Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Richards

Kevin Richards

Chief Operating Officer, Legacy Ventures

Kevin Richards joined Legacy in 2011 to launch the firm's hotel management division. Mr. Richards oversees all managed hotel assets and is a central player in the company's hospitality development work.

Mr. Richards has over 30 years of experience in the hospitality industry, which began in earnest with hotel general manager roles early in his career with Winegardner & Hammons and Prime Hospitality.

Prior to joining Legacy, he served as vice president of Asset Management with Lodgian, Inc., an owner and operator of over 100 hotels in 34 states, where he contributed to capital planning and investment strategies, implementation of property improvement plans, brand conversions, and renovations for the Lodgian portfolio.

Founded in 1996, Legacy Ventures began as a real estate development company specializing in hotels, resorts and restaurants. Projects range in size from $10 million to $100 million and often involve complex financial structures or public-private collaborations.

Legacy Ventures has an in-house design and construction team that includes architects, interior designers, engineers, and general contractors. In 2012, Legacy Ventures formed its hospitality division to manage or asset manage hotels. Today it manages seven dynamic full-service properties representing 1,500+ guest rooms with annual revenues exceeding $85 million.

In addition, Legacy Venture's restaurant division created and operates six distinctive branded restaurants and leases an additional four. Legacy Ventures responds thoughtfully to the built environment as a cohesive team of planners, developers, hoteliers and restaurateurs. Legacy Ventures innovates with a multi-disciplined approach to create timeless places - delivering exceptional customer experiences through an engaged and passionate team, yielding measurably better results for partners and investors. Legacy Ventures' promise is: “Thoughtfully Enhancing The Built Environment.™

Mr. Richards is a graduate of West Virginia University with a Bachelor of Science degree from the School of Business and Economics.

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

Mr. Richards can be contacted at 404-801-3260 or krichards@lvmgt.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.