Editorial Board   

Ms. Bulls Dixon

Gayle Bulls Dixon

Owner/Founder, Breathe Spa Management Company

As a former Fortune 100 executive, leadership consultant and entrepreneur, Gayle Bulls Dixon's business acumen and wellness philosophy find an uncommon melding in the Breathe Spa concept, which she created in 2002. Already a partner in Dixon Entities, which owns and manages real estate investments including the Daufuskie Island Resort & Breathe Spa off the coast of Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, Ms. Dixon was perplexed to find a lack of qualified spa management companies that satisfied her requirements for service, partnership, vision and profitability. Shortly after opening the Breathe Spa at the exclusive Daufuskie Island Resort, Ms. Dixon began receiving requests for spa management assistance from other resort owners. "It became apparent that there was significant interest in the Breathe Spa concept, as well as in a spa management company that focused on both impeccable service and profitability," she says. "I created Breathe Spa Management Company (BSMC), which is a full-service destination spa and spa management company because the market led me to do so. It is successful because I have both the financial and management background to lead the team that I have assembled, consisting of great leaders with direct experience managing upscale spas." Ms. Dixon's professional background includes executive level positions in the U.S., London and Venezuela with international corporations like AT&T, IBM and Qwest. She also founded Learning, Inc., a consulting firm specializing in leadership and corporate reorganizations, in 1996. In addition to the executive roles in BSMC and Dixon Entities, Ms. Dixon presents to and is involved with business and women's organizations, and she recently spoke at the 2004 China-U.S. Women's Leadership Conference in China. She is anticipating the release of her first book in 2005, which examines how women business leaders can best focus their feminine strengths to their advantage in a male-dominated business climate. She also has a television pilot in the works which explores various aspects of increased spirituality. Ms. Dixon received a bachelor's degree in management from California Coast University; a mini-MBA from Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, and is a graduate of the Entrepreneur's Program of Southern Methodist University in Dallas. She resides with her husband Bill in the San Francisco Bay area.

Ms. Bulls Dixon can be contacted at 415-789-5224 or gayledixon@dixonentities.com

Coming up in September 2020...

Hotel Group Meetings: Demand vs. Supply

It is a great time for hotel group meetings. It is expected that once again this sector will grow by 5-10% in 2020, partly due to the increasing value of in-person group meetings. Because people now spend so much time in front of their screens, face-to-face interactions have become a more treasured commodity in our modern world. Plus, the use of social media reinforces the value of engagement, discussion, conversation, and networking - all areas where group meetings shine. Despite this rosy outlook, there is a concern that demand for meetings far exceeds the supply of suitable venues and hotels. There are very few "big box" properties with 500-plus rooms and extensive conference facilities being built, and this shortage of inventory could pose a serious challenge for meeting planners. In addition to location concerns, the role of the meeting planner has also evolved significantly. Planners are no longer just meeting coordinators - they are de facto travel agents. Cultural interactions, local dining, experiential travel, and team-building activities are all now a part of their meeting mix. Plus, they have to cater to evolving tastes. Millennials are insisting on healthier venues and activities, and to meet their demands, hotels are making yoga breaks, fresh-pressed juices, plant-based diets, state-of-the-art gyms, and locally-sourced menus available. Millennials are also insisting that meeting venues practice Corporate Social Responsibility, which means upholding sustainable and ethical values; investment in the local community; health and well-being of employees; and general business practices that reflect being good citizens of the planet. Finally, there is a growing trend to merge meetings with other local events, such as music festivals, sporting events, and cultural attractions. The December Hotel Business Review will report on issues relevant to group meetings and will document what some hotels are doing to support this part of their operations.