Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Cepeda

Javier Cepeda

Regional Vice President, LEVEL Furnished Living

In his role as regional vice president of LEVEL Furnished Living, Javier Cepeda leads the opening and overall brand growth strategy for the Downtown Los Angeles development. Overseeing the $200 million, 33-story tower that will open this summer 2015 in the city's South Park District, Mr. Cepeda keeps a keen eye on industry trends and business news to maintain a strong presence in today's competitive landscape. A proven leader with extensive hospitality experience, Mr. Cepeda leads his teams by setting clear expectations, realistic goals, capitalizing on growing market trends and establishing lasting business relationships. A seasoned veteran of the hospitality industry, Mr. Cepeda brings more than 15 years of relevant management, guest services, sales and communications experience to his current position. He previously worked in the operations department at both Four Seasons Resort Punta Mita and Four Seasons Resort Whistler before joining the LEVEL Furnished Living team in 2010. Since joining the LEVEL Furnished Living team, Mr. Cepeda has been an integral part of spearheading the opening of their flagship property in Vancouver, Canada and now looks forward to leading the Downtown Los Angeles property to similar success. Colombian born and raised, Mr. Cepeda has also lived in Dominican Republic, Mexico and Canada. He holds a Bachelor of Tourism and Hotel Management from Universidad Externado de Colombia. In 2010, he served as operations supervisor for the Vancouver Organizing Committee for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, the non-profit organization responsible for planning, organizing, financing and staging the Games in Whistler, Canada. He is a 2015 recipient of the Tower of Excellence Award for Individual of the Year from the Corporate Housing Providers Association (CHPA). http://www.stayinglevel.com/los-angeles

Please visit http://www.stayinglevel.com for more information.

Mr. Cepeda can be contacted at 213-873-8400 or dtla@stayinglevel.com

Coming up in February 2019...

Social Media: Getting Personal

There Social media platforms have revolutionized the hotel industry. Popular sites such as Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, YouTube and Tumblr now account for 2.3 billion active users, and this phenomenon has forever transformed how businesses interact with consumers. Given that social media allows for two-way communication between businesses and consumers, the emphasis of any marketing strategy must be to positively and personally engage the customer, and there are innumerable ways to accomplish that goal. One popular strategy is to encourage hotel guests to create their own personal content - typically videos and photos -which can be shared via their personal social media networks, reaching a sizeable audience. In addition, geo-locational tags and brand hashtags can be embedded in such posts which allow them to be found via metadata searches, substantially enlarging their scope. Influencer marketing is another prevalent social media strategy. Some hotels are paying popular social media stars and bloggers to endorse their brand on social media platforms. These kinds of endorsements generally elicit a strong response because the influencers are perceived as being trustworthy by their followers, and because an influencer's followers are likely to share similar psychographic and demographic traits. Travel review sites have also become vitally important in reputation management. Travelers consistently use social media to express pleasure or frustration about their guest experiences, so it is essential that every review be attended to personally. Assuming the responsibility to address and correct customer service concerns quickly is a way to mitigate complaints and to build brand loyalty. Plus, whether reviews are favorable or unfavorable, they are a vital source of information to managers about a hotel's operational performance.  The February Hotel Business Review will document what some hotels are doing to effectively incorporate social media strategies into their businesses.