Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Spitzer

Craig Spitzer

General Manager, Durham Hotel

Craig Spitzer is currently the General Manager for The Durham Hotel in Durham, North Carolina. There, Mr. Spitzer oversees all aspects of property management that make The Durham Hotel a dynamic destination. He played a vital role in opening the hotel in July 2015, collaborating in the design of the overall guest experience, selection of technology systems and team recruitment.

Mr. Spitzer's hospitality career began in 1998 in New York City at the Hotel Elysee where he managed the front desk and bell staff at the 99-room historic hotel. In 2000, he was installed as the opening general manager at The Library Hotel, a 60-room luxury boutique hotel in Midtown Manhattan. He spent six years guiding the Library to success and helped earn it a place on Conde Nast Traveler's Hot List in 2001.

In 2006, Mr. Spitzer moved south joining Empire Properties in Raleigh, North Carolina as Director of Hospitality, overseeing both operations and development of its restaurant portfolio as well as exploring the development of boutique hotels throughout North Carolina. During his tenure he created Empire Eats, the restaurant brand under the Empire Properties umbrella. He was also instrumental in the conceptualization and development of The Pit, a nationally recognized upscale barbecue restaurant that replaced an underperforming restaurant previously in the Empire portfolio.

In 2007, Mr. Spitzer received the Horizon Award from the Greater Raleigh Convention and Visitors Bureau “In Recognition of Exemplary Top Leadership within the Wake County Hospitality Industry.” Subsequently, Mr. Spitzer joined Summit Hospitality Group as the Regional Operations Manager and later become General Manager of one of its properties - The Dunhill Hotel in Raleigh, North Carolina.

In 2013 Mr. Spitzer founded his own hospitality company called Transcendent Hospitality. Transcendent Hospitality, LLC is a premier provider of third party hotel management services, focusing on independent, upscale, full-service and luxury boutique properties throughout the southeastern United States. Leveraging the significant experience of its principals, the firm focuses on providing value-added services to its clients.

Mr. Spitzer received his Bachelor of Arts from University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Please visit www.thedurham.com for more information.

Mr. Spitzer can be contacted at 919-768-8830 or cspitzer@thedurham.com

Coming up in December 2019...

Hotel Law: A Labor Crisis and Cyber Security

According to a recent study, the hospitality industry accounted for 2.9 trillion dollars in sales and in the U.S. alone, was responsible for 1 in 9 jobs. In an industry of that scope and dimension, legal issues touch every aspect of a hotel's operation, and legal services are required in order to conform to all prevailing laws and regulations. Though not all hotels face the same issues, there are some industry-wide subjects that are of concern more broadly. One of those matters is the issue of immigration and how it affects the ability of hotels to recruit qualified employees. The hotel industry is currently facing a labor crisis; the U.S. Labor Department estimates that there are 600,000 unfilled jobs in the industry. Part of the problem contributing to this labor shortage is the lack of H2B visas for low-skilled workers, combined with the difficulty in obtaining J-1 visas for temporary workers. Because comprehensive immigration reform is not being addressed politically, hotel managers expect things are going to get worse before they get better. Corporate cyber security is another major legal issue the industry must address. Hotels are under enormous pressure in this area given the large volume of customer financial transactions they handle daily. Recently, a federal court ruled that the Federal Trade Commission had the power to regulate corporate cyber security, so it is incumbent on hotels to establish data security programs in order to prevent data breaches. The lack of such programs could cause hotels to face legal threats from government agencies, class action lawsuits, and damage to their brand image if a data breach should occur. These are just two of the critical issues that the December issue of Hotel Business Review will examine in the area of hotel law.