Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Chouinard

Keith Chouinard

Director of Sales & Marketing, Hotel Viking

As Director of Sales & Marketing for Hotel Viking in Newport, Rhode Island, Keith Chouinard is responsible for the hotel's sales and marketing efforts including promotions, strategic partnerships, and new business development. Mr. Chouinard joined Hotel Viking in December 2015, one month prior to the historic hotel's renovations and six months before the hotel celebrates its 90th anniversary. Since joining the team, Mr. Chouinard has developed strategic partnerships with local sporting events including the Newport International Polo Series; retail outlets such as Marc Allen Clothiers; and welcomed more than 20 online, print and broadcast media guests to the landmark hotel. Mr. Chouinard's career began in high school when he worked as a banquet server at Danversport Yacht Club in Danvers, MA. While attending University of Massachusetts at Amherst, he quickly moved up to banquet manager. After earning his degree in restaurant and travel administration, he joined Hyatt Regency in Lake Tahoe. Mr. Chouinard then served as director of sales with the Vail Cascade Resort & Spa, Boulders Resort & Golden Door Spa, and then headed back East to take the role as Director of Business Development for Ocean Edge Resort & Golf Club in Cape Cod, MA. Prior to joining Hotel Viking, Mr. Chouinard was affiliated with the Hyatt Regency Newport where he significantly increased groups business resulting in a nomination for Director of Sales of the Year for Hyatt Hotels & Resorts nationwide. Mr. Chouinard earned the 2015 Director of Sales of the Year Award from Davidson Hotels & Resorts, the company that owns the Hyatt property in Newport. Mr. Chouinard, who serves on the Board of Discover Newport, brings more than 15 years of experience in hospitality sales to the Hotel Viking team.

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

Mr. Chouinard can be contacted at 401-847-3300 or kchouinard@hotelviking.com

Coming up in December 2020...

Hotel Law: Protecting Guest Privacy

Every business is obligated to protect their customers from identity theft but unfortunately, data breaches have become all too common. In an effort to protect a guest's right to privacy and to safeguard their personal data, the European Union passed a General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that could hold hotels legally liable for any breaches that expose a customer's sensitive personal information. Though the GDPR only pertains to EU citizens' data, any international business that mishandles their data can be legally responsible. Another legal issue of concern is the fight involving hotel "resort fees." Several states attorney generals have recently filed suit against two major hotel chains in an effort to litigate this practice. Their suit alleges that these companies are "engaged in deceptive and misleading pricing practices and their failure to disclose fees is in violation of consumer protection laws." The suit seeks to force the hotel chains to advertise the true price of their hotel rooms. There are several other legal issues that the industry is being forced to address. Sexual harassment prevention in the workplace is still top of mind for hotel employers-particularly in New York and California, which now statutorily require harassment training. Hotels and motels in California will also soon be required to train all their employees on human trafficking awareness. Immigration issues are also of major concern to hotel employers, especially in the midst of a severe labor shortage. The government is issuing fewer H2B visas for low-skilled workers, as well as J-1 visas for temporary workers. Though there is little hope for any comprehensive immigration reform, hotel lobbying groups are actively seeking legal remedies to alleviate this problem. These are just a few of the critical issues that the December issue of the Hotel Business Review will examine in the area of hotel law.