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Siegel Sez

March 07, 2013

Siegel Sez

by: Richard Siegel

Rich Travels to Germany to Attend ITB Berlin 2013

Berlin - eine Stadt mit Weltgeschichte! Wer denkt nicht als erstes an die Mauer, wenn er an Berlin denkt? Checkpoint Charlie - der wohl bekannteste Ost/West-Grenzübergang wo viele bei Fluchtversuchen aus dem Osten ihr Leben riskierten...

Yes, when in Rome do as the Romans. Or in my case, when in Berlin, do as the Germans and speak German which has not been easy for me. I am writing this Siegel Sez from ITB Berlin, an event like no other anywhere in the world. ITB Berlin is the world's largest trade show for the travel industry. (http://www.itb-berlin.de/en/AboutITBBerlin/) Anybody who wants Europeans to visit their country is exhibiting at ITB including Discover America. Every major hotel company is here and the technology side is very well represented. I have bumped into Frank Wolfe from HFTP, Doug Rice from HTNG, industry consultant John Burns who focuses on the travel space along with many others from the United States. There are many technology vendors exhibiting at ITB Berlin and most have told me they will be at HITEC (http://www.hitec.org) in Minneapolis in June. I took advantage of my new iPad® mini and recorded many mini-interviews with those from around the technology world. I asked about their experiences here in Berlin and at ITB. We will post them on http://www.hospitalityupgrade.com/HUtube-Videos/ as soon as I return. I also spent nearly an hour with the new president and CEO at MICROS Systems, Inc., Peter Altabef. That was an interesting experience for both of us, but hopefully very positive for Peter as it was for me. While at the MICROS booth I ran into Dietmar Muller, the creator of the Fidelio Property Management System that was later sold to MICROS Systems in the late ‘90s. It is funny after all these years he still follows what is going on with what he refers to as his baby. It was a great conversation that I have recorded for our website. For years I have been told that I needed to experience ITB and I am glad that this year I could. I have two more days to get through this miniature city that has about 15 buildings of exhibits. I am looking forward to making it through all the exhibits and then soaking my feet for a week.

Before I left for ITB our whole group at Hospitality Upgrade spent time at the HTNG Annual Conference in Atlanta, which according to CEO Doug Rice was the best attended in many years. There was a great deal of positive feedback about the sessions this year. I also agree with that feedback as my knowledge of the world of wireless and the future of mobile definitely took a step up. Kylie McKlveen from Hospitality Upgrade is writing about the sessions and that will also be on our website. I strongly encourage you to read her recap. (http://www.hospitalityupgrade.com/_news/showNewsDetail.asp?docID=5996)

I return home next week for one week and then travel to Fort Lauderdale for our Executive Vendor Summit. This is definitely one of the industry’s unique events where over 40 CEO types will leave their egos at home and discuss the many challenges that face the industry. Of course many unique partnerships are also formed at this event, but this industry succeeds when complimentary technology companies work closer together. It makes me a bit nervous knowing so many competitors will be on airboats at Thursday evening’s social event as we go searching for alligators in the Florida everglades. It might be tempting, but hopefully everyone will resist the temptation. Time will tell.

Here now is the real reason we are here, Jon Inge’s review of all the industry technology happenings from the last few weeks. I will see you at the end with this week’s attempt at you-know-what.


Technology NEWSSTAND

by: Jon Inge
Systems News in Plain English from Jon Inge


- Data-driven decisions are good, but not enough for effective leadership.
One of the paradoxes of living in a data-driven management world is that while we have no trouble generating enough of the stuff to drown us all, we’re never entirely sure how accurate or relevant it is, nor how to implement the decisions we base on it.

We’ve become pretty good at consolidating data from the many different management systems usually found on property, and are familiar with the advantages of integrated systems that reduce the amount of data translation between systems, but we need to remember the assumptions that are always made when data is recorded in the first place. Context is critical, as when a guest’s requested room isn’t available and the room she actually stayed in is interpreted as her preference. IT consultant Bob Lewis recalls an analysis of a print shop that identified that the most modern and fastest machine actually produced the most errors and took the longest time, which sounded problematic until someone pointed out that it was always given the most difficult jobs to do.

Peter Drucker said that one of the most important responsibilities of a manager is to know when he has enough information to act. You can always conduct more research, check in with someone else’s opinion or add ever more detailed refinements to the information you already have, but at some point it’s just noise. Gathering more of it isn’t going to increase the accuracy, and it just distracts you from the decision you need to make. Business intelligence tools can help by identifying trends amongst all the disparate data points, but then what are you going to do about it?

