Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Brock

Colby Brock

F&B Director and Interior Designer/Project Manager, The Radisson Hotel New Rochelle

Colby Brock obtained a Bachelor of Arts Degree with a double major in Psychology and English from the University of Hartford. She interned for the Radisson Hotel New Rochelle while attending college and began working there full-time in 1999 as restaurant manager. In 2008, while continuing to manage the City Lounge at the Radisson, Ms. Brock pursued a degree in Interior Design form Parsons School of Design in Manhattan. She then joined as a designer for Mojo Stumer Associates, an architectural design firm. One of the projects she worked on was the re-design of the Radisson’s lobby. In 2011, Ms. Brock returned to the Radisson as the Food and Beverage Director, Interior Designer/Project Manager, with responsibility for overseeing the $2 million renovation program to re-position the hotel as a stylish, contemporary, Manhattan boutique hotel. The scope of the project included upgrades of all 129 guest rooms, the lobby, elevators, hospitality suites and the re-branding of its restaurant which opened on May 15, 2012 as NoMa Social. Everything about the new dining destination reflects Ms. Brock’s design sensibility and understanding of the vital role that F&B plays in enhancing the hotel experience of today’s sophisticated traveler. To help make NoMa Social feel like a second home for visitors, a ‘library décor’ was created, one that is eclectic, with warm purple and gray colors, yet chic at the same time. The space includes numerous comfortable couches and low cocktail tables that can accommodate a variety of group sizes, as well as more traditional seating. The Mediterranean menu, created by acclaimed executive chef Bill Rosenberg, offers tapas and other small plates that can be shared in surroundings that promote a relaxing and interactive dining experience. Ms. Brock’s contributions to the Radisson Hotel New Rochelle’s improvements were instrumental in the hotel winning a “Renovation Excellence Award” from the Radisson’s parent company, Carlson, one of the world’s largest hospitality and travel groups. Ms. Brock is also responsible for the hotel’s floor management, staff training, corporate and social function contracts, menu and promotional creations as well as the hotel’s public relations, marketing, promotion and advertising program. For the past 16 years, she has been a strong supporter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s Westchester/Hudson Valley Chapter where she is currently serving as a member of the Board of Trustees. She is married to Mario Gualano.

Ms. Brock can be contacted at 914-576-3700 or colby.brock@radisson.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.