Editorial Board   

Mr. Aurand

Douglas Aurand

President, Douglas Aurand & Associates

Douglas Aurand has had his own multimedia business for 10 years. He produces virtual tours in the two largest markets for Full 360x360 Interactive Images; real estate and hospitality. As digital and virtual tour photographer, Mr. Aurand has photographed thousands of homes for sale and created almost as many real estate virtual tours, posting them to websites such as Realtor.com and ColdwellBanker.com, among others. Drawing on his own experience as a Realtor, he provides added-value tools to his real estate customers that sell the homes they're marketing faster and help them generate more customers, both home buyers and home sellers. A running theme is "Not to keep their Virtual Tour a Secret." In the last five years Mr. Aurand has begun tapping his experience in property level hotel management to expand into the hospitality & tourism market. He shows his hotel customers how to get more value out of their web sites with multimedia like virtual tours and streaming video. His website, VirtualAlbuquerque.com, is not just a multimedia tour of his home town, but also a demonstration tool showing different ways to use Virtual Tours and its a showcase for unique products like his virtual golf course tours and virtual ski area tours. Mr. Aurand has produced virtual tours for Sheraton, Hilton, Marriott, Radisson, Wyndham, Residence Inn and several independent hotels along with various B&Bs.

Mr. Aurand can be contacted at (505) 857-2265 or DAurandAssoc@aol.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.