Sometimes it’s straightforward; this type of guest typically books that type of package at this time of year, so sending such guests a good offer at the right time is likely to be rewarding. On the other hand, even if you identify how the business patterns of the property are shifting, or why some departments are more efficient than others, you still have to decide what action to take, and how to change the way the organization operates to take advantage of it. That’s the other key responsibility of a manager; even if you have all the data in the world, you still need to set a goal and know how to lead people to change in order to achieve it.



- André Menegazzi hired by hetras as sales manager
- Bernard Ellis joins Infor as vice president industry strategy – hospitality
- Brad Gerstner joins board of directors at Duetto Research
- Scott Little returns to MSI as vice president of operations
- Mark Loyd promoted to chief strategy officer at MSI
- Joe Hyman joins HSMAI Americas Region Board of Directors
- Robert Arnold joins HSMAI Digital Marketing Advisory Board
- Don Hay named to HSMAI Americas Region Board of Directors
- Michael Thomas hired by Swisscom Hospitality as director of professional services
- Gwen Purtell joins Swisscom Hospitality as director of business development, major accounts
- Martin Chua hired by ZDirect as director of sales in Asia Pacific
- eRevMax recruits eight additional sales managers worldwide
- Mike Kistner named a member of the board of directors at RezNext
- Alex Alt promoted to president and general manager at Sabre Hospitality Solutions
- Kelli O'Dell joins The Knowland Group as national sales director, professional business development
- Cindy Estis Green joins Knowland’s board of directors
- Craig Barnby joins Pegasus Solutions as vice president, product services
For more information on People on the Move for 03/07/13


- Aducco Hotels in Romania standardizes on hetras
- Stare Miasto, Krakow, Poland, selects hetras
- Legacy Hotel, Louisville, Ky., relocates Maestro GMS to cloud
- Northern Hotel, Billings, Mont., picks Maestro GMS in cloud-based configuration
- The Ascott Limited implements protel's MPE chainwide through Xn Hotel Systems
- Dolce’s Aspen Meadows Resort implements first beta of MICROS’ OPERA 9 Front Desk Mobile
For more information on Guest Management Systems for 03/07/13


- MICROS releases interface to Google applications
- Mobile Media Applications and Protel release Ustay+ mobile booking app for MICROS’ Fidelio Suite 8
- Hotel Chinzanso Tokyo switches to Pegasus Solutions for global distribution and sales support

For more information on Reservations for 03/07/13


- Serenata now provides Nor1's end-to-end upsell platform as part of @mail email marketing service
- Louvre Hotels Group implementing Nor1 at all current and future hotels
- Loews Hotels & Resorts adds Nor1 at all 19 properties
- TravelClick receives eight Adrian Awards
- Digital Alchemy announces B&B eCRM
- Lodging Interactive creates Facebook Widget to link comments from hotel website to its Facebook page
- Lodging Interactive announces eNewsletter monthly newsletter service
- First Hospitality Group installs ProfitSword’s Financial Suite and ProfitPlan across 30 sites
- Newmarket now resells New Media Hospitality’s marketing services
- Amsterdam Hospitality picks Guestfolio to manage pre and post-stay communications with guests
- CoCo Key Hotel and Water Resort implements Flip.to
- Richfield Hospitality picks Vizergy for digital marketing
- Milestone Internet Marketing receives three Adrian Awards
For more information on Marketing/Management for 03/07/13


- JJW Hotels picks eRevMax’s RateTiger for 23 hotels
- Louvre Hotel Group picks RateTiger’s enterprise connectivity for Premiere Class, Campanile and Kyriad brands
- Zanadu selects SiteMinder’s Room Distribution Exchange
- PPHE Hotel Group signs with IDeaS for art'otel and Park Plaza Hotels & Resorts portfolios
For more information on Revenue Management for 03/07/13


- Lanyon releases integration with Salesforce.com
- Hyatt Regency Santa Clara contracts with Blue Jeans Network for HD video conferencing
- Westin Harbour Castle deploys ElevenBC Mac® computers for guest use in lobby
- Hotel Minneapolis deploys ElevenBC for Mac in business center
- TTI Technologies International appoints Aero Information Technology as reseller in Spain
- Presidian Hotels and Resorts installs hotel SalesPro throughout portfolio
- hotel SystemsPro enhances hotel SalesPro Mobile
- The Knowland Group announces new product features for mobile platform
- Newmarket® announces latest editions of Delphi 2013 and Delphi+, featuring N2GO mobile app
- Colwen Hotels to deploy Delphi.fdc across 23 properties
- Las Vegas Sands deploying QuickMobile’s SnapApp
For more information on Sales & Catering, Meeting Planning for 03/07/13


