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Robert Post

Knowland CEO Robert Post responds to recent articles/opinions that the $50 million investment by Marriott, IHG, Accor, and Hilton in a new Group Booking Platform has signaled "meaningful change" in the painful process of selling event space and room blocks to meeting planners. The new booking platform uses a self-reporting database of hotel group block inventory and meeting space to offer meeting planners an OTA-like environment to shop and book event venues at the lowest price. Read on...

Diane Tighe

Wellness is an essential component for planners to incorporate into their 2019 meetings and events, focusing on the complete physical, mental and social well-being of their attendees. The top meeting trend prediction comes as the theme of wellness grows rapidly on a global scale. Diane Tighe of Washington Duke Inn & Golf Club and JB Duke Hotel on the campus of Duke University shares recommendations for physical, mental and social wellness for planners to incorporate in 2019. With nearly 20 years of experience, Diane is a Certified Professional Catering Executive (CPCE) and an active member of NACE since 2001. Read on...

Ron Shah

Airbnb and home sharing has irreversibly impacted consumer leisure travel around the world. Put simply, vacation travelers have changed their preferences. They want to crack open the windows, save some money, and live like a local, and this trend is only accelerating. While hotels have been able to keep high occupancy rates for now, ADRs and profitability have suffered as a result, and there is no offset in sight. Read on...

David Lund

If your hotel has a reasonable amount of meeting space (+10,000 ft) and your banquet business is a significant contributor in your Food and Beverage Department (+20% of F&B revenue), you are going to want to separate local banquet business from group banquet business on all of your financial statements, forecasts, budgets and daily reporting. At this moment you may be asking, "Why would I want to do that? That sounds like a lot of work." There are some very good reasons to make this practice a standard in your hotel. I see many hotel financial statements and most are missing the boat because they do not separate group and local banquet revenues. Separating this reporting and setting it up properly provides powerful information you can use in your hotel to make better decisions and ultimately be more profitable. Read on...

Brett Ellison

With the annual chaos and excitement of the NCAA Tournament upon us once again, this is a good time to take a closer look at how hotel professionals manage high-volume external events. From concerts to conferences, and festivals to big games, the unique challenges of high-volume special events can put a strain on even the most well run and accommodating hotel property. Read on...

Julian Jost

What is it exactly that millennials want? For hotels, this question is more pertinent than ever as Generation Y becomes the largest share of the American workforce. As millennials take more positions as meeting planners, our focus should shift to how to incorporate millennial meeting trends and keep hotel meeting spaces on the cusp of innovation and competition. Mr. Beaubien made a great step towards answering that question in his article on "The Rise of Generation C and Small Meetings," featured on Hotel Executive. In his answer, he focused mainly on technological aspects like online bookability and payment options. From the experience I have with Spacebase, an online booking platform for unique meeting and workshop venues, I can confirm this 100%. Our customer base is mainly young and part of Generation Y. Read on...

Rob Scypinski

Hilton released a survey that asked meeting attendees in the United States, United Kingdom and Germany about their productivity, exercise and diet habits while at hotel meetings. We found that business indeed takes a dive around 2 p.m., and in addition to the afternoon slump, there's a number of other issues that detract from meeting productivity and attendee satisfaction. More than half of meeting attendees pay attention to what they eat and how they exercise in their daily lives, but most were unsatisfied with the ability to maintain this lifestyle while attending meetings at hotels. These meetings aren't just unproductive, they're draining an organization's bottom line. Read on...

Sandy Heydt

Like many other industries, 2016 is a big year for reflection on past and current trends among the meetings and conventions sector, ultimately yielding numerous progressive changes among the way meetings are planned, held and eventually evaluated by meeting hosts and attendees. Meeting hosts are expecting higher attendance and engagement rates, a more efficient use of technology and creative ways to position the meeting as an interactive experience verses a traditional presentation-style event that ultimately maintains a cost-effective price point. To satisfy growing client expectations, meeting planners are expecting more from meeting, convention and event venues. Read on...

