Library Archives

 
Eduardo Fernandez

The business of hotels is always in flux, consistently aiming to meet the growing needs of their guests, build loyalty and stand out from the crowd of competitors. With food expectations mounting, made popular via social media frenzy, the growing importance of food-rating apps and the heavy use of "top lists," providing round-ups of the best burger, ice cream cone or brunch in a state, city or neighborhood, travel destinations have had to tout their local food scene as a means to gain visitors. With hotels offering food and beverage options in highly-competitive markets, brands need to shift their restaurants to cater to the growing food culture. Read on...

Simon Hudson

Après ski in ski resorts used to consist of a few pints of ale and plate of nachos, but increasingly the bubbly allure of champagne, beer and spirits is being packaged by resorts into beer and distillery tours, private in-room liquor tastings, champagne toasts on the slopes, and beverage and food pairings. This article takes a look at some of the ski industry's more innovative beverage-focused offerings, from North America's highest-elevation fine-dining in Telluride offering a choice of 400 wines 12,000 feet above sea level, to Pow Day, the Waldorf Astoria Park City's own custom craft beer. Read on...

Julio Perez

The all-inclusive model has gone from a low-cost cookie-cutter to the cutting edge of hyper personalized service. Understanding and adapting to the needs and demands of today's niche-driven, segmented market where diverse subsets of experience hungry clientele is all searching for a comprehensive vacation comprised of equal parts value and authenticity is the key to successfully navigating the current and future travel and tourism industry. Bahia Principe Hotels & Resorts' Julio Perez, Sales Executive Vice President, offers a unique perspective on how to survive and thrive today's ever-changing landscape. Read on...

Armando Cabral

Philanthropy has recently mixed its way into the multi-billion dollar adult beverage business; and restaurants, bars, hotels and liquor brands are making marked impact on causes around the country. Customers are becoming "givers" with little to no effort, while businesses are building goodwill within their communities and among their beneficiaries. Armando Cabral, general manager of Ty Lounge at Four Seasons Resort The Biltmore Santa Barbara, explores establishments from Portland to New York City (with a stop in Las Vegas, of course) to see who is doing what, where, for whom and why. Read on...

Paul Hancock

More and more food and beverage operations in hotels are having an active online presence by making their websites more mobile friendly, thus more accessible to smartphone users. Adding to that, social media also has a huge part to play in the food and beverage industry’s revenue. Also, apps like Open Table and Yelp now make it possible for customers to make reservations in the palm of their hand. Food and beverage operations aren’t just using technology to bring customers to them, many are providing their servers with smartphones to take orders. Smartphones are creating more efficiency within the food and beverage operation, which all means boosts in revenues. Read on...

Alan Roberts

As F&B trends are constantly evolving, hotels and owners must collaborate to stay ahead of the curve and provide an elevated dining experience for guests and a high return on investment for owners. From utilizing smart, flexible design to understanding guest preferences and building a strong partnership between hotels and owners, these are the necessary ingredients for success. When done properly, incorporating innovative concepts can work in a hotel's favor by creating more in-house revenue-generating opportunities. Alan Roberts, global head, Embassy Suites by Hilton, shares insights on how the brand has followed this strategy through its E'Terie and Brickstones concepts and enhancements to its signature Evening Reception and made-to-order breakfast. Read on...

Ray Chung

Hotels are learning to capitalize on their food & beverage offerings. No longer just a required, unprofitable amenity for guests, the hotel restaurant and especially the bar component are becoming proper revenue sources. People are spending more time—and more money—at these outlets. In some surveys, fully half of travelers report that they choose their hotel for its restaurant. And from the operator's point of view, hotels offer a number of advantages over freestanding restaurants, from not having to manage escalating rents to practical matters, such as having the assurance of a full-time engineering team on site. Read on...

Gary Isenberg

If hoteliers want a lesson regarding how drastically dining trends have evolved over the past 40 years, they need to look no further than the history of Howard Johnson's. A welcome respite for vacationing families and interstate road warriors in the mid-20th century, those orange-domed waystations dotted nearly every highway across the country. At HoJo's zenith, the chain numbered than 1,000 restaurants and 500 motor lodges. Read on...

John Armstrong

Over the past 25 years, the Sheraton Seattle's Gingerbread Village has become one of the most anticipated holiday attractions in Seattle, drawing more than 200,000 visitors each year while raising funds to help researchers end Type 1 diabetes. Since 1992, the Sheraton Seattle's expert culinary team has partnered with acclaimed local architecture firms and the Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties to design, bake and delight crowds with intricate, larger-than-life gingerbread designs. The event is free to the public, but donations to the Northwest Chapter of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation are encouraged. As a tribute to the city, this year's theme embraces Seattle's past and future, prompting us to look back at how Gingerbread Village grew from a modest event to a beloved Seattle tradition as well as a highly effective sales, marketing and public relations tool. Read on...