- Kirkwood Mountain Resort selects Agilysys’ InfoGenesis POS
- Galla POS develops platform for tablet-enabled menus and billing
- Capton announces enhanced reporting and analytics
- InterContinental Hotels Group selects MICROS’ Simphony Enterprise POS for 61 U.K. hotels
For more information on F&B/Point of Sale for 03/07/13


- PAR Springer-Miller adds seamless integration with Digital Alchemy to SpaSoft
PAR Springer-Miller has added seamless integration with Digital Alchemy to its SpaSoft Spa and Activity Management System. By pulling guest data automatically and directly from SpaSoft, Digital Alchemy allows spas to customize pre and post-stay communications, including confirmation emails and amenity upselling as well as post-visit satisfaction feedback features. Messaging can be tailored based on the services booked, day of week, guest history and more. http://www.Data2Gold.com, http://www.springermiller.com


- Quadriga’s Personal Media Network™ mobile application wins HTNG’s Most Innovative Technology Award 2012
- Jupiter Hotels upgrading Quadriga Genesis to offer tiered bandwidth guest Wi-Fi in all 26 properties
- Electric Mirror introduces Vive Bluetooth-enabled mirror
- Intelity expands ICE to include 35 guest services and to offer 35 integrations with other management applications
- Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills releases ICE-based app for guests’ mobile devices
- FCS Computer Systems adds OpenWays integration to i-Guest self-service mobile application
- TeleAdapt launches new MediaHub SL Desktop connectivity panel
- Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, Atlantic City, first U.S. casino to offer in-room gambling over guestroom TV
- Preferred Hotel Group names SmarTV Company to Alliance Partner Program
- Sama-Sama Hotel Kuala Lumpur International Airport installs Bartech's minibars in 442 guestrooms
- Holiday Inn Express Kennedy Airport installs Flyte Systems’ FlyteBoard
- The May Fair hotel in London implements Cardola’s VirtualHotel app on iPads® in each room
For more information on Guest Services for 03/07/13


- HTNG announces Secure Payments Framework for Hospitality
- InterContinental Buckhead Atlanta installs InvoTech Systems’ UHF-RFID Linen System
- Aptech announces orders from four hotel companies representing 17 properties
- BCD Travel lets a company’s preferred suppliers establish automated feeds into Taxeo for VAT recovery
For more information on Back Office for 03/07/13


- Ruckus Wireless launches dual-band concurrent ZoneFlex 7055 Wi-Fi wall switch
- Hotel Med Park deploying Metropolis Technologies’ ProfitWatch Call Accounting system
- Marriott certifies iBAHN under 2013 GPNS for full-service properties
- Kempinski Hotels awarded HTNG/EHL 2012 EMEA Hotel Technology Innovators Award for deployment of Du's Managed Hospitality solution in partnership with Reivernet
For more information on Communications/Infrastructure for 03/07/13


- Hotel Porta Fira Santos, Barcelona runs NFC lock pilot test using ASSA ABLOY Seos app, Vingcard Signature RFID locks and Sony Xperia T phones
- Hotel Bristol, Vienna installs Vingcard’s Essence invisible door locks
The 320-room Hotel Porta Fira Santos in Barcelona implemented ASSA ABLOY’s Seos application and NFC-compatible Vingcard Signature RFID electronic door locks, along with Sony Xperia T NFC-enabled phones, to allow event staff to use their phones for room access during this year’s MobileWorld Congress in Barcelona. The trial participants, roaming from their home O2 UK operator, received digital room keys directly to their handsets, held securely in the Seos applet in the phones’ G&D NFC SIM cards. Access was then granted by touching the handset to the Signature RFID door lock reader. The Seos ecosystem consists of interoperable electromechanical locks and readers, mobile phone applications, a secure digital key delivery mechanism and a trusted service manager (TSM). These elements support issuing, delivering and revoking digital keys on NFC-enabled mobile devices.

The 150-room Hotel Bristol in Vienna has installed Vingcard’s Essence door locks. Essence is a minimalist design that encases all electronic components inside the door to make the access devices practically invisible to hotel guests. Seos hotelbarcelonaportafira.com/en, http://www.bristolvienna.com, http://www.vingcardelsafe.com


And now for you-know-what…

A new cop pulled over a speeder who was zipping down Maple Avenue. "Can I see your license and registration," the cop asked.

"But officer," the fellow started, "I can explain..."

"Shut your trap, bub," snapped the officer. "You're going downtown and sit a while until the Sarge gets back."

The man protested, "But, officer, I think you really should know..."

"And I said to shut your trap,” the officer snapped. “You're going to jail!"

A few hours later the cop looked in on his prisoner and said, "Lucky for you the Sarge is at his daughter's wedding. He'll be in a good mood when he gets back."

"Don't count on it," said the man. "I'm the groom."

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