Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Hickel

Gerard Hickel

Attorney, Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, LLC

Gerard J. Hickel is a Member of the Hospitality and Gaming practice at Eckert Seamans Cherin & Mellott, LLC, a national, full-service AmLaw 200 law firm with 15 offices in the U.S., including: Philadelphia, Harrisburg, and Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Boston, Massachusetts; Washington, D.C.; Newark and Princeton, New Jersey; Buffalo and White Plains, New York; Wilmington, Delaware; Richmond, Virginia; Hartford, Connecticut; Troy, Michigan; Providence, Rhode Island; and Charleston, West Virginia.

Mr. Hickel focuses his practice primarily in the areas of hospitality and corporate law. His practice includes the representation of domestic and international hotel and spa management companies, owners, developers, and asset managers in numerous types of corporate transactions, including acquisitions, mergers, and financings.

Mr. Hickel's hospitality practice includes the drafting, review, and negotiation of all types of agreements related to hotel, spa, and restaurant management and operations; the purchase and sale of hotels; the franchising of a hospitality-based property, including the application process; and a wide range of day-to-day hotel-related agreements for numerous hotel management companies and ownership groups, including equipment leases, space leases, antenna license agreements, room accommodation agreements, group sales agreements, advertising agreements, location agreements, commitment agreements, as well as other similar types of agreements.

Mr. Hickel also has many years of experience providing general business counseling advice, regularly guiding clients through the formation and preparation of agreements relating to corporations, partnerships, limited liability companies, and other entities.

Mr. Hickel earned his J.D. from the University of Pittsburgh School of Law, and undergraduate degree from The Pennsylvania State University.

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

Mr. Hickel can be contacted at 412-566-1906 or ghickel@eckertseamans.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.