Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Galusha

Shannon Galusha

Culinary Director, Columbia Hospitality

Shannon Galusha, Culinary Director of Columbia Hospitality leads the way in directing and mentoring the culinary teams at Columbia's award-winning boutique hotels, conference centers and distinctive venues. From the iconic Salish Lodge & Spa in Snoqualmie, Washington to the Rainbow Ranch Lodge on the Gallatin River in Big Sky, Montana, and the Kenwood Inn and Spa in Kenwood, California, Mr. Galusha incorporates his invaluable 14 years of expertise into the unique branding of each property. Mr. Galusha's impressive background includes work with The French Laundry in California's Napa Valley, Rue Balzac in Paris, as well as Campagne in Seattle. He delighted the Seattle culinary community with his work as chef/owner at Veil in Seattle's Queen Anne neighborhood. Mr. Galusha formerly managed the direction of the highly acclaimed Bastille Restaurant in Ballard, as well as its Mexican offspring, Poquitos on Capitol Hill. Most recently, Mr. Galusha was the culinary director of Classic Concept Group, where he launched unique dining concepts including Cal's Classic American Kitchen in Seattle's booming South Lake Union neighborhood. Born and raised in the Seattle area, Mr. Galusha currently resides in Snoqualmie, Washington with his wife and two children. Whenever not in the kitchen, Mr. Galusha can be found exploring the Northwest and spending time with his family.

Mr. Galusha can be contacted at 206-239-1800 or info@columbiahospitality.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.