Group Meetings
Ivan Tamayo
  • Group Meetings
  • Unconventional Event Spaces in Today's Boutique Hotels
  • Since first coined in the early 1980s, the boutique hotel is one with quite the noteworthy story. Though a story of evolution, its true claim to fame is how its model has changed the industry. A look at today’s hotel landscape showcases the undeniable influence boutique hotels, generally 100 rooms or less and almost always independently owned and many times self-managed, have had on the industry. Whether in design, location, in-room amenity options, or the locally supported one-off venues that make every ‘must see’ destination guide, the distinctive characteristics that define these hidden gems have gone mainstream. Read on...

Jason Lewis-Purcell
  • Group Meetings
  • The Key to Unlocking the MICE Industry for Hotels
  • A lot is said about maximizing hotel revenue per available room, but what of revenue per available square meter? It’s a broadened mindset that may be needed from any hotel that aspires to attract the world’s several million business travelers to their property but doesn’t quite know where to begin. Indeed, as Hotel Analyst’s Katherine Doggrell recently observed: “MICE has been a thorn in the side of the sector since windowless rooms with biscuits were invented. Any hotel worth its salt has to have them, but selling them is ... hardly an efficient process. Dead space in which many go to die.” Read on...

Greg Hopton-Jones
  • Group Meetings
  • Getting Creative to Make an Experience Not Just Another Meeting
  • Industry metrics have 2017 poised to be another banner year in the meetings business. The trend looks to only continue into the foreseeable future presenting new challenges and opportunities to meet, and hopefully exceed, the expectations of the client, planner, and hotel alike in this dynamic environment in which we find ourselves. The influx of meetings has increased over the last few years considerably along with the expectation to create a memorable ‘experience’ has meeting planners and hotels donning the ‘creative hat’ more frequently to provide a unique event that resonates long after the meeting has concluded. Read on...

Bob McIntosh
  • Group Meetings
  • Not All Meetings are Created Equally
  • We see so much written these days on the similarities and differences in the lifestyles of Millennials, Gen X, Gen Y and Baby Boomers. How are Hoteliers navigating through these differences and similarities so the investment in bringing so many people together for a meeting is realized by the host? While some may think the answers are very obvious, there certainly are opportunities for individual hotels and brands to make their mark and make claim to more market share. At the end of the day, market share defines how effective our brand message, marketing dollars and direct sales efforts are serving our owners and associates who depend on those results for their livelihood. Read on...

Jay Spurr
  • Group Meetings
  • Making it Easy for Meeting Planners to Go Green
  • Meeting planners have more than enough to think about when it comes to searching for the perfect venue – and eco-consciousness is increasingly making its way top of mind for many. It is currently estimated that the average hotel guest generates 2.2 pounds of waste each night of their stay. And, with the meetings and event industry recently being deemed as the second most wasteful sector in the United States by the EPA, we at JW Marriott Austin knew we had to go above and beyond to deliver more efficient meetings and events with the lowest possible carbon footprint. Read on...

Del Robinette
  • Group Meetings
  • The Importance of Engagement During the Selling Process
  • Engagement and commitment are at the core of our professional lives in a 24 hour a day, 7 day a week operation. No matter the size or complexity of the box, engagement and our commitments should be a core fundamental that not only surfaces in our every interaction, but guides and directs our proactive decision making and our strategies and executions. Hospitality 101 teaches us as hospitality professionals, to engage with our guests, to make eye contact at 10 feet, to speak within 5, to escort when possible and to use our guests name in conversation. Read on...

Katie  Davis
  • Group Meetings
  • Creative Meetings Through Food & Beverage
  • I had a bit of an “out of body” experience recently. I was attending a corporate meeting, which was held in a hotel meeting room. As usual, I was multi-tasking for most of the meeting. Doing my best to remain engaged with the meeting content, while simultaneously managing an ever-growing email inbox and “To Do” list. During a break, I was pacing outside the meeting room, on the phone with my office, when I noticed some snacks and beverages set-up adjacent to the meeting room entrance. Read on...

Deirdre Martin Yack
  • Group Meetings
  • Staying Relevant in the Constantly Changing World of Meetings
  • Meeting planning in today’s world is more complex than ever. Whether you’re a planner or a supplier, our jobs are now 24/7. We are dealing with shorter lead times than ever, tighter budgets (on both sides), and expectations based on the perfection projected by social media and reality TV. Our job is no longer simply about dates, space, rate – we now need to compete at a world-class level on a daily basis. As a supplier, it takes extreme creativity at the venue level. Starting with the initial design, event space must be as flexible, innovative and as Instagram-worthy as possible. Read on...

Jim Vandevender
  • Group Meetings
  • Staying Competitive in the Group Meeting Market
  • As demand for hotel rooms drives increasing ADRs and climbing occupancy rates, hotel sales teams and revenue managers are honing sales strategies, evaluating deployment and group segment potential, and strategically choosing the right mix of room inventory allotted to their transient and group segments. Pursuing the best segments and selling smartly is the name of the game in an economic environment in which many hotels can afford to be particular about the business they book. For many years, it has been easier to analyze market performance for the transient segment than the group segment because of the availability of data to paint a clear picture of what is driving a market’s actualized activity. However, it is now becoming just as clear for the group side due to recent advances in technology. Read on...

Kevin   Fliess
  • Group Meetings
  • Group Business Strategies for Every Season
  • Seasonality is a blessing and curse for hospitality professionals who want to plan ahead. Cvent’s customer success team receives calls, emails, and tweets every day from hoteliers looking to take the reins of the data they’ve already collected to fill need periods. Whether they want to maintain repeat group business or expand to new markets, so many of our partners value the importance of using predictable, recurring behaviors to make strong sales and marketing strategies that last. Read on...