Larry Trabulsi

This article focuses on evaluating external service providers for optimizing Food and Beverage (F&B) Department profitability, and is the second in a series on outsourcing services at hotels. As my colleague, Michael Doyle, asked in the first article in this series: “Why should hotels outsource, or challenge a traditional operations model?” The most common answer is to maximize profitability. Industry-wide, F&B revenue represents over 25% of total hotel revenue, yet generating a meaningful profit margin in F&B (which is difficult to measure with accuracy) can be challenging. In many hotels F&B can be an integral part of the guest experience, and a large source of revenue for the hotel. Read on...

Michael Barbera

Time pressure is a significant driver of human decision-making. Time pressure is both artificial and natural. Time pressure is popular with airlines, hotels and sporting tickets. When purchasing an airline ticket it is likely that you have encountered a message that stated, "time remaining to purchase", or "seats reserved for", followed by a clock counting down. Ticketing agencies such as Ticketmaster and online retailer eBay are known for their time pressure sales methods. The high time pressure used by airlines, hotels and ticketing agencies are overt and intentional; however, not all time pressure is overt or intentional. Read on...

Michael Barbera

The food service industry is volatile due to the low barrier to entry, high level of competition and significantly low-profit margins. Foodservice operators are likely to reduce expenditures and save money wherever possible. Additionally, food service operators are known for being creative to attain an advantage on the competition. Designing menus that are less taxing on the consumer's choice are a common approach to increasing revenue and enhancing the consumer experience. Furthermore, unique menus are likely to attribute to an improved consumer experience that carries an intangible value of word of mouth marketing between consumers. Read on...

David Ashen

There was a time when a hotel restaurant was the place to be seen. A special anniversary or family celebration at a grand hotel with a formal meal was a real treat and something to look forward to. While that's still true to some extent, changes in lifestyles and the hospitality industry have had a major impact on the way most people celebrate special events and casually socialize, including those centered on an extravagant meal at a grand hotel. Often, today's festivities focus less on elaborate banquets than they do on a lively bar scene with local brews, spirits and traditional drinks, along with inspired dishes at a restaurant of note, including those located in hotels. Read on...

Scott Acton

In recent years, the hotel industry has seen a shift in revenue streams that it is eating up. While gaming revenue was once king in Las Vegas, it has now been overtaken by the food and beverage (F&B) segment. According to Moody's Financial Services, in Las Vegas specifically, non-gaming revenue has now easily surpassed gambling revenue, making up between 55 percent to 65 percent of total revenues with hotel, food and beverage spending representing the largest non-gaming income streams. Thanks to millennials, along with growing numbers of more discerning consumers, a shift in consumer desires has affected the way those in the hotel industry think, build and design. Consumers now demand and expect a fully immersive and experiential outing when they eat, drink and "make merry." Read on...

Brian Mitchell

Every task performed the same way, every member of the floor team on the same page, a place for everything and everything in its place. It's the surest way to make your patrons feel that they can relax back in the hands of true professionals. This enhances every dimension of their experience. It encourages the kind of word of mouth (and word-of-internet) that you most want. It keeps those guests coming back, certain of a reassuring constancy in meeting their needs and preferences. It keeps them bringing others with them, to bask in the glow of deft attendance. And, most importantly, it keeps increasing their spend, in all the best ways, for them and for your establishment. Read on...

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Coming up in April 2019...

Guest Service: A Culture of YES

In a recent global consumers report, 97% of the participants said that customer service is a major factor in their loyalty to a brand, and 76% said they view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them. And since there is no industry more reliant on customer satisfaction than the hotel industry, managers must be unrelenting in their determination to hire, train and empower the very best people, and to create a culture of exceptional customer service within their organization. Of course, this begins with hiring the right people. There are people who are naturally service-oriented; people who are warm, empathetic, enthusiastic, pleasant, thoughtful and optimistic; people who take pride in their ability to solve problems for the hotel guests they are serving. Then, those same employees must be empowered to solve problems using their own judgment, without having to track down a manager to do it. This is how seamless problem solving and conflict resolution are achieved in guest service. This willingness to empower employees is part of creating a Culture of Yes within an organization.  The goal is to create an environment in which everyone is striving to say “Yes”, rather than figuring out ways to say, “No”. It is essential that this attitude be instilled in all frontline, customer-facing, employees. Finally, in order to ensure that the hotel can generate a consistent level of performance across a wide variety of situations, management must also put in place well-defined systems and standards, and then educate their employees about them. Every employee must be aware of and responsible for every standard that applies in their department. The April issue of the Hotel Business Review will document what some leading hotels are doing to cultivate and manage guest satisfaction in their operations.