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AUGUST: Food and Beverage: Going Local

Gabriele Kurz

I fondly remember my grandfather’s very own vegetable patch where he meticulously grew, besides other delicious contributions to the family kitchen, exactly 31 chive plants. Why 31 you ask? Well, my grandfather was neither a restaurateur nor had many hungry eaters in our family he simply was a gourmand hence very particular when it came to fresh produce, quality and taste. Subsequently, one organically grown chive plant to harvest each day of the month was what he wanted to satisfy his quality requirements. Nothing could compete with the crisp taste of these freshly harvested chives of ours taken straight from the garden to the dish without having ever seen a refrigerator. READ MORE

David  Garcelon

Hotels with restaurants and bars are continually challenged to compete with freestanding food and beverage operations. I believe that many hotels and resorts however may have a unique opportunity to exploit a consumer trend that shows no sign of waning in popularity. In many cases a hotel or resorts location, physical plant, diversity of talent and volume may help them to create compelling programs to supply local ingredients for hotel guests READ MORE

Mark Sherwin

Sonesta International Hotels offers Liquid Art as homage to locally sourced ingredients in craft cocktails, local small batch spirits and ales, throughout the property regional wine lists and even down to the coffee served. This provides another opportunity to create a sense of place for our guests, extending the local inspiration found in our hotel design and décor into the menus for food and beverage. Examples from our full service hotels and resorts help illustrate how our beverage teams are delivering Liquid Art in new and innovative ways. READ MORE

Laurence Bernstein

Running restaurants in your hotel that are meeting points and social and business hubs for people in the local community is not as hard (or as hopeless) as it might seem. In this article we identify the four determining factors that can guide an orator to success in this area. As with just about anything, the first thing to do when embarking on a project, is find out who is doing it well and watch what they are doing. To this end we discuss some of the most successful hotel restaurants, and by understanding the history and context of their success, we can clearly see how by understanding and implementing the four determinants, even the smallest hotel in the most competitive market, can design and operate restaurants and bars that are attractive to the local community. And do so profitably. READ MORE

Coming Up In The September Online Hotel Business Review


Feature Focus
Hotel Group Meetings: There is Good News
The good news for those hotels that host Group Meetings and Conferences is that there is good news. The effects of the Great Recession have mostly worn off and corporations are now investing again in training and development, which translates into a robust booking pace. And though demand is strong, there are new developments within this sector that must be addressed in order to effectively compete, and to meet the expectations of conference attendees. First, and perhaps foremost, is wireless communications. According to a recent survey, the average participant arrives at a conference with three mobile devices in tow so it is imperative that a WiFi network be free, fast and reliable. And though this is the #1 issue for planning professionals in the meetings business today, there are numerous other concerns. There is a growing trend to incorporate out-of-the-ordinary occasions into the Group Meeting experience. Some examples of this might include partnering with local venues such as wineries; natural and historic wonders; intriguing adventure resources; and unique off-site reception and dinner venues - all of which might be a factor in deciding where to locate for a conference. Team-building activities are also making a resurgence. Some groups are looking for unusual ways to motivate, inspire, and build camaraderie, which might include a volunteerism initiative, like building bikes for kids in the local community. Of course, food and beverage options are also important and like the trend in hotel restaurants, planners want a variety of healthy choices to be available for meal menus and refreshment breaks. They are looking for food and beverages that will “perk up” their participants, not lull them into lethargy. The September Hotel Business Review will examine what some hotels are doing to facilitate this segment of their business in order to meet the expectations of group planners and attendees.