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Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 56
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“Great American Hoteliers: Pioneers of the Hotel Industry”; 
The Stanley Hotel; Will Hotel Franchisees Remember?
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By Stanley Turkel, MHS, ISHC
September 24,  2009
 

1.  “Great American Hoteliers: Pioneers of the Hotel Industry”

My new book will be published and available by the end of October 2009.  Stephen Rushmore writes in the Foreword:

What better way to learn about the hotel industry than to experience it through the eyes of some of the world’s greatest hoteliers. Stanley Turkel’s book… takes an upfront and personal view of 16 leaders who shaped the American hotel industry over the past century.
 

Book Description

During the thirty years prior to the Civil War, Americans built hotels larger and more ostentatious than any in the rest of the world. These hotels were inextricably intertwined with American culture and customs but were accessible to average citizens. As Jefferson Williamson wrote in "The American Hotel" ( Knopf 1930), hotels were perhaps "the most distinctively American of all our institutions for they were nourished and brought to flower solely in American soil and borrowed practically nothing from abroad". Development of hotels was stimulated by the confluence of travel, tourism and transportation. In 1869, the transcontinental railroad engendered hotels by Henry Flagler, Fred Harvey, George Pullman and Henry Plant. The Lincoln Highway and the Interstate Highway System triggered hotel development by Carl Fisher, Ellsworth Statler, Kemmons Wilson and Howard Johnson. The airplane stimulated Juan Trippe, John Bowman, Conrad Hilton, Ernest Henderson, A.M. Sonnabend and John Hammons.. My research into the lives of these great hoteliers reveals that none of them grew up in the hospitality business but became successful through their intense on-the- job experiences. My investigation has uncovered remarkable and startling true stories about these pioneers, some of whom are well-known and others who are lost in the dustbin of history.

To order a copy, go to my new book website: www.greatamericanhoteliers.com and click on the Order link.  My publisher AuthorHouse will handle the transaction.

If you want an autographed copy, send a check for $43.00 ($39.95 plus $3.05 for shipping and handling) along with your address to:
   Stanley Turkel
   147-03 Jewel Avenue
   Flushing, N.Y. 11367
  
2.  The Stanley Hotel Celebrates its 100th Anniversary

As the road emerges from a winding mountain pass and enters the Estes Valley, the majestic Stanley Hotel comes into view.  The Stanley is a historic landmark hotel situated high in the mountains, less than six miles away from the Rocky Mountain National Park.  A recent multi-million dollar renovation has restored this 138 guestroom hotel to its original grandeur in time for its 100th birthday.

The Stanley Hotel, known for its architecture, magnificent setting and famous visitors, may possibly be best known for its role in Stephen King’s novel “The Shining”.

The hotel was built by F. O. Stanley when he relocated to Estes Park because of poor health.  Twin brothers Freelan O. Stanley and Francis E. Stanley founded the Stanley Motor Carriage Company after selling their photographic dry plate business to Eastman Kodak.  From 1902 to 1924, the company’s Stanley Steamers outsold every gasoline- fueled car with sales second only to Columbia Electric automobiles.

Construction of the Stanley Hotel began in 1907 with steel support beams and timber cut from the earlier Bear Lake fire which may account for the faint smell of wood smoke which is evident on summer days.  Before his death in 1940, F. O. Stanley not only built the Stanley Hotel but also installed a water and power facility and Estes Park’s first bank and fairgrounds.

3.  Café des Artistes Closes After 92 Years

One of New York’s most historic and theatrical restaurants has closed. George and Jenifer Lang, owners since 1975, said that they had decided not to reopen after summer vacation.  GM Jenifer Lang said that “George is 85, business is slow and we feel it’s time.” The café opened in 1917.  The famous murals were painted by Howard Chandler Christy starting in 1934.

4.  Will Franchisees Remember?  

Can you believe that some hotel franchisors whose agreements are usually extraordinarily one-sided, are exhibiting an unheard-of flexibility in negotiating with their franchisees?  Even if the cause is the severe economic recession, it is still a rare and appreciated benefit.  The concessions include:

  • Fee reductions
  • Extensions on PIP deadlines
  • Reduction of otherwise required amenities
  • Approved delays in renovation projects
  • No new service standards
Owners are assessing and measuring their franchisor’s responses and storing away their reactions for future deal-making.  It appears that the most flexible franchisors are Wyndham, Choice, Hilton, IHG, Starwood and Marriott.  Then there are those franchisors who have decided to hold the line on many standards like Carlson and LaQuinta.

Listen to Nancy Johnson, Carlson’s executive vice president and chief development officer, “Some reasonableness does come into play, but it’s most important for us to make sure our portfolio of brands is relevant and that standards are maintained to the expectations of our customers.  So this is the time when you should invest in brand standards in order to prepare to take advantage of market opportunities when they come back.  And we are telling franchisees that while we understand the economy right now, this is what you’ll have to do to maintain the brand.”

