Downtown Houston’s Hotel ICON, Benchmark Hospitality’s
First Personal Luxury Hotel Property, Installs GuestWare
to Enhance Personalized Service
HOUSTON - April 13, 2004 — Hotel ICON, the first Personal Luxury Hotel for Benchmark Hospitality, has selected GuestWare as its customer relationship management solution. The downtown Houston property installed GuestWare software this week to enhance guest recognition and improve service quality.

“We chose GuestWare because Benchmark Hospitality has created a new niche in the hotel industry that has been named Personal Luxury Hotels,” says Troy Bennett, managing director of the new division. “Our goal with this new type of hotel is to provide a level of personalized service unmatched by other luxury or boutique hotel groups. GuestWare will help us provide this level of service by enabling us to anticipate the needs of guests before they arrive.”

The 135-room Hotel ICON will use GuestWare to build a personalized profile for each guest. Each profile will include the guest’s preferences, visit history, past incidents and requests. 

“GuestWare’s flexibility in creating unlimited preferences and tailored profiles by guest makes this a perfect fit for the Hotel ICON,” says Mike Benjamin, vice president of Diversified Computer Corp., maker of GuestWare. “Everything about this hotel is uniquely luxurious. GuestWare will help the staff deliver the same high level of service.” 

Guest historian collects preferences

Hotel ICON is unique in that it has a guest historian stationed in the lobby of its hotel. It is that person’s job, as well as the concierge’s, to collect guest preference information. With GuestWare, those preferences will be logged and referenced the next time a guest stays at the property.

Bennett says Hotel ICON also will use GuestWare to track the preferences of its restaurant and bar patrons, some of whom may not be overnight visitors at the hotel. 

“Someone may have a preference for a no salt or low carb meal,” Bennett says. “Because of GuestWare, we will be able to know that preference the next time that guest makes a reservation.”

Hotel ICON will use GuestWare’s Guest Recognition system to identify its repeat guests. GuestWare will automatically build and maintain a clean database of the hotel’s repeat guests using data from its PMS. 

“Guest Recognition is also a tool we will use as we develop our guest loyalty program,” says Jason Tyson, director of operations at Hotel ICON. 

GuestWare’s Incident Tracking system will allow Hotel ICON personnel to compile a record of every guest incident, request or problem. 

“Incident reports generated out of GuestWare will help ensure that all incidents are resolved in a timely manner.” Benjamin says. “The reports also can be used to identify and eliminate recurring incidents.” 

Houston’s hot spot shines

Opened just 10 days before this year’s Super Bowl in Houston, Hotel ICON quickly has become a popular spot for high-end business and leisure travelers.

“We host a lot of business and board meetings during the week,” Tyson says. “Our weekends have been fantastic. Seventy-five percent of our weekend guests live within 100 miles of downtown Houston.”

Residents in the Houston vicinity have been drawn to Hotel ICON’s personalized approach to luxury, the building’s unique architecture, its signature Jean-Georges BANK restaurant, Rande Gerber’s Whiskey Bar and BALANCE day SPA.

“Every experience a guest has in our hotel is unique and different,” Bennett says.

With GuestWare, Hotel ICON will be able to distinguish itself even more as the most unique place to stay in southern Texas. 

“GuestWare will enhance our ability to wrap our arms around our guests and create memorable moments for them” Tyson says. “That will result in repeat business.”

About Hotel ICON: 
The 135-room Hotel ICON, a member of Preferred Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc., is downtown Houston’s newest luxury hotel. Originally built in 1911 for the Union National Bank, the renovated 12-story property is managed by Benchmark Hospitality, The Woodlands, Texas. Hotel ICON’s restaurants include the BANK by Jean-George and the Wine Vault. The Whiskey, the hotel’s bar by bar aficionado Rande Gerber, and BALANCED Day SPA, the property’s luxurious spa center, offer guests ample opportunities to unwind. For more information about Hotel ICON, go to www.hotelicon.com or call (713) 224-4266.

About GuestWare:
GuestWare, Customer Relationship Management software for the lodging industry, is developed, marketed, implemented and supported by Diversified Computer Corp., Seattle. GuestWare is installed in more than 700 hotels worldwide. For more information about GuestWare, go to www.guestware.com, or contact Mike Benjamin at (888) 504-8378.




Mike Benjamin
Vice President, Sales

Troy Bennett, Managing Director
Hotel ICON
(713) 224-4266
E-mail: tbennett@benchmarkmanagement.com

Glenn Hasek
Hasek Communications
(216) 476-9663

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