Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Caliendo

Gino Caliendo

General Manager, Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront

Gino Caliendo has served as the general manager of Hyatt Regency Jacksonville Riverfront, the largest convention hotel between Atlanta and Orlando, since May of 2014. He has more than 33 years of experience in the hotel industry, all with Hyatt hotels and resorts across the U.S., and he most recently served for six years as the general manager at Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort and Spa in San Antonio, Texas. Prior to Hill Country, Mr. Caliendo served as general manager for the Hyatt Regency Miami, Hyatt Regency Coral Gables and Hyatt Regency Deerfield. He also held various other food-and-beverage positions, including opening the resort on Grand Cayman, Grand Hyatt Tampa, Los Angeles and New Orleans. Mr. Caliendo oversees all aspects of hotel operations. As the general manager for the region's largest convention hotel, he works with local convention, tourism and development officials to attract more business to the area. Of special focus for Mr. Caliendo is the hotel's ongoing initiatives to support downtown economic development, positioning the city for future growth. He is also an active supporter of “Hyatt Thrive,” the company's global corporate responsibility initiative, and he has led a number of projects that give back to the local community and residents. Mr. Caliendo grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and studied at Duquesne University. He lives in Jacksonville with his wife of 25 years, Kyla. He enjoys spending time with his family and friends, good conversation, fine wine, excellent food, good books, watching movies, fly-fishing, animals and fantasy football. Please visit http://www.hyatt.com for more information.

Mr. Caliendo can be contacted at 904-588-1234 or gino.caliendo@hyatt.com

Coming up in June 2018...

Sales & Marketing: Opinions Matter

Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors manage a complex mix of strategies to attract and convert customers into guests. Part of their expertise includes an awareness of customer behavior during the reservation process, so they can make sure their hotel is favorably positioned. One such trend is the growing popularity of travel review sites. According to one recent survey, 61% of prospective customers consult online reviews in order to validate information about the hotel before making a purchasing decision. Another survey found that the average hotel customer reads between 6-12 reviews across 4-10 properties before making a final decision on where to stay. Similarly, other studies have shown that consumer reviews are a more trusted source of information for prospective customers than other kinds of marketing messaging. In fact, reviews are often considered to be as influential as price regarding whether a customer decides to complete a purchase or not. Plus, travel sites with the most reviews - including recent reviews from satisfied customers and thoughtful responses from staff - were also found to be the most appealing. So having positive reviews on a travel website is essential and can help to increase a hotel's conversion rates dramatically. Of course, there are all kinds of additional marketing strategies for sales and marketing directors to consider - the importance of video and the emergence of live streaming; the implementation of voice search; the proliferation of travel bots; and the development of Instagram as an e-commerce platform. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.