The Embassy Suites Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, provides full guest accessibility under the terms of the Americans with Disabilities Act, and most of those accommodations are not apparent to guests. Awareness training for employees further reinforces quality service by encouraging employees' sensitivity to guests' special needs. Here are a few of the ideas described in the article: high-contrast color schemes for doors and walls to assist in locating doorways; steps equipped with lighted strips; elevator doors on slow timers; vending-machine controls at a low height; beds on raised frames; careful placement of the room's fixtures and amenities; fire alarms equipped with strobes and horns; under-the-pillow vibrating alarms; roll-in showers with benches; grab bars in strategic locations; TDDs; closed-caption TVs; door-knocker flashers; and alarm clocks with large displays and a “talking” feature. Employees are taught not to be fearful of people who are disabled and are given instruction in how to address comfortably and naturally the needs of those guests.
Attracting the very wealthy can be a challenge, but the potential rewards are great because a minuscule number of frequent travelers hold the key to substantial tourism revenues. Here's what affluent travelers seek in a destination
American hotels originally installed concierge service to remain competitive in the 1980s' guest-amenity race. While recession halted the rapid growth in new concierge desks, many hotels have been loath to cut out their concierge service because concierges have proved their value to hotel guests. Indeed, guests expect hotels at a certain quality level to have a concierge. Concierges have professionalized their calling, through their association, Les Clefs d'Or, which now sponsors a certification process. Moreover, the concierge concept has been adopted by such other businesses as department stores and commercial real-estate concerns.
This response to an article in last year's “Educators' Forum” about master's-level hospitality education supports the concept of competency areas, but disagrees with the idea of functional competencies
The B&B segment is growing and as it grows its characteristics increasingly match those of the lodging industry as a whole. Fewer B&Bs are being opened as second-income businesses, while more are being developed as properties that provide primary income to professional owner-operators. A substantial change over the past operation of B&Bs is the addition of restaurants or other food service in dayparts other than breakfast and to customers other than overnight guests. The greatest threat to B&Bs is zoning and other local regulations that tend to restrict B&B operations.
This article explores gender-based differences in hotel-selection and service-use preferences, based on a survey of 250 male and female business travelers. As one might expect, both men and women consider basic services, such as clean, comfortable rooms and free local phone service, to be important. But businesswomen consider security, in-room services and amenities (such as hair dryers and minibars), and low price to be more important selection criteria than do businessmen. Male business travelers are more likely to value business-related services and facilities (such as fax machines and suites). One intriguing finding of the study is that, although businesswomen take an average 7.4 domestic trips per year compared to businessmen's 11.1, women take more international business trips than men and their stays tend to be nearly twice as long.
Managers use many financial ratios to judge the health of their businesses. With the recent requirement of a statement of cash flow (SCF) by the Financial Accounting Standards Board, managers now have a new set of ratios that will give a realistic picture of the business. The ratios include cash flow-interest coverage, cash flow-dividend coverage, and cash flow from operations to cash flow in investments. These ratios are particularly useful because they show changes in a hotel or restaurant's cash position over time, rather than at a given moment, as is the case with many other ratios.
The People's Republic of China wants and needs the foreign capital that tourism attracts. The question raised here is whether the government can restore the service offered by its tourist guides. The authors argue that the guides' reduced service reflects a failure of motivation
This example of a classroom case study introduces Dalmahoy, the family estate of the Earl of Morton, located near Edinburgh, Scotland. Dalmahoy has been leased to an outside management firm that has successfully operated similar properties; nevertheless, Dalmahoy's numbers have not met expectations. Beyond its picturesque appearance, the property's chief attraction is golf, although it has a health club and other facilities. Competition from other golf courses, large and small, seems to be a factor.
Hospitality-management schools can educate their students in the responsibility and rewards of community service, as demonstrated by these lessons from a human-relations course that requires community service at the Cornell hotel school.
As hotel owners closely monitor their investments and apply strict criteria to selecting and evaluating management companies, management contracts are being rewritten to be performance-based. This article sets forth the criteria established by owners and asset managers to select and monitor third-party hotel-management companies (including chains), and details the type and timeliness of information (reports) expected of management companies. A survey of 43 owners using management companies showed that the selection and evaluation processes give leverage to owners. Management companies are being held accountable and pressured to focus their efforts on a particular asset to satisfy owners or risk losing contracts.
Although British hotel managers are more interested in college graduates' skills in such regulated areas as sanitation than are American managers, both have a strong interest in what Ellsworth Statler called “pleasant people”
Effective control mechanisms discourage theft and help improve your bottom line. Such procedures are always important, but in the current competitive environment, they can make the difference between survival and bankruptcy
It's now common for company-reimbursed lodging to be from a list of approved hotels. Hotel chains that wish to take advantage of the evolving nature of corporate travel management should be prepared to centralize their administration, expand their information reporting, revise their rate-setting procedures, enhance their travel-agency relationships, forgo some yield-management revenue, overrule individual properties' authority to make deals, revamp marketing strategies, and integrate their business-travel services.
A well thought-out crisis plan can help management respond and control damage to the organization's reputation, financial condition, market share, and brand value. Everyone, from senior management to receptionists, will have a predetermined role to play in an anticipated crisis. A facility crisis-training program should familiarize employees with the plan, including deployment of resources, notification and protection of guests, communication with the media, and clean-up procedures. Portions of a sample crisis-management plan are included to help readers design their own plans, on their own or in conjunction with a crisis-management consultant.
In the same way that customers are the focus of marketing models designed to increase sales, employees-as-customers can be at the core of programs designed to improve human-resources management by increasing morale and reducing turnover
Most hotel and restaurant owners know they can turn to executive recruiters for help in finding candidates for their open positions, but not everyone realizes that different kinds of recruiters offer different approaches. Here's a case study showing how a retained recruiter found a candidate well suited to manage a posh resort
Transformational leadership is a way to convey to employees where the organization is going and their role in that journey. Transformational leaders in this study demonstrated a clear sense of direction, emphasized organizational objectives and their followers' needs, displayed a strong sense of values and ethics, created high standards, and served as an example for others to follow. Such executives are viewed as effective by both peers and subordinates, and as possessing the courage to foster an environment of growth and development.
Sometimes the best way to develop a prime site is to renovate an existing hotel—a strategy that can be very successful, especially if the property has historical significance or if its cultural or architectural heritage is unique
The lodging industry's sales efforts are largely overlooking a substantial group of relatively affluent, frequent travelers who buy special-interest travel. But many of these travelers buy from travel packagers who do not buy hotel rooms through the normal channels. Here's a look at how to connect with the growing market for special-interest travel