David Ashen

Imagine a hotel meeting space that you'd walk into a decade or two ago. Do you see a 3,000-to-5,000-square-foot ballroom designed to seat hundreds of people, along with a patterned carpet and crystal chandeliers? Partitioned walls that subdivide the room to create secondary meeting spaces for smaller events and meetings? Do you conjure up an image of a boardroom for a dozen or two executives, with the requisite large oval table and leather chairs? A vanilla pre-function room for registration before an event and maybe a cocktail after? Read on...

Deborah Popely

The growth of China's hospitality and tourism industry has been well documented and predictions are that it will soon rival many other popular destinations. Less well-known is the role that the Meetings, Incentives, Conventions and Expositions (MICE) industry is playing in that growth. This article discusses how the MICE industry is fueling hospitality sector growth, especially in China's smaller cities and resort areas, and the factors that will determine whether this growth is sustainable. Read on...

David Muller

Making that road show a permanent fixture within a hotel should be as important as creating the exhibit in the first place because the hotel writ mobile and interactive - with its menagerie of decorative and mechanized birds and giraffes, and the choreographed locomotion of a wintertime scene of holiday revelry centered around a incandescent spruce - is a statement of purpose and a reminder, to visitors and staff alike, that a hotel - your hotel - has a story to tell. Read on...

Stephen J. Renard

When the second World War ended West Berlin was an island surrounded by East Germany. In order to help stabilize and make West Berlin self-sufficient (as they were afraid it would be taken over by the Russians) the Berlin Government supported by West European countries `decided in 1965 to start discussions about an overseas import trade show. The ITB means "International Tourist Exchange". Read on...

Julie Pingston

A recent meeting planner survey conducted by the Event Service Professionals Association (ESPA) reveals that meeting planners view event services managers (ESM) as trusted and valued partners. This sentiment holds true for first-time meetings and events as well as booking repeat business at hotels, convention centers and convention and visitors bureaus. Read on...

Madeline Daryadel

"Been there... done that," seems to be the modem of today. "Same old, same old", but why? It is easy to look outside of the box and be creative. Bring the beach, a concert feel or Latin beat into your dreams of the perfect wedding. Put your nuptials on another level and give your family and friends an event the will be talking about for years to come. Read on...

Madeline Daryadel

Weddings, often considered filler weekend business for hotels can be extremely profitable when the effort is made to turn a wedding reception into a wedding event for local as well as or out-of-town guests. With the upturn in the economy the spend on the Food & Beverage portion has risen by several percentage points which is always good for business. However, catering to the entire occasion by offering welcome baskets, turndown amenities, a flavored coffee with a croissant or bagel as a departing gift and planned recreational activities can mean thousands in additional revenue for a property. Read on...

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Coming up in October 2019...

Revenue Management: Focus On Profit

Revenue Management is still a relatively new profession within hotel operations and as such, it continues to evolve. One significant trend in this area is a shift away from using revenue as the foundation to generate key performance indicators (KPIs) and to instead place the emphasis on profit. Traditionally, revenue managers have relied on total revenue per available room (TrevPAR) and revenue per available room (RevPAR) as the basis of their KPIs. Now, some revenue managers are using gross operating profit per available room (GOPPAR) as their primary KPI. This puts profit at the center of revenue management strategy, and managers are increasingly searching for new ways to increase the profitability of their hotels. Return on Investment is the objective of any hotel investment, so it is only logical that profitability and ROI will be emphasized going forward. Another trend is an expanded focus on direct hotel bookings. Revenue managers know that one way to increase profitability is to steer guests away from online travel agencies (OTAs) and book directly with the hotel. This tactic also reinforces brand identity and loyalty, and encourages repeat business. In addition, it provides a valuable platform to market the hotel directly to the customer, and to upsell room upgrades or other services to them. Another trend for revenue managers involves automation in their software programs. Revenue management systems with automation are far more desirable than those without it. Automating data entry and logistics increases efficiency, allowing managers to spend more time on formulating strategy. As a bonus, an automated system helps with aggregating and interpreting data. The October issue of the Hotel Business Review will address these developments and document how some leading hotels are executing their revenue management strategies.