Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Carlen

Jill Carlen

Global Director of Spa Brands, Hilton Hotels & Resorts

Jill Carlen is the Global Director of Spa Brands at Hilton Hotels and Resorts overseeing the spa concepts and strategies for all Hilton brands including Hilton, Embassy Suites, Doubletree, Conrad, Tapestry, the iconic Waldorf Astoria and the newest hotel brand, Signia Hilton.

Having spent almost two decades in the Spa and Hospitality industry, Ms. Carlen now applies her operations experience with her creativity and passion for wellness to provide hotel guests with the most innovative and exceptional experiences.

As an exchange student in high school, Ms. Carlen lived near a lavender farm in France. It was during this time where she learned about the healing properties of lavender, marking the beginning of a lifelong passion for wellness. Ms. Carlen would move to New York City later in life, where her love of everything spa led her to work in some the city's most renowned Spas including Exhale, Bliss, The St. Regis New York and The Deepak Chopra Center. In addition, she launched multiple spas and wellness facilities while working at the prestigious consulting firm Lexi Design.

Ms. Carlen then went on to run The Ritz-Carlton, Toronto, winning Travel + Leisure's World's Best Hotel Spa Award. Ms. Carlen then took her years of experience in operations to her next adventure of launching L'OCCITANE spas all over North America in luxury hotels. She has been a frequent contributor to multiple publications including Elle Canada on line, Preferred Magazine, Sharp magazine and several beauty and wellness blogs.

Ms. Carlen holds a BFA from Florida State University and is a board member of the International Spa Association.

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

Ms. Carlen can be contacted at +1 703-883-6992 or jill.carlen@hilton.com

Coming up in August 2020...

Food & Beverage: New Technological Innovations

In the past few years, hotel food and beverage departments have experienced significant growth. Managers are realizing just how much revenue potential this sector holds, both in terms of additional revenue and as a means to enhance the guest experience. As a result, substantial investments are being made in F&B operations as a way to satisfy hotel guests but also to keep pace with the competition. Though it has been a trend for many years, the Farm-to-Table movement shows no signs of abating. Hotel chains are abandoning corporate restaurants and are instead partnering with local chefs to create locally-influenced dining options. Local, farm-sourced ingredients paired with specialty beverages or local wine also satisfies the increasing demand from Millennial travelers who are eager to travel sustainably and contribute to a positive impact. A farm-to-table F&B program also helps to support the local economy, which builds community goodwill. Also popular are "Self-Serv" and "Grab & Go" options. These concepts stem from an awareness that a guest's time is limited and if a hotel can supply them with fast, fresh, food and beverage choices, then so much the better for them. Plus, by placing these specialty kiosks in areas that might be traditionally under-utilized (the lobby, for instance), they can become popular destination locations. Of course, there are new technological innovations as well. In-room, on-screen menus allow guests to order from any restaurant on the property, and some hotels are partnering with delivery companies that make it possible for guests to order food from any restaurant in the area. Also, many hotels are implementing in-room, voice-activated devices, so ordering food via an AI-powered assistant will soon become mainstream as well. The August issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these developments and document what some leading hotels are doing to expand this area of their business.