Hospitality Professionals Discuss Important Industry Issues and Witness the Revival of New Orleans at HFTP’s March Club and Hotel Controllers Conference

  • Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP)
  • 03.30.07
Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals’ (HFTP®) Club and Hotel Controllers Conference, held March
19-20 at The Ritz-Carlton Hotel in New Orleans, gave hospitality professionals the opportunity to discuss important issues in the industry and network with colleagues.

The Club and Hotel Controllers Conference, the first of two identical conferences held in 2007, also gave attendees the chance to tour New Orleans and observe the reconstruction of the city after Hurricane Katrina.

The conference featured education sessions that focused on essential club- and hotel-specific topics. It included two general information sessions with professional speaker, Roz Trieber’s session, “Hospitality LiteR - One-Third Less Stress, Same Great Job,” and attorney, Phillip Maltin’s session, “How Not to Get Sued: 10 Rules That Keep Employers Out of Trouble,” as well as two industry-specific tracks, one for clubs and one for hotels.

“Once again, the Club and Hotel Controllers Conference proved to be a valuable setting to reveal current industry hot topics,” said Cheryl Brennan, CHAE, controller with Bloomfield Hills Country Club. “The networking opportunities, combined with the educational sessions, made it impossible for attendees to walk away from the conference without having improved their lives in some way. In addition, the New Orleans chapter did an outstanding job in promoting their city.”

HFTP’s New Orleans chapter hosted a complimentary tour on March 18 of local areas affected by Hurricane Katrina. The tour visited shelters, like the Superdome; devastated areas near the major levee breaches; St.
Bernard Parish; and Musicians’ Village, an area of newly constructed cottages built by volunteers and using donations to entice local artists and musicians to return to New Orleans. The tour ended with a private reception at the Bourbon Orleans Hotel.

The tour allowed attendees to gain an understanding of the magnitude of the Hurricane Katrina devastation and demonstrated the importance of the city, the rebuilding progress and the hospitality of a city eager for the return of conventions and tourism.

“The tour the New Orleans chapter provided of the Hurricane Katrina areas was unbelievable,” said Lisa Funk, CPA, CHAE, project manager with MTM Luxury Lodging and a director on the HFTP International Board.
“After seeing all the devastation you might expect the people of New Orleans to be bitter and yet all I experienced, from the front desk staff at The Ritz-Carlton to the staff at the local restaurants, was absolute pride in where they are now. They showed the true definition of hospitality - to restore.”

HFTP, which produces several conferences annually, has held numerous events in New Orleans in the past. Immediately after Hurricane Katrina, the association looked to help the city’s hospitality industry regain its strength and scheduled the 2007 March Club and Hotel Controllers Conference. The conference was the first upcoming, non-contracted meeting that HFTP could reserve after the hurricane hit the area.

The second Club and Hotel Controllers Conference, with an identical program, will be co-located with HITEC® 2007 (Hospitality Industry Technology Exposition and Conference). It will be held June 26-27 at the Orange County Convention Center in Orlando, Fla. Registration for the June Club and Hotel Controllers Conference includes a ticket to the HITEC welcome reception on June 26 and an exhibits pass for June 26-28.

In addition to the expected 300+ companies exhibiting, the 2007 exhibit hall will feature a special club technology pavilion with hands-on displays of the latest in club technology from companies like Jonas, ClubSoft and more. Also, returning to HITEC is GUESTROOM 2010, a model hotel room showcasing the most current and near-future guestroom technology.

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