Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Bedner

Michael Bedner

Chairman & CEO, Hirsch Bedner Associates

As Chairman and CEO of Hirsch Bedner Associates, Michael Bedner leads the largest, hospitality design firm in the world. In 1964, Mr. Bedner and his partner, Howard Hirsch, revolutionized hospitality design by creating a totally new professional discipline. Throughout his career, Mr. Bedner has expanded the discipline into a functional art form that continues to evolve. His vision and creative energy provide inspiration to the entire industry and his design influence can be seen in hundreds of the finest hotels throughout the world. Mr. Bedner's combination of traditional training and over 40 years of international hands-on experience have provided him with a singular understanding of the cultural, programmatic and financial aspects of a variety of projects. This understanding makes him uniquely qualified as a consultant for virtually every aspect of the hospitality business, from conceptual planning to budgeting and installation. Beyond directing twelve offices worldwide with a staff of over 450 professionals, Mr. Bedner has continued to create his own innovative, distinctive designs. Throughout his career, Michael Bedner has remained committed to the three principles on which he and Howard Hirsch based the business: to have fun, learn and grow from every experience and to produce the best design possible for each project.

Mr. Bedner can be contacted at 310-829-9087 or MichaelB@HBAdesign.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.