Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Edwards

Ken Edwards

Owner and CEO, HMBookstore and Tristar Hotel Group

Ken Edwards is the Owner and CEO of HMBookstore.com and Tristar Hotel Group, where he leads strategic vision and directly oversees core business functions to ensure positive corporate performance. With over 25 years in the hotel industry developing, acquiring and providing management to properties throughout the U.S., Mr. Edwards has turned his decades of experience into innovative business initiatives leading to products and services for the hospitality industry. He speaks nationally on topics of expertise, including revenue management, cash management, multi-property management, sales and marketing, and food and beverage. While owning and operating properties, and providing training to hotel employees, Mr. Edwards recognized an unfulfilled need for effective employee training solutions in all areas of hospitality and hotel operations, for enhancing employee retention, managing costs, increasing revenue, and better customer service. As a result, he founded HMBookstore, an online Learning Management System (LMS) platform used worldwide that provides over 150 online educational training courses for hotel owners and operators, individuals pursuing a career in the hospitality industry, as well hospitality industry professionals looking to enhance their skills. Mr. Edwards received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Hotel Management from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas; a nationally recognized hospitality university. His is also a graduate from the Culinary Institute of America, continuing education in the Food and Beverage field. Throughout his career, Mr. Edwards has owned 18 hotels and has been honored with Hotel of the Year by Radisson McDowell. He is a past Board of Director for IHG Hotel Owners, and has served on IHG Brand Committees as Direct Sales Committee-Chairman, Holiday Inn Committee and IHG Frequent Travel Committee-Priority Club.

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

Mr. Edwards can be contacted at 602-453-9901 or keunlv@aol.com

Coming up in January 2019...

Mobile Technology: The Future is Now

Mobile Technology continues to advance at a relentless pace and the hotel industry continues to adapt. Hotel guests have shown a strong preference for mobile self-service - from checking-in/out at a hotel kiosk, to ordering room service, making dinner reservations, booking spa treatments, and managing laundry/dry cleaning services. And they also enjoy the convenience of paying for these services with smart phone mobile payments. In addition, some hotels have adopted a “concierge in your pocket” concept. Through a proprietary hotel app, guests can access useful information such as local entertainment venues, tourist attractions, event calendars, and medical facilities and services. In-room entertainment continues to be a key factor, as guests insist on the capacity to plug in their own mobile devices to customize their entertainment choices. Mobile technology also allows for greater marketing opportunities. For example, many hotels have adopted the use of “push notifications” - sending promotions, discounts and special event messages to guests based on their property location, purchase history, profiles, etc. Near field communication (NFC) technology is also being utilized to support applications such as opening room doors, earning loyalty points, renting a bike, accessing a rental car, and more. Finally, some hotels have adopted more futuristic technology. Robots are in use that have the ability to move between floors to deliver room service requests for all kinds of items - food, beverages, towels, toothbrushes, chargers and snacks. And infrared scanners are being used by housekeeping staff that can detect body heat within a room, alerting staff that the room is occupied and they should come back at a later time. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in this exciting mobile technology space.