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Venkat Rajagopal

Cleaning is important not only from the point of hygiene but also from the point of safety, security and complying with legislation. Hygiene is an important issue to all kinds of accommodation seekers irrespective of whatkind of accommodation they seek. When the accommodation provider continues to ignore hygiene that will meet guest expectations, no guest is going to return back. Key to any successful cleaning programme is the employee should learn about the brand's core value for which they are working. Accommodation providers should conduct regular audit on hygiene and keep staff well trained on what to look on their daily rounds. Read on...

Frank Meek

Hotel renovations often focus on guest-pleasing amenities, new design considerations or technologically advanced upgrades. While these will certainly draw more clientele, you want to attract the right customers. Renovations can appeal to another type of guests entirely - pests. But, there's good news: Pest management doesn't have to wait until your hotel is up and running. You can start preventing pests beginning at preliminary stages. With so many details to monitor during a renovation, it's important to not let pest control slip through the cracks; otherwise, you'll have pests coming through the cracks at your hotel. Read on...

Bob Carr

As cardholder data breaches at hotels occur with increasing frequency, it is more important than ever to take precautions to keep your hotel and guests secure. First, become familiar with threats to card data security - and the consequences of a compromise. Next, learn the requirements for Payment Card Industry compliance put in place to help protect cardholder data. Finally, apply these requirements by taking steps to alleviate some of the confusion surrounding PCI compliance. Read on...

Frank Meek

They are the centerpiece of your marketing and the crux of your competitive advantage. Your hotel amenities define the guest experience and can be the reason that guests choose a stay at your property over others in the market. Amenities like fitness centers, spa facilities, swimming pools and foodservice areas provide your guests with comfort, convenience and relaxation during their stay. These added-value services earn you bookings, but they may also attract unwanted guests to your property. Find out why pests see the essentials for survival - food, water and shelter - in many of your extras. Read on...

Frank Meek

Are your potential customers reading online reviews before booking a stay at your hotel? Are they ruling out your establishment because of a bad review about poor customer service or a pest sighting? These are the questions that concern hoteliers like you every day as more and more consumers use online reviews to make their purchasing decisions. Orkin recently partnered with national hospitality and linguistic experts to determine the frequency of pests mentioned on hotels review blogs and the impact of these encounters on customer loyalty. Read on for the full results of the study and how you can preserve your hotel's five-star reputation. Read on...

Peter Goldmann

Hotels, restaurants, casinos and resorts are notoriously desirable targets for thieves and con artists, mainly because of the large sums of cash flowing through these businesses. And, indeed, statistics do show that theft and fraud take a serious financial toll on the bottom lines of most hospitality entities. According to industry statistics, as much as 5% of annual food and beverage revenue is lost to fraud by hospitality companies. The good news is that there is a lot that hotel management can do to prevent and detect illegal activity that they're not doing now. Read on...

Frank Meek

With hybrid cars, energy-saving appliances and recycled products on the rise, the environmentally friendly movement has never been more popular. What many people don't know is that the pest control industry, for several years, has been making its own move toward "greener" alternatives to traditional techniques. But what does this mean for your hotel? It means better pest control results with less risk. Newer techniques and technologies are much more tailored to the biology and behavior of each target pest than treatments in the past. Consequently, they are more effective, virtually unnoticeable to your guests and much less likely to pose health risks. The days of spraying baseboards with pesticides and often malodorous treatments are over. Read on...

Frank Meek

Summertime and the living is easy by the pool - unless guests are forced to swat pests while they tan. As warm weather brings mosquitoes, flies and stinging pests out in numbers, hoteliers need to prepare themselves to fight back and make sure their guests' relaxing poolside experiences aren't ruined by buzzing insects. Read on...

Frank Meek

With Labor Day just around the corner, the housekeeping staff soon will scramble to clean rooms and managers will get ready to deal with overbooking woes. And while "walking" guests to another establishment may be a common practice during a busy season, hoteliers should ensure that they're walking guests due to overbooking - not because a regulator or inspector has forced a room closure as the result of a pest infestation. Though pest control is by no means the only area that regulatory inspectors will review, it is an important one. Inspectors will review pest control for the same reasons that hoteliers employ proactive pest management programs - pests can threaten public health, signify greater problems like poor sanitation and cause structural damage. Not to mention that a serious pest problem can lead to claims, additional expense or even a lawsuit from angry customers or negative media coverage. Read on...

