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Siegel Sez

December 18, 2015

Siegel Sez

by: Richard Siegel

This is that interesting time of the year. If you are a hotelier and your market is the business traveler and/or group meetings then quite often there is not a great deal happening for the next two weeks. If you are a resort or a hotel in the warmer parts of the country you might be gearing up for the busiest week of the year between Christmas and New Year’s Day. But then again, when it is 70 degrees in NYC in mid-December, I wonder how many people are thinking about Florida or the Caribbean. Yes, the weather has been very strange this year. It is the end of the year but I won’t bore you with an industry year in review, I will let the experts do that following this Siegel Sez opening. But with that said, don’t you get a kick out of things like Facebook doing its year in review along with your own personal year in review? Then Google and Yahoo kick in with their top searches for 2015 and it goes on and on. I will let others do that.

For us at Hospitality Upgrade and Hotel Online it was a good year both from a business perspective and fun. We might have the only magazine in the world that grows both in print and online and we thank our partners for that. Both our Executive Vendor Summit and CIO Summit were very well attended and those that joined us just raved about the events, which made us proud. Hotel Online continues to grow and is the most widely read daily email in the industry. We know it is different but our readers keep telling us that they like the format, which is why it is so popular. I have always been a believer that being different is a positive thing.  Yes, it has been a good year and we are very thankful. We ended the year with our holiday party at Topgolf. If you have never tried Topgolf you really should. It is competitive but there is way more laughing than anything else. We are grateful that they opened one less than a mile from our office. A great time was had by all.

But the best thing that happened to end this year was Team Technic. I mentioned in an earlier Siegel Sez that Hospitality Upgrade sponsored four young men between the ages of 8 and 12 in a robotics competition. There were nearly 40 teams from the region competing and guess who won? Yes, Team Technic! I am not sure who was more excited, the boys or Leslie Genske from IHG who managed the team. (Look to the right side of this page at the top to see the team with its first place trophy.) It was a fun, fun day seeing them compete. If you would like to see highlights of the competition, please click here. Congratulations, guys! Yes, hard work can pay off!

Yes, the year is coming to a close. The flurry of mergers and acquisitions might be over but then again there are two weeks left, so who can be sure. Along with the M&A activity both in the hotel side and vendor side there were a great deal of movements by key technology leaders, with another big one soon to be announced. Yes, that pursuit of happiness is a never-ending journey. My pursuit of happiness is a little gal with four legs – remember the name B Three. She won her second race quite easily at Aqueduct Race Track in New York and the future looks very bright. With a great deal of luck who knows, we might finally have a horse running in a big race at Saratoga this summer. Now that is a journey I really would look forward to!

Here now is the real reason we are here, Dan Phillips' review of the technology happenings. Along with the year in review of many of the technologies that impacted the industry. I encourage you to take a few moments and read through these great pieces that some of the industry’s top consultants put together. I will see you at the end with this week’s attempt at you-know-what. Happy holidays!


Technology NEWSSTAND

Recent headlines, from Dan Phillips



There is always someone that supports you, that makes you more successful. In my case, for the purposes of my small contribution to Siegel Sez, it is the staff at Hospitality Upgrade. I have a long-term relationship with Rich and Geneva and all of the HU team. That relationship has taken several different facets over the years, but the one constant has always been their willingness to help me shine a bit brighter than I might have on my own. And, my efforts with putting content together for Siegel Sez each edition is dwarfed by the creativity, dedication and professionalism that people like Kris, Michelle and Katherine extend to me. We all like to give Rich a hard time, and deservedly so, but the one thing he has done so enviously well is to surround himself with the best staff bar none.

Merry Christmas, happy holidays, and a safe, happy and prosperous New Year to all.

