Evaluating Housekeeping in Minutes per Room

Larry Mogelonsky | February 20, 2019

By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng. ( While you may know your operations so thoroughly that you can trust your intuition to prudently guide your next move, we have now found ourselves in the age of measurement and analytics, letting us fall back on the data to make sound inferences to hone each and every task. Just as you would evaluate your rooms in terms of RevPAR or your guests in terms of RevPAG, there's another metric for your housekeeping department that can help give a reliable snapshot of the current state and where improvements are needed. As many executive housekeepers and management companies that already use...

Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 209: Hotel History: The Americana of New York (1962)

Stanley Turkel | February 19, 2019

by Stanley Turkel, CMHS Hotel History: The Americana of New York The Americana of New York opened on September 25, 1962 as a 2,000-room convention hotel. It was constructed by brothers Laurence Tisch and Preston Tisch, co-owners of the Loews Corporation and was the first over 1,000-room hotel to be built in New York since the Waldorf Astoria in 1931. With 51 floors, it was acclaimed for many years in its advertising and by the media as the tallest hotel in the world, based on the number and height of its inhabited floors. The Americana was built, along with the New York Hilton facing Sixth Avenue on the next block, to serve the huge num...

Three Things Entrepreneurs and Business Owners Can Learn From Hospitality

Samuel Wich | February 15, 2019

By Samuel Wich #1 - Hire the right people and treat them appropriately Whenever an employee is in contact with a customer, this presents an opportunity to leave a great impression in that customer's mind. No matter if it's at a fast food restaurant, drive-through or at the counter of a high-end bank. Companies should focus on hiring people who naturally enjoy being in front of customers and who love putting smiles on people's faces. Aside from a new hire's background and technical ability, their willingness to go above and beyond to satisfy a customer should come at the top of the list in recruitment efforts. Although technical skills a...

Artificial Intelligence: Hospitality, and That Human Touch

Stuart Pallister | February 13, 2019

By Stuart Pallister Artificial intelligence is undoubtedly going to have an impact on the hotel industry as the bots – robots and chatbots – play a greater role. Julia Aymonier, CIO of EHL, says yes, some jobs will change, particularly those related to repetitive tasks. "The biggest challenge," she told Hospitality Insights in an interview, "will be to train people for jobs that are created by artificial intelligence." Robot-concierge? "There will be jobs, and if we don't train people, we won't have the staff we need to do these new jobs." We're unlikely to see robot concierges in four- and five-star hotels, as you can't hav...

Every Cloud Has a Silver Lining… but for Whom?

Georges Panayotis | February 13, 2019

Fostering, supervising, regulating, preserving the common heritage... these are the main missions of governments and agencies that must take them to heart. Create, develop, design, innovate, know your market, benchmark... these are the missions of the sector's professionals whom governments must trust in order to know how to act in order to preserve their market share. One might be tempted to step on others' turf. "However, it is by assuming each of our well-defined roles and by pushing the expertise, know-how and knowledge ever further that we will build a solid and sustainable tourism strategy." Through debate, by ch...

Why Retail Owners Are Partnering With Hotels

Jim Butler | February 13, 2019

By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group® Hotel Lawyers | Authors of 13 February 2019 - Recently, my partner, Guy Maisnik, and I spoke about hotel retail mixed-use development with Kelsi Maree Borland of Her article, Why Retail Owners Are Partnering With Hotels ran with the subtitle, With retail evolving to be more experience-driven, retail owners are finding the benefits of adding boutique hotels to shopping centers. Retailers adding hotels to the mix is nothing new – but they may be more motivated than ever. The Hotel Law Blog has been covering hotel mixed-use projects — where th...

The Hidden Benefits of Tasting Events

Larry Mogelonsky | February 13, 2019

By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng. ( Finding myself away at a mountain resort for a food and wine festival last year, it was the perfect opportunity to not only participate in a wine tasting conducted by a vintner from a prominent Oregon winery as well as reflect upon the staying power of these types of events. For the two dozen participants, it was a chance to get close and personal with the wine. Here, we were guided through the nuances of several wines of the same grape variety, allowing us to understand the nuances created by the vintage and cellaring processes as well as furthering our knowledge and appreciation o...

Managing Overtourism

Peter Varga | February 12, 2019

By Peter Varga and Aline Terrier What, for you, makes an ideal vacation? Being alone in a beautiful spot or sharing the experience with loved ones? More likely than not you prefer to avoid the 'madding' crowd but you may already have had first-hand experience of the increasing numbers of tourists visiting major destinations such as Machu Picchu, Angkor Wat, the Taj Mahal and Venice. Growth in tourism: facts and figures According to the latest statistics from the United Nations World Tourism Organisation: International tourist arrivals rose by six percent to 1.4 billion in 2018, the second strongest year since 2010. UNWTO expects the num...