Carlson’s hard line makes one wonder if they understand just how difficult it is for owners to pay debt service when their occupancies and average daily rates are dropping precipitously.  Johnson’s response to the question as to how she feels about the majority of other major brands instituting extended deadlines and curtailing new standards was less than sympathetic:

“My mother would ask then if everyone jumped off the bridge, would you?  You cannot grow a brand and maintain brand values by doing what everyone else is doing.”

When the recession ends, will franchisees remember which franchise companies were sympathetic and helpful during the hard times?
 
5.  Quote of the Month

Those who make peaceful resolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable.
        John F. Kennedy

Stanley Turkel, MHS, ISHC (www.stanleyturkel.com) operates his hotel consulting office as a sole practitioner specializing in franchising issues, asset management and litigation support services.  Turkel’s clients are hotel owners and franchisees, investors and lending institutions.  Turkel serves on the Board of Advisors and lectures at the NYU Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Sports Management.  He is a member of the prestigious International Society of Hospitality Consultants.  His provocative articles on various hotels subjects have been published in the Cornell Quarterly, Lodging Hospitality, Hotel Interactive, Hotel-Online, AAHOA Lodging Business, etc.  Don’t hesitate to call 917-628-8549 or email stanturkel@aol.com.

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Contact:

Stanley Turkel, MHS, ISHC
917-628-8549
stanturkel@aol.com

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Also See: Nobody Asked Me, But No.55 / Exterior-Corridor Hotel Properties; Blackstone Denies Hilton Breakup / Stanley Turkel / August 2009
Nobody Asked Me, But No.54 / Famous Japanese Capsule Hotel; Dunkin’ Donuts Independent Franchise Owners Association; Remember Magic Fingers? / Stanley Turkel / July 2009
Nobody Asked Me, But No.53 / Historic Hotel Theresa: the Waldorf of Harlem; Make Mandatory Arbitration Illegal / Stanley Turkel / June 2009
Nobody Asked Me, But No.52 / At Long Last; New York’s Essex House; Origin of Mother’s Day;  An Annual Feast for Number Crunchers; The End of the Hotel Bathtub?/ Stanley Turkel / May 2009
Nobody Asked Me, But No.51 / Transformation of the Shelton Towers Hotel; One Hotel’s Fate 119 Years Ago / Stanley Turkel / April 2009
Nobody Asked Me, But No.50 / Do You Know About O8A? Do Hotel Franchisees Need Independent Associations?The Best Franchise Advisory Councils / Stanley Turkel / March 2009
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 49 / Slave Trading at the Saint Charles Hotel in Washington DC, Why Are Some Hotel Franchise Companies Defranchising Exterior Corridor Hotels / Stanley Turkel / February 2009
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 48 / New President of Wyndham Ignores the Real Issues; Hotel Franchises Compared to Auto Dealer Franchises / Stanley Turkel / January 2009
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 47 / New CEO of Choice Misses an Opportunity; Lost and Forgotten Hotels; Little Known Hotel Facilities in New York / Stanley Turkel / December 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 45/ Remembering John Curry; Hotel Owners Have The Power / Stanley Turkel / October 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 44 / Hotel Franchise Companies Performance Appraisal Report, a Down-to-earth Assessment of the Hotel Capital Markets / Stanley Turkel / September 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 43  / Hotel Franchisor Companies Ignoring Critical Franchising Issues,  Marriott Leads the Way with Aggressive Environmental Strategies / Stanley Turkel / August 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 42 / Remembering Jack Craver; World Record-Setting Hotels; At Last: A Major Gaming Facility in the Catskills / Stanley Turkel / July 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 41 / Landmark Belleview Biltmore Resort Saved; Hotel Developers Take Note - the Borough of Bronx in NYC Has 1.5 million Residents and Just One Hotel in the AAA Guide; Boutique Hotel Bandwagon / Stanley Turkel / June 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 39 / Say Goodbye To The UFOC; Dunfey Brothers To Be Honored; The Plaza Hotel Reopens After a $400 Million Renovation / Stanley Turkel / April 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 38 / Super 8 Owners Form an Independent Franchise Association; Why Is There a Bible in Every Hotel Room? / Stanley Turkel / March 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 37 / Remember the Savoy Plaza Hotel?; Is Economic Disaster Imminent; Cuba at the Crossroads / Stanley Turkel / February 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 36 / What the Advertisements for the Largest Hotel Franchise Companies Never Mention - Also Measuring Hotel Brand Value / Stanley Turkel / January 2008
