Library Archives

 
Peter Anderson

Not only is payroll the largest single expense item on your profit and loss statement, but it's important to remember that spa clients generally only interface with line employees, such as their massage therapist or esthetician. If professionalism is not engrained into the fabric of your corporate culture and your employees are not truly enthusiastic about your operation, you may be setting yourself up for problems. READ MORE

Dawn Walzak

Tourism executives are being put to the test to anticipate guests needs before their competitors. A hotel room is truly becoming a home away from home and a refuge for travelers regardless of the purpose of their hotel stay. Guest's expectations for a stress-free hassle-free visit are increasing. Which begs the question: What is being done to afford comfortable guest experiences? READ MORE

Al Ferrone

One thing we know for sure is that diet fads will come and go, but people will always have a desire to eat healthy. When the Atkins diet was introduced, everyone jumped on the bandwagon. Hilton Hotels Corporation did not. In addition, many manufacturers rushed to produce low-carb products. I've sampled some low-carb breads that were tasteless and so hard that I doubt a beaver could gnaw or digest it. I thought, "Who in the world would want to endure that kind of an assault on the taste buds and digestive system?" I'm sure that eating a loaf of this bread would cause anyone to develop jaw muscles that pit bulls would envy. READ MORE

Sandy Heydt

How many of us hotel marketing directors dread the time of year when marketing plans are due? So much work! And for what purpose? When completed, most marketing plans only get placed in a tabbed binder, while the Owner, Management Company and General Manager may or may not even glance at it. Then it goes on a shelf and collects dust. First things first: everyone along the food chain needs to take responsibility for marketing plans that are not meaningful. Sometimes Management Company executives or General Managers just want a plan to look good...i.e. big and thick with lots of graphs. Marketing directors just want to get it done and move on to the next project - like actually selling rooms or putting out the first fire of the day. I can remember that when I was on property I dreaded marketing plan time because I had so many other things to do, and I was also a tad resentful because I knew the plan would really never be read carefully by anyone else. READ MORE

Susie Ross

There are so many things you want to know about a person when you interview them, the most important being their work ethic. There are ways to find that out with proper questions and review of a resume. You want to set the stage from the beginning that you operate a professional business. It isn't just a caf'e, diner, restaurant or deli. It's your business and, if you want to take an aggressive approach, ask questions of your applicant that will reveal personality and the salesperson in her. This is assuming you want a personality that wants to sell and not take orders. READ MORE

Peggy Borgman

Measuring employee productivity in the "stay" spa differs significantly from doing the same in the day spa environment. Day spas look hard at statistics such as client retention and retail ratios. Hotel spa employees work with a transient guest, who is, according to popular wisdom, less likely to return and less likely to buy. Or are they? Not all "stay" spas are the same. Understanding typical guest behavior can enable you to create realistic measurements of guest retention by spa employees. READ MORE

Steve Kiesner

You know that getting more value from your energy dollar is always important. This winter it will be imperative. According to the latest Short Term Energy Outlook from the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the price of natural gas, heating oil and propane will all be higher this winter. The EIA predicts natural gas prices, for example, to rise by 50 percent, on average, compared with last year. Even if your company has locked in lower prices through long-term fuel contracts, you still should be making sure you are doing everything you can to get the most value from your energy dollar. The lodging industry spends over $5.5 billion per year on energy. That is a lot room for potential savings. And greater profitability. READ MORE

Arthur Weissman

Almost every property is a part of the community around it. As such, it affects the community's economic condition in some way. In this article, we explore the ways in which a sustainable lodging property can positively affect the community's economic vitality. We will discuss this from the following perspectives: the property's environmental footprint; the property's effect on the health of its workers; the property as community leader or model; the property as educator; the property as donor; and the property as a magnet for business. READ MORE

Peter Anderson

Today in most resorts the inclusion of a spa is no longer a luxury, but rather a standard amenity, expected and ubiquitous. Significant cross pollinating among the day, medical, amenity, and destination spas has created a competitive and comprehensive spa environment that here-to-fore that has never been experienced. This dynamic has created the phenomenon of Spa Wars, where product differentiation is subtle and the competitive edge can be paper thin. It is ironic that as the spa industry matures, distinctions between spa types are becoming blurred, resulting in subtle levels of segmentation and product differentiation that provide "options" to the savvy spa goer and "confusion" to the rest of us. Historically, hotel and resort spas have been classified as either "destination" or "amenity", meaning they were either the specific reason to travel to a remote location or they were and an added amenity (sometimes created as an after thought) for the an indulgent resort clientele. READ MORE

John Tess

Federal tax law allows a 10% investment tax credit for the rehabilitation of a non-historic building placed in service before 1936. To be "non-historic" a building cannot be individually listed on the National Register. A building located within a National Register historic district is presumed to be historic; to use the 10% tax credit, the Park Service must determine that the building in question is not historic. READ MORE

Lynn McCullough

It is important for meeting planners to be aware of the many ways they can plan for and conduct highly effective, memorable meetings, while simultaneously taking their organization's budgetary parameters into consideration. Now is the ideal time-especially as we embark on a new year-to start a clean slate comprised of cost-savings strategies and planning decisions that ensure both financial benefits for your client's organization while also generating a successful meeting for their audience. So, if you or your client need to plan big with a budget that's small, let the following tips from ACOM-the Association for Convention Operations Management-serve as a helpful guide to achieve both objectives. READ MORE

Doug Luciani

In the hospitality industry, there are numerous ways to work with the media. You can send out news releases to alert the media to new amenities or packages. You can host travel writers who will then include you in their stories. If your releases and hosting go well, writers may then follow up with you for an interview. This may all sound easy to deal with. But, take it from someone who has been a journalist and now works with them daily, the media can be finicky. Let's start with sending your news to journalists. READ MORE

Darrell Schuurman

By now, since reading my last article, you've already started to take the first step in the product development phase: providing diversity training to your staff. With this training, you have the basics you need to offer the gay and lesbian traveller an experience where they can feel comfortable and the service they receive meets their expectations. But how do you build on that? How do you enhance that to really make your property appeal to, and capture, the market? Product development and packaging is where you get to be creative and have fun. Through the development of new products that are created specifically for the gay and lesbian market, you can provide them with the tailored experience that they are looking for. You might be thinking to yourself that you don't have any "gay" product to work with; that you have nothing that would be appealing for a gay and lesbian package. Where do you look? READ MORE

Jeff Slye

We all know that when it comes to setting the style standards for hospitality, boutique hotels are among the industry's most formidable trendsetters. Often, Kimpton Hotels have led the pack with innovative design and unique programs such as in-room yoga, tall rooms, and goldfish to keep the guest company. In 2005, they decided to make one statement that will never go out of style - green is the new black. READ MORE

Doug Luciani

As a public relations professional, one thing is very clear to me. Most people do not fully understand or appreciate the benefits of PR to their business. PR is perhaps the most under utilized tool in a marketing tool box. Public relations takes time and commitment. Sending out one release won't get you on the cover of Southern Living or the front page of the NY Times. However, handle a crisis poorly and it will. Understanding public relations is important to any business. Effective PR can help you gain exposure and increase revenues. Sure, PR can be maddening. It's hard to measure the ROI sometimes, but it can be done. It's time consuming, but the results are very gratifying. READ MORE

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