Jill Farley
  • Group Meetings
  • Sales Managers and Meeting Planners: Different Hats - Same Team
  • Hotel sales managers and meeting planners have been working together for decades. We have had our ups and downs with everything and anything that could go right and wrong. That said, at the day we are here for our clients and guests. With that common ground established; now how do we achieve our common goal? For me, I am 100% transparent with my meeting planners, groups, and guests. I teach my team to not be in it for the next best group that comes along. We want to create strong partnerships with our colleagues for the long haul. Read on...

Dana Orlando
Michael Pisterzi
  • Group Meetings
  • The eRFP: Growing Pains, Remedies, and Preparing for the Future
  • The modern bridge that connects hoteliers and meeting planners becomes more overburdened and scrutinized by the day. Through trial and error, mountains of feedback from users, and various platform improvements the electronic request for proposal has become the undeniable standard in sourcing for the meeting planning industry. However, as most of us know, the process is still far from perfect. Read on...

Andy Langston
  • Group Meetings
  • Up Grade Your Meetings with Wi-Fi
  • Guest Wi-Fi is a powerful way for hotels to create a personalized, memorable experience for group meetings. This article provides tips for hotel on how they can use guest Wi-Fi to engage meetings guests, build brand recognition, and to leverage Wi-Fi as an effective marketing tool to sell to business customers who will be clamoring to secure your meetings space for their next event. Read on...

Sam Smith
  • Group Meetings
  • The Best Tools for Planning a Successful Conference
  • Planning a trade show or conference is no easy feat, but planning a successful conference is far more difficult. The weeks and months leading up to the event can demand a lot of long hours and stress and any event planner will quickly become intimately familiar with Murphy’s Law. With this in mind, there are a lot of tools available that will make planning these events far less stressful. On top of that, there are apps, software, and digital tools that can actually make the event itself go much more smoothly. Read on...

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OCTOBER: Revenue Management: Technology and Big Data

Gary Isenberg

Hotel room night inventory is the hotel industry’s most precious commodity. Hotel revenue management has evolved into a complex and fragmented process. Today’s onsite revenue manager is influenced greatly by four competing forces, each armed with their own set of revenue goals and objectives -- as if there are virtually four individual revenue managers, each with its own distinct interests. So many divergent purposes oftentimes leading to conflicts that, if left unchecked, can significantly damper hotel revenues and profits. Read on...

Jon Higbie

For years, hotels have housed their Revenue Management systems on their premises. This was possible because data sets were huge but manageable, and required large but not overwhelming amounts of computing power. However, these on-premise systems are a thing of the past. In the era of Big Data, the cost of building and maintaining an extensive computing infrastructure is incredibly expensive. The solution – cloud computing. The cloud allows hotels to create innovative Revenue Management applications that deliver revenue uplift and customized guest experiences. Without the cloud, hotels risk remaining handcuffed to their current Revenue Management solutions – and falling behind competitors. Read on...

Jenna Smith

You do not have to be a hospitality professional to recognize the influx and impact of new technologies in the hotel industry. Guests are becoming familiar with using virtual room keys on their smartphones to check in, and online resources like review sites and online travel agencies (OTAs) continue to shape the way consumers make decisions and book rooms. Behind the scenes, sales and marketing professionals are using new tools to communicate with guests, enhance operational efficiencies, and improve service by addressing guests’ needs and solving problems quickly and with a minimum of disruption. Read on...

Yatish Nathraj

Technology is becoming an ever more growing part of the hospitality industry and it has helped us increase efficiency for guest check-inn, simplified the night audit process and now has the opportunity to increase our revenue production. These systems need hands on calibration to ensure they are optimized for your operations. As a manager you need to understand how these systems work and what kind of return on investment your business is getting. Although some of these systems maybe mistaken as a “set it and forget it” product, these highly sophisticated tools need local expert like you and your team to analysis the data it gives you and input new data requirements. Read on...

Coming Up In The November Online Hotel Business Review

Feature Focus
Architecture & Design: Authentic, Interactive and Immersive
If there is one dominant trend in the field of hotel architecture and design, it’s that travelers are demanding authentic, immersive and interactive experiences. This is especially true for Millennials but Baby Boomers are seeking out meaningful experiences as well. As a result, the development of immersive travel experiences - winery resorts, culinary resorts, resorts geared toward specific sports enthusiasts - will continue to expand. Another kind of immersive experience is an urban resort – one that provides all the elements you'd expect in a luxury resort, but urbanized. The urban resort hotel is designed as a staging area where the city itself provides all the amenities, and the hotel functions as a kind of sophisticated concierge service. Another trend is a re-thinking of the hotel lobby, which has evolved into an active social hub with flexible spaces for work and play, featuring cafe?s, bars, libraries, computer stations, game rooms, and more. The goal is to make this area as interactive as possible and to bring people together, making the space less of a traditional hotel lobby and more of a contemporary gathering place. This emphasis on the lobby has also had an associated effect on the size of hotel rooms – they are getting smaller. Since most activities are designed to take place in the lobby, there is less time spent in rooms which justifies their smaller design. Finally, the wellness and ecology movements are also having a major impact on design. The industry is actively adopting standards so that new structures are not only environmentally sustainable, but also promote optimum health and well- being for the travelers who will inhabit them. These are a few of the current trends in the fields of hotel architecture and design that will be examined in the November issue of the Hotel Business Review.