I look forward to serving you,

Dan Phillips
Dare to Imagine


- End of Year Review: Digital Marketplace, By Cindy Estis Green
- End of Year Review: Distribution, By John Burns
- End of Year Review: Privacy and Cybersecurity Law, By Risa Boerner and Heather Steele
- End of Year Review: Data Breaches, By Marion Roger
- End of Year Review: Technology, By Jeremy Rock
- Choice Hotels Reveals 2016 American Travel Outlook
- U.S. Travel Predicts Holiday Travelers Will Spend $28.7 Billion
For more information on Top O' the News for 12/18/15


- Leeny Oberg to Succeed Retiring Carl Berquist as Chief Financial Officer for Marriott
- Wyndham Hotel Group Selects Kathy Maher to Lead Global Sales
- Springer-Miller Systems Poised for Growth, Michael McCarthy Named President and CEO
- Jeff Wood Joins GuestTek as New Vice President of Finance - Special Projects
- Hilton Worldwide Creates “All Suites” Category; Names New Leadership with Bill Duncan as Global Head
- Kerzner International Appoints Philippe Zuber as President and Chief Operating Officer for One&Only Resorts
- Aqua-Aston Hospitality Makes Leadership Team Promotions
- Regent Hotels & Resorts Appoints Yvonne Sai Choo Lim Director of Revenue Management
- Starwood Hotels & Resorts Names Thomas B. Mangas CEO
- White Lodging Names Dave Montrose as Senior Vice President of Select Service
- International Society of Hotel Association Executives Names Greg Adkins Chair of Board of Directors
For more information on People on the Move for 12/18/15


- GuestTek and UIEvolution Partner to Offer New Global In-room Entertainment Solution for Hospitality
- DoubleTree by Hilton Introduces Enhanced Amenities Options with "Little Extras Upgrade"
- Mobile Device Charging from Kube Systems in Use at 130 Marriott Properties
- Flyte Systems Adds Custom Mobile Airline Arrival Information for Holiday Inn Washington Dulles
For more information on Guest Services for 12/18/15


- Social Tables to Provide Collaborative Meeting Solutions for Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group
Social Tables to Provide Collaborative Meeting Solutions for Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group
Carlson Rezidor Hotel Group (NASDAQ: REZT), one of the world’s largest and most dynamic hotel chains, has chosen Social Tables, the award-winning, collaborative meeting and event software provider, as a preferred vendor for its current and expanding portfolio of meetings hotels. The introduction of Social Tables’ suite of products brings each of the properties in the Carlson Rezidor portfolio together online with their clients, including the Radisson BLU Hotel Glasgow, Radisson Blu Minneapolis Downtown and Radisson Blu Warwick Hotel. Each property is now supported by Social Tables’ mobile product line, which includes 2-D and 3-D room diagramming and event attendee management, allowing team members to create and manage their events from any location, on any device.
http://www.carlsonrezidor.com, http://www.socialtables.com 


- Menin Hospitality Turns to RoamBOOST for Cell Signal Amplification
Menin Hospitality Turns to RoamBOOST for Cell Signal Amplification
For Menin Hospitality, structural interference and other factors in the surrounding areas of its properties can make it impossible for customers and staff to get good cell reception. Such was the case in May, when development crews and staff of the soon-to-open Red Ginger restaurant couldn’t get a cell signal. Managed by Menin Hospitality, Red Ginger is part of a new construction eight-story, mixed-used facility in Miami’s South Beach area. Upon learning of the cellular coverage problem, the management group immediately dispatched mobile expert, RoamingAround, to install its RoamBOOST Distributed Antenna System (DAS). The modular configuration of RoamBOOST is enabling the development team to activate the DAS as each phase of project completion. 


