College of Law and his B.S. from Indiana University. Please visit www.smbtrials.com for more information.

Mr. Keating Jr. can be contacted at 312-222-8568 or rkeating@smbtrials.com

Coming up in January 2018...

Mobile Technology: Relentless Innovation

Technology has become a crucial component in attracting and retaining hotel guests, and the need to enhance a guest’s technology experience is driving a relentless pace of innovation. To meet and exceed guest expectations, 54% of hotels will spend more on technology in 2018, and mobile solutions in particular will top the list of capital investments. Many hotels are integrating mobile booking, mobile keys, mobile payments and mobile check-in into their operations. Other hotels are emphasizing the in-room experience, boosting bandwidth and upgrading flat screen TVs to more easily interface with guest mobile devices. And though not yet mainstream, there are many exciting technology developments on the near horizon. The Internet of Things (loT) is taking form in some places, and can be found in guest room control systems, voice activation systems, and in wearable sensors that can be used for access and payment options. Virtual reality headsets are available at some hotels so guests can enjoy virtual trips to exotic locations or if off-property, preview conference facilities and guest rooms. How long will it be before a hotel employs a fleet of robots for room service, or utilizes a hologram as a concierge, or installs gesture-controlled walls that feature interactive digital displays? Some hotels are already using augmented reality for translation services, or interactive wall maps, or even virtual décor. This pace of innovation is challenging property owners and brands to stay on top of the latest technology trends while still addressing current projects. The January Hotel Business Review will explore what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in the mobile technology space.