Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Mahlstedt

Patricia Mahlstedt

Co-Chair Hospitality & Gaming Practice, Eckert Seamans

Tricia Mahlstedt is the Co-Chair of Eckert Seamans' Hospitality & Gaming practice. She focuses her practice on hospitality law, representing hotel owners, developers, investors, and management companies. Ms. Mahlstedt's practice covers various aspects of hotel-related matters for clients whose properties are located throughout the United States as well as in international locations, including hotel acquisitions and sales, joint venture negotiations, financing matters, leases, management agreements, franchise and food and beverage operating agreements, and day-to-day hotel operational matters.

She is responsible for managing Eckert Seamans' role as outside counsel for negotiation of management agreements for multiple independent hotel management company clients, for both U.S. and international operations, as well as on-going legal support for the operations of such clients.

Previously, Ms. Mahlstedt served for six years as an associate general counsel at Interstate Hotels, the nation's largest independent hotel management company. While serving in that capacity, Ms. Mahlstedt's practice covered general corporate transactional matters of the publicly-held company, including mergers and acquisitions as well as hotel operational matters. Specifically, Ms. Mahlstedt had major responsibility in negotiation and administration of hotel management agreements, hotel acquisitions, joint ventures and financing transactions, and securities transaction and reporting matters. Ms. Mahlstedt also has several years of experience practicing general corporate and real estate law outside of the hospitality area, with experience in commercial lending transactions, real estate acquisitions and dispositions, and merger and acquisition transactions.

Ms. Mahlstedt earned her J.D. from the University of Notre Dame Law School and undergraduate degree, with highest honors, from Saint Vincent College.

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

Ms. Mahlstedt can be contacted at 412-566-1914 or pmahlstedt@eckertseamans.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.