Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Michael

Petra Michael

Founder & CEO, SkyBlue™ LLC

Renown bedding technology innovator and “Queen of Bed Bugs” Petra Michael (formerly Minoff) has revolutionized the retail and hospitality protective bedding industry. In 2005, while working as a contractor for a leading protective bedding company, she conceptualized the now industry-standard bedding encasement. She has been credited with being instrumental in designing and developing the world’s first scientifically proven bed bug isolation and control device. Ms. Michael's award-winning protective bedding innovations have provided a sound investment for hotel owners and managers interested in reducing costs and mitigating risks associated with potential bed bug infestation. Now she is taking that idea one step further. Her expertise in biology and chemistry, along with training in textile design, have enabled her to create the next-generation solution—combining protective performance with style in a bedding encasement designed exclusively for hoteliers and retailers worldwide. In 2011, Ms. Michael founded SkyBlue™ LLC, the world’s first company dedicated to the design and development of stylized protective bedding encasements that safeguard bedding investments while enhancing beds’ visual appeal. SkyBlue’s revolutionary DreamTec™ bedding technology offers advanced protection from bed bugs, as well as stains and liquids, in an attractive streamlined encasement style that complements the look of any guestroom. The DreamTec line offers a selection of designer-quality, top-of-the-bed fabrics that are Nanotex® treated to strengthen the material and provide world-class stain and fluid resistance. Plus, its patent-pending BB-Lock™ technology provides maximum control of bed bug entry and escape along with bite-proof protection. Ms. Michael’s focus on protecting bedding investments, while managing total cost of maintenace without tradeoffs for ease of use and asthetic value, is unique in the industry. A popular speaker at hospitality conferences and events, and a sought-out expert on bed bug control for the industry, Ms. Michael has been quoted in key publications including Lodging Magazine, Lodging Hospitality, and HotelLawyer.com. Her proactive Bed Bug procedures and prevention recommendations have been distributed to thousands of hotel owners/operators by hotel corporations and management companies worldwide. In addition to producing game-changing solutions for hotels, she consults with hotel owners, designers, and manufacturers across the country to develop and implement an aggressive approach to eradicating bed bug infestation. Ms. Michael graduated from Edith Stein Gymnasium in Germany with a major in Chemistry. She also has a degree in fashion design from Academia d' Alta Moda Koefia in Rome, Italy. Born in Germany, she speaks German, English, French, Italian, and Spanish.

Ms. Michael can be contacted at 650-877.2331 or info@skybluetextiles.com

Coming up in February 2018...

Social Media: Engagement is Key

There are currently 2.3 billion active users of social media networks and savvy hotel operators have incorporated social media into their marketing mix. There are a few Goliath channels on which one must have a presence (Facebook & Twitter) but there are also several newer upstart channels (Instagram, Snapchat &WeChat, for example) that merit consideration. With its 1.86 billion users, Facebook is a dominant platform where operators can drive brand awareness, facilitate bookings, offer incentives and collect sought-after reviews. Twitter's 284 million users generate 500 million tweets per day, and operators can use its platform for lead generation, building loyalty, and guest interaction. Instagram was originally a small photo-sharing site but it has blown up into a massive photo and video channel. The site can be used to post photos of the hotel property, as well as creating Instagram Stories - personal videos that disappear from the channel after 24 hours. In this regard, Instagram and Snapchat are now in direct competition. WeChat is a Chinese company whose aim is to be the App for Everything - instant messaging, social media, shopping and payment services - all in a single platform. In addition to these channels, blogging continues to be a popular method to establish leadership, enhance reputations, and engage with customers in a direct and personal way. The key to effective use of all social media is to find out where your customers are and then, to the fullest extent possible, engage with them on a personal level. This engagement is what creates a personal connection and sustains brand loyalty. The February Hotel Business Review will explore these issues and examine how some hotels are successfully integrating social media into their operations.