Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Berry

Joy Berry

Co-Founder, The Camp at Carmel Valley

Joy Berry has a broad range of experience in the hospitality industry, including operations, buying, selling, and developing hotels, resorts, spas, residential, fractional units, and casinos.

Ms. Berry has owned and operated her own hotels, bought and sold hotels for corporations, negotiated management and franchise hotel agreements, developed a significant portfolio of hotels for Marriott International, and created an award-winning hotel brand and management company.

Most recently Ms. Berry served as the Founder and President of a new hotel platform and brand called Travaasa. The platform was a roll-up of existing resorts; buying six-star, inspirational, irreplaceable pieces of real estate, maintaining four-star bricks and mortar assets, offering six-star memorable experiences, to capture five-star pricing. The operational credo was "experience is the new luxury."

Ms. Berry built a hotel management company from scratch with expertise in operations, marketing, branding, revenue management, and financial reporting. Her creative, yet financial acumen, led to a brand catering to a strong demand of hotel guests yearning for something new, and provided hotel investors an under-supplied asset. Annual revenues of these resorts grew by 50 percent per year under her leadership.

Previously, Ms. Berry was Senior Vice President of Marriott International and headed up Marriott's real estate development division to deploy their capital in strategic markets in the Western US. She created a team that built 40 ground-up hotels for Marriott's corporate portfolio deploying $650 million in equity. In addition to ground-up deals, she negotiated franchise and management contracts producing fee income value. Together, over a period of 12 years, she was responsible for creating 170 new Marriott hotels and several Ritz Carlton mixed-use resorts, including residential units (both fee and fractional), spas, and hotels for Ritz Carlton.

Ms. Berry also has experience in the gaming industry, having won the first casino license in the state of Indiana and developed a riverboat casino operation resulting in a first year EBITDA of $40 million for a project development of $110 million. She has worked in many of the gaming jurisdictions to acquire and develop or reposition casinos for national gaming companies.

Ms. Berry's in depth knowledge of hospitality real estate (resorts, urban/suburban hotels, spas, residential, fractional, and gaming) combined with her operational and branding experience creates a unique perspective to assist other owners and operators to maximize their returns while creating high satisfactory guest touch points for an award-winning asset.

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

Linkedin Profile: https://www.linkedin.com/in/joy-berry-23a1b966/

Ms. Berry can be contacted at +1 949-500-7009 or joy@joyberry.org

Coming up in March 2020...

Human Resources: Confronting a Labor Shortage

With the unemployment rate at its lowest level in decades (3.7%), what has always been a perennial problem for human resource professionals - labor shortage - is now reaching acute levels of concern. It is getting harder to find and recruit qualified applicants. Even finding candidates with the skills to succeed in entry-level positions has become an issue. In addition, employee turnover rates remain extremely high in the hotel industry. As a result of these problems, hotel HR managers are having to rethink their recruitment strategies in order to hire the right talent for the right job. First, hotels have been forced to raise their wages and offer other appealing perks, as a way to attract qualified candidates. Secondly, HR managers are reassessing their interviewing techniques, focusing less on the answers they receive to questions and more on observable behavior. Part of this process includes role-playing during the interview, so that the recruiter can gauge how a candidate works through specific problems and interacts with other team members. Additionally, some HR managers are also creating internal talent pools as a way to address labor shortages. Instead of utilizing department resources to find new hires with specific skills for needed positions, hotels are cultivating talent pools internally and preparing their employees to assume leadership roles whenever the time comes. They are also placing greater emphasis on a company culture that is more performance-based, as a way to curb employee turnover, increase employee satisfaction, and assure higher levels of customer service. Finally, recognizing the importance of employee retention as a way to lessen the impact of a tight labor market, some HR managers are instituting generous reward programs in order to retain their top performers. The March Hotel Business Review will explore what some HR professionals are doing to address these and other issues in their departments.