Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Gelfand

James Gelfand

Director of Sales & Marketing, Turnberry Isle Miami

James Gelfand is Director of Sales & Marketing for Turnberry Isle Miami, with over 30 years of industry experience; he is responsible for overseeing the strategic direction of sales for the 408-room resort. As Director of Sales & Marketing he is involved in developing new business opportunities and working directly with all revenue generating departments. He has been instrumental in driving innovative programming and tasked with upholding and enhancing the property's longstanding legacy in southern Florida. Prior to assuming his new role with Turnberry Isle Miami, Mr. Gelfand held the Director of Sales & Marketing position at The Westin Copley Place, where he was influential in the property's transition to becoming part of Starwood Hotels of Boston's Metro Market Sales Force. He guided and directed revenue management and hotel performance at the property to achieve a dramatic increase in sales and stable revenue growth. Mr. Gelfand's 11-year career with Starwood Resorts and Hotels also includes serving as Director of Sales at both The Westin Diplomat Resort and Spa in Hollywood, Fla., and The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort in Orlando, Fla. He also served as Vice President of Sales, Marketing and Revenue Development at the prestigious PGA National Resort & Spa. During his time at the resort he was the key architect in rebranding and reintroducing the resort to both local and national markets through integrated marketing and advertising initiatives. Mr. Gelfand assisted with creating new sales deployment territories and enhanced sales across multiple facets of the resort. Mr. Gelfand graduated from Georgia State University with a degree in Hotel/Restaurant and Travel Management.

Mr. Gelfand can be contacted at 786-279-6521 or jgelfand@turnberryislemiami.com

Coming up in January 2019...

Mobile Technology: The Future is Now

Mobile Technology continues to advance at a relentless pace and the hotel industry continues to adapt. Hotel guests have shown a strong preference for mobile self-service - from checking-in/out at a hotel kiosk, to ordering room service, making dinner reservations, booking spa treatments, and managing laundry/dry cleaning services. And they also enjoy the convenience of paying for these services with smart phone mobile payments. In addition, some hotels have adopted a “concierge in your pocket” concept. Through a proprietary hotel app, guests can access useful information such as local entertainment venues, tourist attractions, event calendars, and medical facilities and services. In-room entertainment continues to be a key factor, as guests insist on the capacity to plug in their own mobile devices to customize their entertainment choices. Mobile technology also allows for greater marketing opportunities. For example, many hotels have adopted the use of “push notifications” - sending promotions, discounts and special event messages to guests based on their property location, purchase history, profiles, etc. Near field communication (NFC) technology is also being utilized to support applications such as opening room doors, earning loyalty points, renting a bike, accessing a rental car, and more. Finally, some hotels have adopted more futuristic technology. Robots are in use that have the ability to move between floors to deliver room service requests for all kinds of items - food, beverages, towels, toothbrushes, chargers and snacks. And infrared scanners are being used by housekeeping staff that can detect body heat within a room, alerting staff that the room is occupied and they should come back at a later time. The January Hotel Business Review will report on what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in this exciting mobile technology space.