Editorial Board

Mr. Van

Steve Van

President & CEO, Prism Hotels

Steve Van, President and CEO of Prism Hotels & Resorts, founded the Dallas-based company in 1983 and continues to lead the company on its mission to have The Most Satisfied Owners. A prominent speaker and sought-after expert in the hospitality industry, Mr. Van was recognized by Hotel Business Magazine as one of the trade’s “People of 2012.” In the past few years Mr. Van has focused his teams’ efforts on going from Good to Great with the primary focus on operational excellence. Prism’s current successes include managing the largest Hyatt Regency franchise, the 580 room Hyatt Regency LAX, the 420 room Hilton El Conquistador Resort in Tucson, the historic 300 room Hilton Baton Rouge Capital Center, the 1,000,000 square feet and 600 room state-of-the-art Las Vegas Training Center for the United Brotherhood of Carpenters and the award-winning Embassy Suites Medical Center in Oklahoma City among many others. Mr. Van currently serves on a number of industry boards including the Hilton Doubletree Hotel Owner’s Advisory Council and served on the Starwood Hotels Owner’s Advisory Council for creation of Aloft Hotels. Mr. Van earned his bachelor’s degree from The University of Texas, attended The University of Texas Law School and was admitted to the State Bar of Texas. He has served as the Assistant Attorney General of Texas and as a Director of the Texas Turnpike Authority. Since 2008 he has been a Founding Director of AHMSA, a nonprofit based in Bogota, Columbia to teach internal refugees entrepreneurial skills to lift their families out of poverty. AHMSA is now supported by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation along with the United Nations. Mr. Van was the youngest Director of NATO’s US Arm, the Atlantic Treaty Assembly, and was presented with the Vincentian Ethics Scholar Award in 2006 in recognition of his valuable contributions in fostering business ethics research. Mr. Van is also the co-founder of the Texas Lyceum Association.

Mr. Van can be contacted at 214-257-1011 or steve.van@prismhotels.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.