Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Houdre

Herve Houdre

Regional Director of Operations & General Manager, Intercontinental New York Barclay

One of Europe and America's most respected hoteliers, Herve Houdre began his tenure as Regional Director of Operations and General Manager of the InterContinental New York Barclay in October of 2009. Prior to this, he held the position of General Manager of the Willard InterContinental Washington D.C. since 2004. Before coming to the United States Mr.Houdre was Chief Operating Officer of Kempinski Hotels & resorts and General Manager of famed Parisian hotels, the Plaza Athenee and the Hotel de Crillon. Mr. Houdre was named "2006 Independent Hotelier of the World" by HOTELS magazine. He serves on the Boards and Executive Committees of the NYC Hotel Association and NYC & Company (Convention & Visitors Bureau) as well as on the Board of GSTC (Global Sustainable Tourism Council). A leader in Sustainable Hospitality. Mr. Houdre published Sustainable Hospitality©, a white paper utilized by Cornell University's Center for Hospitality Research. He has co-edited a book named Hotel Sustainable Development: Principles and Best Practices, published in 2011 by American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute, together with Prof AJ Singh from Michigan State University. Mr. Houdre recently joined the Environment and Engineering Committee of AH&LA (American Hotel & Lodging Association). Mr. Houdre's efforts have been highlighted in a broad array of media in the US and abroad. His leadership achieved the 2009 Conde Nast Traveler World Savers Award, 2009 DC Mayor's Award for Environmental Excellence and DC Chamber of Commerce 2009 Business of the Year. He received the New York chapter Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International 2012 General Manager of the year award.

Mr. Houdre can be contacted at 212-906-3100 or herve.houdre@ihg.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.