Editorial Board   

Mr. Guaracino

Jeff Guaracino

Vice President, Communications, Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corp

Jeff Guaracino is vice president of communications for the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation (GPTMC), a position he assumed in 2006. In his role, Guaracino manages national and regional communications, the visiting journalist program, content development and corporate communications. He specializes in communications programs to African-American, Hispanic, Canadian and gay and lesbian travelers. The Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation (GPTMC) makes Philadelphia and The Countryside(R) a premier destination through marketing and image building that increases business and promotes the region's vitality. Guaracino joined GPTMC in 2001 as director of communications. He is part of the team at GPTMC that created the internationally recognized gay tourism campaign, Philadelphia - Get Your History Straight and Your Nightlife Gay(R). This ground-breaking campaign has won GPTMC top awards in the travel, public relations and advertising industries. Elseiver, an international book publisher, invited Guaracino to write the first book on gay tourism marketing called Gay and Lesbian Tourism: The Essential Guide for Marketers, which was released in 2007. Active in the community, Guaracino was appointed by Philadelphia Mayor John F. Street to serve on the Mayor's Commission on Children. He also serves as vice president of the Philadelphia Gay Tourism Caucus, an organization he co-founded in 2002. His public service has been recognized by the American Heart Association with the "Rookie of the Year Award" and by the AIDS Coalition of Southern New Jersey with the "President's Award." In 2003, the Philadelphia Public Relations Association recognized his work with the "PPRA Fast Track Award," and Philadelphia Magazine named Guaracino one of 22 people to watch. A Philadelphia region native, Guaracino was raised in New Jersey and currently resides in the Old City section of Philadelphia. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in communications from Rowan University in Glassboro, New Jersey.

Mr. Guaracino can be contacted at 215-599-2290 or jeff@gptmc.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.