Merchandizing Romantic Getaways

Larry Mogelonsky | February 6, 2019

By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng. ( As we slide into February, the traditional low occupancy winter blues for hotels (outside of the sun destinations) is punctured by the healthy returns netted from Valentine's Day couples' getaways. While standard articles might focus on ways to drum up last minute purchases through packaging and promotional efforts, the next step is to ask yourself: how to capture more incremental revenue before guests arrive? The concept here is to maximize the profits from each customer so that this romantic time of year becomes a truly fantastic cash grab. And a great way to achieve this goal is ...

Going Beyond Transactions: ‘Conversational Commerce’ and Its Impact on the Travel and Hospitality Industry

Alan Young | February 6, 2019

Coined by Uber's Chris Messina, consumer demand for digital-centric interactions with hotel and travel brands is on the rise By Alan E. Young, Puzzle Partner It's 2019, and I would argue that there have never been more marketing-related "buzzwords" battling it out for conversational real-estate across thought leadership articles, webinars, white papers and more. Whether it's agile marketing, catering to the 'age of the consumer,' hyper-personalization, or the mobile age — there are plenty of commerce-related silos to get lost in as industry leaders seek out the trends and methods which can best benefit their respective brand a...

Luxury Hospitality and the Risk of Obsolescence

Stuart Pallister | February 4, 2019

By Stuart Pallister Luxury hospitality is at risk of becoming obsolete, according to PwC Global industry leader for hospitality and tourism, Nicolas Mayer. That's because it no longer fulfills the 'needs and desires' of clients that they couldn't get elsewhere. Mayer told EHL students recently in classroom sessions that, in decades gone by, luxury had involved 'standard expectations' about security, beautiful surroundings and service levels that guests were willing to pay for. Whereas now, this brand promise and standardization, this consistency promise, doesn't need to be obtained from a luxury operator anymore. You can get it online a...

Hotel Lawyer: Brand Franchise Owners Ask “What Happened to My Area of Protection?”

Jim Butler | January 31, 2019

By Jim Butler and the Global Hospitality Group® Hotel Lawyers | Authors of Hotel Lawyer on Owners' concerns with hotel brand franchise agreements — Areas of Protection or Non-competition clauses My partner Bob Braun is a senior member of our Global Hospitality Group® and has experience with many hundreds of hotel management and franchise agreements. Bob is also co-author of the Hotel Management Agreement & Franchise Agreement Handbook (3rd edition), and has first-hand experience with branding and management for every major traditional hotel brand, including a number of multi-branded properties. Tod...

Ten Marketing Questions for Q1 2019

Larry Mogelonsky | January 30, 2019

By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng. ( Now that we are making headway into 2019, it's time to re-evaulate the budgets you devised last quarter and see if you are indeed on the best course for the year ahead. This process can be quite rewarding if you have a clear vision of where you want to take your hotel for beyond the current fiscal cycle. The key is to plan for a gradual and continuous change, and the first step towards this is to align with your team. As for the coming year, it is definitely not business as usual. There are disruptors lurking in the dark alleys of the travelsphere, and if you aren't careful you'll s...

Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 208: Hotel History: Grand Hotel (1887) Mackinac Island, Michigan

Stanley Turkel | January 29, 2019

by Stanley Turkel, CMHS Hotel History: Grand Hotel The "Grand" as it is called on the island, is a historic coastal resort with a spectacular 660-foot long, three-story high porch. Below this covered veranda is a manicured lawn sloping down to a formal flower garden where 10,000 geraniums bloom in season among other flower beds with wild blossoms. The hotel is located on Mackinac Island which is in the straits between Lake Michigan and Lake Huron. It has thrived because of an important decision made in the 1920s. All private cars and trucks were outlawed on the island which gives visitors a chance to live in a village without...

Who Will Benefit From the Digitization of the Hotel Industry?

Georges Panayotis | January 28, 2019

By Georges Panayotis We have fully entered a new era. What was once a craft industry has now become an industry that is highly specialized in many fields. These changes are exciting and gratifying. Why? Because they make the players in this business future experts in digital technology and marketing, and they push us to go ever further in product design, customer relations and the range of services we can offer them. The notions of the "money back guarantee", "exchangeable product" and sales were invented at Le Bon Marché department store. Nearly 200 years later, Black Friday has become a global institution, a...

Drawbacks to Outsourcing Your Hotel Labor Force

Larry Mogelonsky | January 23, 2019

By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng. ( The growing prevalence of outsourced labor within the frontline ranks of many guest-facing departments may have deep-rooted consequences that aren't immediately discernable on a balance sheet. Whether your property is thinking of contracting out its valets, bellhops, restaurant servers, banqueting staff or housekeepers, what we stand to lose may be far greater than any apparent cost savings or reductions in employee benefit packages. While the two abovementioned advantages of outsourcing are indeed quite lucrative – and not to mention the overall decrease in risk involved with...

