Hotel Online  Special Report


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Le Méridien Partners with LRA Worldwide to Achieve
a More Consistent Global Brand Experience

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LONDON, England / HORSHAM, Pennsylvania; September 20, 2006 – Le Méridien, the global hotel brand with a European-French heritage and more than 120 properties worldwide, has selected LRA Worldwide, Inc., to design and administer a program that ensures a consistent delivery of the Le Méridien brand on a global basis.  A joint Le Méridien – LRA team developed the customized site inspection protocol and LRA consultants are currently rolling it out to the entire portfolio for the 3rd and 4th Quarter of 2006. 

Le Méridien brand was acquired by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. in November of 2005.  LRA has partnered with Starwood since 1999, and currently provides the brand assurance programs for W Hotels, Westin, Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton and The Luxury Collection. Le Méridien is now the sixth Starwood brand to partner with LRA. 

“LRA was a natural choice for Le Méridien,” explained Eva Ziegler, Senior Vice President of Le Méridien brand. “LRA’s extensive experience with Starwood and its industry-leading approach provide us with the confidence that the Le Méridien brand experience will be delivered consistently and flawlessly through our associates around the world.” 

LRA is uniquely equipped to run the Starwood program, as its QA practice is but one part of its integrated Customer Experience Management consulting offering. With many clients, LRA bundles its quality assurance services with a standards review and writing process, the design and development of related training programs, and rigorous “voice of customer” and employee engagement research.   In this way, LRA helps clients “operationalize the brand” – turn brand promise and customer strategy into operational reality. 

“It is very gratifying that Le Méridien and Starwood have opted to expand our relationship,” said John Roberto, Executive Vice President of LRA and director of the firm’s Quality Assurance practice. “Starwood leadership recognizes that our services go well beyond a typical ‘mystery shop;’ our professional consultants are trained to focus on the brand, first and foremost, which aligns LRA’s capabilities nicely with Starwood’s corporate goals.” 

In addition to the multiple engagements with Starwood, LRA provides customized quality assurance, brand compliance, inspection, audit and mystery shopping programs to a number of leading brands in lodging, hospitality, sports, entertainment and leisure, both internationally and domestically. 

About Le Méridien:
Founded in Paris in 1972, Le Méridien epitomizes European service culture, with a commitment to offering guests a unique experience, respecting local culture and appealing to the curious and open-minded guest who appreciates the good things in life. Le Méridien has more than 120 properties in 52 different countries; almost 70 percent of the Le Méridien properties are located in Europe, Africa and the Middle East with an aggressive growth plan in North American and Asia-Pacific currently underway.

About LRA Worldwide, Inc:
LRA Worldwide, Inc., is a leading consulting, organizational development and research company that specializes in Customer Experience Management (CEM). LRA helps companies and brands design and deliver the optimal customer experience across all key touch points using an integrated suite of services that measure and improve service quality, customer satisfaction, employee performance, loyalty, customer advocacy and profitability. LRA specializes in “operationalizing the brand” – turning brand promise and customer strategy into operational reality.  LRA’s tactical CEM practice areas include Customer Experience Strategy Design, Standards Development & Content Management, Organizational Development & Training, Customer and Employee Research and Quality Assurance & Mystery Shopping; these are either deployed together in a strategic manner to continually monitor and improve the customer experience or deployed individually to address a specific client tactical need. 

LRA’s clients include some of the world’s leading companies and brands in the hospitality industry and beyond, including Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Hard Rock, the PGA TOUR, Albertsons Supermarkets, the NBA and MGM MIRAGE.  For more information, visit the company’s Web site at www.LRAworldwide.com.

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Contact:

Zachary Conen
Director of Marketing
+1.215.449.0304
  zach.conen@lraworldwide.com
www.lraworldwide.com
 

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Also See: Jeffrey Gurtman Joins LRA Worldwide as a Senior Consultant; Customer Experience Management Consulting Firm Hires Host of Popular Television Show Travel Spies for its Quality Assurance Practice / September 2006
LRA Worldwide to Exhibit at The American Marketing Association Marketing Research Conference in Chicago/ September 2006
LRA Worldwide Appoints John Roberto to Lead Quality Assurance Group; Hospitality Industry Veteran to Oversee Multiple Brand Teams and More Than 4,000 Annual Site Visits / June 2006
LRA Worldwide and W Hotels Featured Presenters at 18th Annual Internal Branding Conference / April 2006
LRA Worldwide Is retained by Hard Rock Hotels & Casinos to “Operationalize” the Rock ‘n’ Roll Guest Experience / March 2006
Choice Hotels Canada Employs LRA Worldwide for Mystery Shopping Brand Assurance Program / February 2006
LRA Develops Innovative Quality Assurance/Mystery Shopping Program for Leading Canadian Hotel Company Audit to Measure Functional and Emotional Elements of “The Delta Hotels Guest Experience” / October 2005
The Beverly Hilton and LRA Worldwide Renew Quality Assurance Partnership / August 2005
Grupo Posadas Selects LRA Worldwide to Conduct Customer Satisfaction and Loyalty Research / February 2005
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey Partners with LRA Worldwide to Manage and Improve Customer Experience / September 2004
Hyatt Hotels Corp. Selects LRA for Quality Assurance Services / Aug 2004
Dover Downs Gaming & Entertainment, Inc. and Dover Motorsports, Inc. Are Not Leaving Employee Engagement to Chance; Sister Companies Partner with LRA to Measure Employee Engagement / April 2004
Pestana Hotels & Resorts Selects LRA Worldwide to Manage Guest Satisfaction Survey Program / January 2004
Interstate Hotels & Resorts and LRA Worldwide Partner on New Brand and Quality Initiative / October 2003


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