- AirRevive Completes Refurbishment of Little Rock Marriot's Guestroom A/C Units
- Independent Review Shows Substantial Savings for Commercial Laundries Using Xeros Technology
AirRevive Completes Refurbishment of Little Rock Marriot's Guestroom A/C Units
AirRevive has announced the completion of a guestroom fan coil unit refurbishment project for the Little Rock Marriott. Marriott engaged AirRevive to refurbish the guestroom’s Whalen fan coil units after the $16 million dollar renovation in 2014. The renovation included upgrading the guestrooms to Marriott’s new design. The only former asset remaining was the 35-year-old existing fan coil units. The goal was to improve in-room climate in order to raise guest satisfaction. AirRevive’s site inspection determined the Whalen units could be refurbished to operate and perform as-new, adding 10 years to the asset’s life.
Independent Review Shows Substantial Savings for Commercial Laundries Using Xeros Technology
A review of Xeros polymer bead cleaning technology undertaken by independent laundry industry experts LTC, has demonstrated substantial financial savings for commercial laundries. The review compared conventional laundry processes with the innovative Xeros polymer bead cleaning technology for reclaim, where polymer beads are used in the washing process with water, to remove ingrained staining, mold, mildew and some black marks. Comparing the linen recovery rate (the percentage of stained linen that can be washed and put back into stock) of Xeros versus the traditional acqueous process, the rate was 35.1 percent for Xeros versus 22.6 percent for the traditional process. An increase of more than 50 percent, delivering considerable savings.
http://www.ltcworldwide.com, http://www.xeroscleaning.com


- Vagabond Inn Hotels Selects SkyTouch Technology's Cloud-Based Property Management System
- The Riverhouse Hotel and Conference Center Selects Springer-Miller Systems SMS|Host Hospitality Management System
Vagabond Inn Hotels Selects SkyTouch Technology's Cloud-Based Property Management System
SkyTouch Technology has announced that Vagabond Inn will use the SkyTouch Hotel OS® platform to operate its portfolio of hotels. Vagabond Inn selected SkyTouch to help drive enhanced operational performance and a better guest experience at its properties. As a proven leader in hospitality technology, SkyTouch is well-positioned to help Vagabond Inn reach its long-term goals for expansion.
http://www.skytouchtechnology.com, http://www.VagabondInn.com
The Riverhouse Hotel and Conference Center Selects Springer-Miller Systems SMS|Host Hospitality Management System
Springer-Miller Systems (SMS) has announced that The Riverhouse Hotel & Convention Center has chosen the SMS|Host Hospitality Management System for its 221-room hotel and conference center in Bend, Ore. The SMS|Host Hotel management system allows the Riverhouse to provide each guest with a seamless service experience across all aspects of their stay. Using Springer-Miller’s Identification Document Scanning and Signature Capture, the Riverhouse can efficiently and quickly check guests into the property.  They will ensure the highest level of credit card security for their guests with the use of Springer-Miller’s Secure Payment Systems.
http://www.riverhouse.com, http://www.springermiller.com 


- Viceroy Hotel Group Changes GDS Code To “VG”
- Twinpalms Phuket Migrates to SHR’s WindsurferCRS Distribution Platform
- StayNTouch Rover™ PMS Expands Distribution With SiteMinder Partnership
- Austria Trend Hotels Signs With SiteMinder
- TravelClick Wins More than 40 Awards for Website Design in 2015
For more information on Reservations for 12/18/15


- Newmarket Opens Registration for 2016 Customer Conference
- GuestCentric and Flip.to Partner to Help Hotels Drive Direct Bookings Through Advocacy
- nSight Expands in Miami with Thirteen New Hotel Clients
For more information on Marketing/Management for 12/18/15


- Expedia, Inc., Invests in ALICE to Improve Guest Experience Management
- Monscierge Releases Hospitality Intelligence Reporting to Give Insight Into Guest Preferences
- Gaylord Hotels® Completes BrandWide Rollout of Enseo® Platform
- Technology and Data Hold the Key to Elusive Guest Loyalty and Fuel Competitive Edge for Hotels, According to Sabre-commissioned Study
- CytexOne Leverages Control4 Solutions to Bring the Benefits of IoT and Smart Home Technologies to Hotels and Smart Buildings
For more information on Personalization/Guest Experience for 12/18/15


- Gaylord Palms Chooses Kaba Networked Locks for Secure Access
Gaylord Palms Chooses Kaba Networked Locks for Secure Access
The Gaylord Palms Resort & Convention Center has converted to Kaba Saflok MT RFID electronic door locks, which interface seamlessly with property management and energy management systems. Gaylord Palms is located in Kissimmee, Fla., just outside of the Orlando area.
http://www.kabalodging.com, http://www.GaylordHotels.com