Nobody Asked Me, But No. 35 / Casino Expansion Has Transformed America, Exercise Awareness / Stanley Turkel / December 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 34 / IHG’s Great Idea, Sound-Proofing Hotels, Best Western Enters the Upper Midscale Segment, How to Convert Confusion Into Order,  Sign at a Tarrytown, NY Inn, 1798 / November 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 33 / 1957 Murder at the Park Sheraton Hotel; How Much Does A Franchise Really Cost?A Marriage Made in Heaven?; A Good Night’s Sleep at the Benjamin Hotel / Stanley Turkel / October 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 31 - Rhode Island Improves Franchise Rules, What’s Up With Canada? Conversion of a Jail Into a Hotel, The Richest (and Poorest) Places in the U.S. / Stanley Turkel / September 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 31 - Blackstone's Acquisition of Hilton, The Art of Groveling, The Origin of Franchising / Stanley Turkel / August 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But…. No. 30 / Impertinent Questions In Search of Pertinent Answers: Carbon monoxide detectors, exterior-corridor properties / Stanley Turkel / July 2007
How American-Owned Can You Get?, ISHC's CapEx 2007 Report, The Bowery Hotel / Stanley Turkel / June 2007
Hotel Franchising and State Laws, Is Immigration Important? Save the Biltmore, The Good Old Days, Quote of the Month / Stanley Turkel / May 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But - No. 27 / Hotel Franchise Agreements: Mediation, Arbitration or Litigation? / Stanley Turkel / April 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But - No. 26 / Energy Usage and Potential Savings; Great Art in Hotels; Lifestyle Hotels; The Minimum Wage Issue; Quote of the Month / Stanley Turkel / March 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But - No. 25 / Guestroom Design & Amenities, Get a Human, Best Luxury Hotels in the U.S., Turnpike, The Pineapple as Symbol of Hospitality, Fair Franchising / Stanley Turkel / February 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But - No. 24 / Loose Cannon, Fair Franchising, Manhattan Hotel Profits, Hotels of the Future, Interesting Miscellany, Quote of the Month / Stanley Turkel / January 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But - No. 23 / Biting The Hand That Feeds You?, By The Numbers, Shortage of Hotel Rooms, There is No Free Lunch, Iron Laws of Business Travel, Happy New Year / Stanley Turkel / January 2007
Nobody Asked Me, But - No. 22 / Smart Elevators, Tony Marshall’s Memorial, Women in the Hospitality Industry / Stanley Turkel / December 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 21 / The Drake Hotel in New York, Fair Franchising is Not an Oxymoron, By the Numbers, Another Secret Underground Shelter, Passing of Anthony G. Marshall / Stanley Turkel / December 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 20 / Turnabout Is Fairplay, Secret Underground Shelter, By the Numbers, Genuine Fair Franchising/ Stanley Turkel / November 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 19 / International Society of Hospitality Consultants, Great Miami Hotels, Reduce Carbon Monoxide Emissions, Turn Gray Into Gold / Stanley Turkel / November 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 18 / John Q. Hammons, Save the Belleview Biltmore, Chinese Tourism, CFLs, Ernie Byfield, Guestroom Entertainment in 1905 / Stanley Turkel / October 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 17 - AAHOA's 12 Points of Fair Franchising, Protected Territories, / Stanley Turkel / September 2006
The Newest Independent (and Oldest Partially Independent) Franchise Association in the Hotel Industry / Stanley Turkel / September 2006
In Hotel Franchising, Reality Trumps Wishful Thinking / Stanley Turkel / August 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 14; Impact Studies, Stretching Segments, Short-Stay Rentals, Smoke-free Marriotts, Franchising in China, Save the Belleview Biltmore Hotel / August 2006
The U.S. Population Age 65 and Over is Expected to Double in the Next 25 Years; What Does this Mean for the Hotel Industry? / Stanley Turkel / July 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 12; Portman, Women Homeowners, Minimum Wage, Tipping, Brooklyn Bridge, Chinese Tourism, Impact Studies / Stanley Turkel / July 2006
Do Hotel Franchisees Need Independent Franchise Associations? / Stanley Turkel / June 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 10 / Chinese Tourists, Gasoline Prices and Alternatives, GLBT Segment, Travel Agents, FAC's, Manhattan's Record Breaking Year, Impertinent Questions / Stanley Turkel / June 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 9 / Blang, Bathtubs, Best Green, Arbitration, Best Western, AAHOA, State Franchising Laws, VFR / Stanley Turkel / May 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 8; Bathtubs, Smokefree Hotels, Maps, Saving Water, Nevada Revenues, H.P. Rama, Ritz-Carlton, Statler Service Code, Mother’s Day / Stanley Turkel / April 2006
Nobody Asked Me, But….No. 7 / Stanley Turkel, MHS, ISHC / March 2006
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