Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Villalon

Joel Villalon

President, Brayton Hughes

As a child, Joel Villalon discovered beauty during each of the many summer vacations he took with his parents and siblings. Whether he was hiking in the painted Grand Canyon or driving through the magnificent Centro Historico of Mexico City, his fascination with travel and the differences he noticed in space, light and architecture in different parts of the world began to take form. He still retains this sense of wonder and observation and brings that focused eye and attention to detail in each of his projects. After receiving his degree in Architecture from the University of Texas at Austin, Mr. Villalon honed his skills with Larry Speck in Austin, Rafael Vinoly Architects in New York City, and SOMA in San Francisco before he ultimately joined BraytonHughes in 1992. Since joining the firm, Mr. Villalon's hand is evident in his team's designs for the Alpine Club in Stowe, Vermont, the Fairmont in Nanjing, China, and the Overlake Golf and Country Clubhouse in Medina, Washington. He also designed several of Discovery Land's golf clubhouses: Kukio Golf Club on Hawaii's Big Island, Mirabel Golf Clubhouse in Scottsdale, Arizona, El Dorado Golf and Beach Club in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico, and the Madison Club in La Quinta, California. He is currently working on various projects for the Yellowstone Club in Big Sky, Montana, the renovation of Ventana Inn in Big Sur, California, the Grand Hyatt SFO in San Francisco, California, the Montage SilverRock in La Quinta, California, and the Montage Spanish Peaks Lodge in Big Sky, Montana. Mr. Villalon's projects have been recognized for design excellence by the AIA receiving local, regional, and national AIA Honor Awards for his work.

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

Mr. Villalon can be contacted at 415-291-8100 or jvillalon@bhdstudios.com

Coming up in January 2020...

Mobile Technology: Meeting Tech Expectations

What once seemed futuristic is now the norm, owing to the escalating developments in mobile technology, and hotels must continue to innovate in order to meet guest expectations. In a recent study from Mower, 65 percent of guests said they would gladly pay more for a hotel that provides the mobile technology they deem essential. The same study shows that 44 percent of travelers are more likely to book a smart hotel, and nearly 7 in 10 want to use smart devices provided by the hotel. And how do guests wish to use all this technology? A majority expressed a desire for mobile check-in and check-out, and mobile payment options. They also want to be able to stream content from their phone to the TV; to make service requests of the hotel staff; to control in-room lighting, temperature and sound; to order food and beverages; and to request a wake-up call - all from their mobile device. Guests also expressed preferences for robust wi-fi and convenient device charging ports throughout the hotel. They also appreciate the use of hotel branded apps which allow a guest to book a room, access loyalty programs, receive discounts and rewards, and even use the app to choose the room, floor and view they prefer. Some hotel apps also allow a customer to track their charges throughout their stay, rather than waiting to receive a bill at the end. Finally, mobile tech lounges are popping up more frequently in some hotels. These lounges offer guests the opportunity to perform tasks like airline check-ins or access to local info guides, but they also provide a place where guests can comfortably get some work done outside their room. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to meet their customers' expectations in the mobile technology space.