News for the Hospitality Executive
|by Bob Davis
In spite of the dismal national economic picture, many wonderful developments continue to take place in the hospitality industry throughout Volusia County.
In Daytona Beach Shores,the former Inn on the Beach in is now a popular Holiday Inn Resort and the property next door is being renovated and will pick up the Clarion brand. A little further south, the former Palm Plaza Resort completed a major renovation and reopened as a Holiday Inn Express & Suites. Nearby, future plans indicate the Islander will transition to a Hyatt Hotel and the Surfside Inn will be a part of the Marriott family of brands.
In the Daytona Beach area, the Boardwalk Inn & Suites, at the foot of International Speedway Boulevard, is slated for a major renovation and the Super 8 Motel on Ocean Avenue is under new ownership and is in the process of being renovated. In the Daytona Beach business/university district, the Suburban Extended Stay has changed ownership and is being renovated while the Marriott Courtyard Inn has just completed an extensive redesign of both rooms and public space. In the Beach Street area, the Live Oaks Inn Bed and Breakfast has new owners and upgrades to the property are underway. Also, in the Beach Street area,the Rossmeyer family is moving forward with their plans for an upscale retail store combined with a museum which is schedule to be open in time for Bike Week 2012.
In the Ormond Beach area, the oceanfront Mainsail Inn is slated to become a Days Inn while The Lotus, an upscale boutique hotel, continues with a complete redesign of the Jamaican Inn. The grand Floridian, a timeshare opened a new tower in Feb, 2011
In order to be successful, it is important for hotel operators to continually upgarde their level of service. Those reporting upgrades include The Bahama House, Best Western Aku Tiki, Emerald Shores Hotel, Perry's Ocean Edge, and The Shores Resort and Spa in Daytona Beach Shores. The same applies to properties located in the Ormond Beach area and include the Best Western Castillo Del Sol and The Cove on Ormond Beach. In our central tourism area of Daytona Beach, The City of daytona Beach and the County of Volusia are working hard to revitalized the "E-Zone" which emcompasses a number of businesses in the area of the Ocean Center. Throughout the Daytona Beach area, new upgrades continue in properties such as the Hilton Daytona Beach Oceanfront, Daytona Beach Resort and Conference Center, LaQuinta Oceanfront Inn, Residence Inn, Hilton Garden Inn, Comfort Suites (ISB), and the Homewood Suites.
Renovations, upgrades and new hotel development are all part of the engine which provides much needed jobs for area contractors and service providers. It is not, however, all about bricks and mortar and our industry is driven by the fine people who work in it. The Hotel & Lodging Association of Volusia County recently held it's annual employee appreciation luncheon in which many were recognized for providing exemplary service to our visitors. At urging of HLA member, Dan Francatti of the Daytona Beach Kennel Club, a new "feel good" program wa initiated whereby we recognize the efforts of our employees every single week of the year, based upon comments made by our visitors. The association also provides scholarships for the hospitality programs at Bethune Cookman University and Daytona State College.
The hospitality industry is an enormous economic engine for Volusia County and provides 37,000 jobs countywide with a payroll exceeding 4.6 Million
The HLA continues to work hand in glove with the Daytona Beach Area Convention and Visitors Bureau to assist in attracting visitors to our area. This year the C V B under the guidance of the Halifax Area Advertising Authority will spend several million dollars in an effort to help stimulate the local economy through visitor spending. It is important to note that no general tax revenue is committed to tourism promotion and the primary source of funding is a dedicated visitor tax collected by the area lodging establishments on overnight stays. Another important facet of tourism, is that for every dollar spent to rent a room in Volusia County .21c goes to rental of a room, .27c goes for shopping. The remainder .52c goes for food, gasoline and amusements. Total of one dollar $1.00.
Hotel & Lodging Association of
CEO / President