Frank Meek

Hair on the pillow, lipstick on the glass, cockroach in the bathtub. They're three scenarios of which hotel urban legends can be made. But which one bothers guests most? To find the answer to this question, Orkin, Inc. fielded a poll to consumers and hotel insiders to learn their perceptions of housekeeping issues and uncovered some interesting attitudes in the process. When it comes to regular hotel users (i.e., those who spend at least one night a month in a hotel), they may not be the most forgiving lot if their bathroom is dirty: they rated bathroom cleanliness as a top concern, and when asked to select conditions that might cause them not to return to an establishment, more than nine out of every 10 (92 percent) chose "visibly unclean bathtub." Read on...

Frank Meek

For many of us, the start of a New Year means another list of New Year's resolutions. We set goals and start over fresh, pledging to improve ourselves over the next 365 days. Many hoteliers will make their own New Year's resolutions, from "increase business" to "raise the value of our service." But one thing that can spoil the chances of your hotel achieving these goals is pests. During the winter months, pests can pose a threat as they seek refuge from the harsh outside weather. In fact, some mice will gnaw through holes as small as a dime in search of shelter, food and water. In a recent poll Orkin conducted, 85 percent of regular hotel-goers reported they might never return to an establishment if they saw or heard a mouse. In the summer months, rodent pressure can give way to fly and cockroach infestations, which are also very off-putting to hotel guests. Read on...

Peter Goldmann

The problem for hospitality companies, among others, is that thieves have found more and more ways to steal customer credit card and other personal information in order to create counterfeit credit cards in the victim's name.,..or to use the credit card information to fraudulently purchase goods over the Internet with the victim's identity. In addition, restaurant and front desk point-of-sale locations are common "hang-outs" for dishonest employees armed with credit card "skimmers" that record guest credit card data for later use in identity fraud. Read on...

Frank Meek

Hotel guests weren't the only ones enjoying the unusually mild temperatures this past winter. The warm weather allowed pests to thrive throughout the season, and with such a low pest mortality rate over the last few months, summer is sure to bring even more pest infestations than usual. To keep pests out this spring, take advantage of your hotel's sanitation program as a pest prevention tool. Read on...

Peter Goldmann

Despite the constant barrage of news about corporate theft and fraud, there are still far too many situations in which hospitality companies unknowingly pay criminally-minded individuals or phony companies posing as legitimate vendors. How is it possible that "legitimate" companies have a private mailbox at the local UPS Store, a private residence, or even a prison address? Or that invoices a month apart with consecutive numbers both get paid? Or "invoices from a "vendor" whose address happens to match that of a company employee get paid? Read on...

Frank Meek

Whether it's lounging by the pool, enjoying dinner at a nice restaurant or just relaxing with a good book, your guests' favorite vacation activities can quickly be disrupted with the sound of an annoying "buzz..." Besides serving as a nuisance, flies also pose serious health risks to your guests and staff. Since flies feed on feces and other decaying matter, they can carry up to a half billion bacteria on the outside of their bodies, including E. coli, Salmonella and Staphylococcus. In fact, flies are the No. 1 transmitters of disease in the world. Read on...

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Coming up in July 2019...

Hotel Spa: Pursuing Distinction

The Wellness Movement continues to evolve and hotel spas continue to innovate in order to keep pace. Fueled by intense competition within the industry, hotel spas are seeking creative ways to differentiate themselves in the market. An increasing number of customers are searching for very specific, niche treatments that address their particular health concerns and, as a result, some leading spas have achieved distinction by offering only one specialized treatment. Meditation and mindfulness practices are becoming increasingly mainstream as are alternative treatments and therapies, such as Ayurvedic therapies, Reiki, energy work and salt therapy. Some spas specialize in stress management and offer lifestyle coaching sessions as part of their program.  Other spas are fully embracing new technologies as a way to differentiate themselves, such as providing wearable devices that track health and fitness biomarkers, or robots programmed with artificial intelligence to control spa environments, or virtual reality add-ons that transport guests to relaxing places around the world. Some spas have chosen to specialize in medical procedures such as liposuction, laser skin therapy, phototherapy facials, Botox and facial fillers, acupuncture and permanent hair removal, in addition to cosmetic body shaping procedures and  teeth whitening treatments. Similarly, other spas are offering comprehensive health check-ups and counseling services for those who are interested in disease prevention treatments. Finally, as hotel spas continue to become more diverse, accessible and specialized, there is a growing demand for health professionals with a specific area of expertise. There is a proliferation of top class, quality wellness practitioners who make a name for themselves by offering their services around the globe, including athletes, chefs, doctors, physical trainers and weight loss specialists. The July issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these trends and developments and examine how some hotel spas are integrating them into their operations.