What Corked Wine Teaches You About Service Excellence

Larry Mogelonsky | January 16, 2019

By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng. ( There's an important lesson in the form of what corked bottles – that is, wine that's gone off – can present as an opportunity to wow your restaurant patrons and hotel guests. For all of my fellow oenophiles out there, it's one of the worst feelings in the world. You pop open a bottle, pour yourself a glass, take a sip and your mouth is hit by a musty, astringent splash that eviscerates any lingering flavors. The wine is skunked and utterly worthless. This lesson all comes down to one of the hallmarks of a service culture in that it's not just about how well you provide ...

Limited and Select Service Hotels: 5 Ways Your Front Desk Staff Can Increase Direct Bookings and Cut Distribution Costs

Doug Kennedy | January 15, 2019

By Doug Kennedy Like all segments of the hotel industry, limited and select service hotels are seeing distribution costs eating away at top-line profits. Of course OTA's and other third parties are important to the channel mix. However, the colleague at your front desk right now can be your hotel's best resource for increasing the most profitable of all channels, which is of course your direct bookings. Not only do reservations that are made directly have the lowest acquisition costs, but they also tend to have a higher ADR. The following are some action steps and then five training tips for your segment of the lodging industry. Action ...

You Can’t Get Anything for Twenty Bucks These Days

Georges Panayotis | January 10, 2019

By Georges Panayotis While we've been relatively spared the hardship of winter's cold weather, 2019 has nevertheless sprung up. So what should we wish for? What do you want? Let's get to work and act, find the strength and the means to join forces, move forward and progress together. Let us not look back because what is done is done, but let us try not to repeat the same mistakes and let us try to make the most of the assets we have. But who is looking after leisure tourists? "We shall not forget that the international symbols of Paris are the Eiffel Tower and the Champs Elysées - not La Défense and the ...

General Managers: Bridging the Gap Between Hotel Owners and Operators

Demian Hodari, Ph.D. | January 9, 2019

By Demian Hodari, Michael Turner and Michael Sturman In the final article in a three-part series on the evolving relationship between hotel owners and operators, EHL professor Demian Hodari and his co-researchers explore how general managers can help bridge the divide between owners and operators. In our previous articles in this series, we provided evidence from our research that owners are actively involved in property-level decisions, even when these are governed by hotel management agreements that formally prevent or limit their involvement. Furthermore, we demonstrated that such hotels achieve greater performance when their owners ...

Free WiFi as the Easy 2019 Goal

Larry Mogelonsky | January 9, 2019

By Larry Mogelonsky, MBA, P. Eng. ( As now is the time for New Year's resolutions, let's start off with a 'low hanging fruit' – an easy victory that will resonate strongly with any guest no matter the travel modality. But first, to show you how much times have changed and why this is an important project, we need only compare two frequently asked questions posed to the front desk. Whereas, "Do you have free WiFi?" was common a decade ago, nowadays this is more likely to be, "What's the WiFi password?" If you understand the difference, then you already know what that means as it concerns guest expectations. The l...

Nobody Asked Me, But… No. 207: Hotel History in Brooklyn, N.Y.:  Hotel Bossert (1909) and St. George Hotel (1885)

Stanley Turkel | January 9, 2019

by Stanley Turkel, CMHS Hotel History in Brooklyn, N.Y.: Hotel Bossert and St. George Hotel The Hotel Bossert was built in 1909 by Louis Bossert, a Brooklyn lumber magnate, as a residential hotel in Brooklyn Heights. The historic 14-story, 224-room hotel, once referred to as the "Waldorf-Astoria of Brooklyn," was owned by the Jehovah's Witnesses since 1984. The Brooklyn Dodgers celebrated their first and last World Series championship when they beat the New York Yankees in 1955. In the lobby of the Hotel Bossert, delirious Dodger fans celebrated by singing "For He's A Jolly Good Fellow" for Walter Alston, the Dodger's manager. Jackie Ro...

Paid, Owned and Earned Media: What Matters Most for B2B Travel and Hotel Tech Brands in 2019?

Alan Young | January 8, 2019

By Alan E. Young In a marketing landscape where content is king, you might think it's just a matter of creating and distributing great content. After all, if great content is what every consumer craves from the brands they favor, delivering it should be the easy part — right? But in fact, that's not the case at all. While content is undeniably an integral piece of any modern marketing strategy, business leaders are quick to realize that the curation of valuable and timely content is only half the battle. Back in the day, big brands had to buy an ad or film a TV commercial to get their product in front of their target market. In to...

2019 Top 10 Hospitality Trends

Philippe Masset | January 7, 2019

By Philippe Masset and Jean-Philippe Weisskopf The hospitality industry has been undergoing tremendous changes and disruptions over the last two decades.What key trends have been steadily reshaping the industry and where is hospitality heading in the near future? A study conducted among EHL faculty in the fall of 2018 provides insights on past and new challenges (as well as opportunities) hospitality players need to take into consideration. The TEN trends that have reshaped (and are still reshaping) the industry: #1 - Virtual communities Social networks and in particular TripAdvisor have had a profound impact on customers. This has led ...

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