Editorial Board   

Mr. Boni

Paolo Boni

President & Chief Executive Officer, VFM Leonardo, Inc.

Paolo Boni has been leading VFM Leonardo's vision and strategic direction since 2001. Under his leadership, the company has expanded globally and now has over 80,000 hotels, over 30,000 travel related website partners worldwide and the largest online visual content distribution network for the travel industry. As a recognized travel industry expert, Mr. Boni frequently speaks at major travel conferences on subjects relating to online travel marketing, online hotel merchandising and rich media. Since 2003, Mr. Boni has been a regular speaker and panelist at Hotel Electronic Distribution Network Association (HEDNA) conferences, including HEDNA Miami 2003, Frankfurt 2006 on and New Orleans 2008 on the transformation of distribution, customer experience, consolidation and the future of the online travel industry. In 2006, Mr. Boni spoke at the Eye For Travel - Travel Distribution Summit's (TDS) in Europe and Chicago, on the impact of rich media on consumers' hotel booking decisions and the Travelcom conference on using compelling content to build hotel brands online. He was a panelist on destination marketing to young adults at the Educational Seminar For Tourism Organizations (ESTO) and the online marketing roundtable at the MMG Vail Summit Senior Travel Executive Forum. More recently, Mr. Boni presented at the Hotel Association of Canada's Annual Conference 2008 on guerrilla marketing and marketing in the 21st century. Mr. Boni holds an LL.B. from Osgoode Hall Law School (1993) and a B.A. Economics from McGill University (1989). He was formerly a Partner with leading Canadian business law firm, Davies, Ward, Phillips & Vineberg LLP, practicing in securities and corporate law with an emphasis on corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions. VFM Leonardo is the leader in online hotel merchandising with the largest, universally accepted online visual content distribution network (VNetwork) for the global travel industry. VFM Leonardo's VBrochure and VScape products leverage the distribution capabilities of the VNetwork and are the most effective visual content management and merchandising systems available to hoteliers today. For more information about VFM Leonardo, visit http://www.vfmleonardo.com

Mr. Boni can be contacted at 1-877-593-6634 or press@vfmleonardo.com

Coming up in January 2020...

Mobile Technology: Meeting Tech Expectations

What once seemed futuristic is now the norm, owing to the escalating developments in mobile technology, and hotels must continue to innovate in order to meet guest expectations. In a recent study from Mower, 65 percent of guests said they would gladly pay more for a hotel that provides the mobile technology they deem essential. The same study shows that 44 percent of travelers are more likely to book a smart hotel, and nearly 7 in 10 want to use smart devices provided by the hotel. And how do guests wish to use all this technology? A majority expressed a desire for mobile check-in and check-out, and mobile payment options. They also want to be able to stream content from their phone to the TV; to make service requests of the hotel staff; to control in-room lighting, temperature and sound; to order food and beverages; and to request a wake-up call - all from their mobile device. Guests also expressed preferences for robust wi-fi and convenient device charging ports throughout the hotel. They also appreciate the use of hotel branded apps which allow a guest to book a room, access loyalty programs, receive discounts and rewards, and even use the app to choose the room, floor and view they prefer. Some hotel apps also allow a customer to track their charges throughout their stay, rather than waiting to receive a bill at the end. Finally, mobile tech lounges are popping up more frequently in some hotels. These lounges offer guests the opportunity to perform tasks like airline check-ins or access to local info guides, but they also provide a place where guests can comfortably get some work done outside their room. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to meet their customers' expectations in the mobile technology space.