- Atlanta Leads All U.S. Markets in Transaction Volume
- Expedia Completes Acquisition of HomeAway
- AccorHotels to Acquire Three Iconic Hotel Brands
- AccorHotels plans to increase rooms by 30%
- Hilton Worldwide Continues Expansion in Turkey with the Opening of Five New Hotels
- Homeinns Enters into Definitive Merger Agreement with BTG Hotels Group
- Pandox AB Acquiring 18-hotel Portfolio in Germany from Fattal Hotels for €400 Million ($432.4M)
- Frasers Hospitality Expands U.K. Footprint with Further Acquisition Through its Malmaison and Hotel du Vin Group
- Strategic Hotels & Resorts to Be Acquired by Blackstone
- With Newly Created $525M Investment Fund, Provenance Hotel Partners Acquires Seven of Nine Hotels it Manages
- Extended Stay America Completes Sale of Crossland Economy Studios for $285 Million
- Carlson Rezidor and Mushtaq Group Sign Portfolio Agreement to Open Seven Hotels in Jammu and Kashmir
For more information on Mergers and Acquisitions for 12/18/15


- Burba Hotel Network Contributes $5,000 to Annual Giving Campaign
Burba Hotel Network Contributes $5,000 to Annual Giving Campaign
Burba Hotel Network (BHN) has contributed $5,000 to the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation’s (AH&LEF) 2015 Annual Giving Campaign. This is BHN’s third gift to AH&LEF at the six-diamond level. BHN is a worldwide leader in developing and organizing conferences for the hotel and tourism investment community, having completed nearly 130 conferences with almost 90,000 international delegates to date. A long-time partner of AH&LA, it has co-hosted The Americas Lodging Investment Summit (ALIS) with AH&LA since 2002. The proceeds from ALIS support AH&LEF and the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute. The Annual Giving Campaign is AH&LEF’s key yearly fundraising initiative supported solely by the hospitality sector. Initiated in 1997, the program generates funds for AH&LEF’s core programs that provide hospitality management students with academic scholarships, offer grants for pertinent industry research such as diversity and technology advancement, and promote hospitality as a career of choice. 


- PolyU Study Finds Understanding Online Complaints Crucial for Hotels in Mainland China
- The Hotel Association of Canada Names the 2015 Hall of Fame Awards of Excellence Recipients Awards
PolyU Study Finds Understanding Online Complaints Crucial for Hotels in Mainland China
Hotels in China should take the opportunity to learn about how they can improve their services by understanding and acting on customers' online reviews, according to Dr. Norman Au and Professor Rob Law of the School of Hotel and Tourism Management (SHTM) at The Hong Kong Polytechnic University and a co-researcher. In a recently published article, the researchers examine the content of online hotel reviews posted by guests, identifying cultural differences in the nature and number of complaints made by Western and Chinese customers. They advise that hotel managers need to understand these differences so that they can use them to "build strong brand value" and avoid the "devastating consequences" of poor business practices being exposed to the public.
The Hotel Association of Canada Names the 2015 Hall of Fame Awards of Excellence Recipients Awards
The Hotel Association of Canada (HAC) announced the 2015 Hall of Fame Awards of Excellence winners. The Hall of Fame Awards Program was developed by the HAC to recognize those of its members (individuals, companies or properties) that have demonstrated significant accomplishments, exemplary leadership and tireless commitment to Canada’s lodging industry.


- More Developers Are Being Philanthropic
- Travel Tech’s National Survey Shines Light on America’s Emerging Sharing Economy
- Resistance is another way to reconquer
- And more stories...
For more information on Piqued Dan's Interest for 12/18/15


And now for you-know-what…

According to a news report, a certain private school recently was faced with a unique problem. A number of the girls would go into the bathroom to refresh their makeup and put on lipstick throughout the day.
That was fine, but during the craziness of mid-term exams and in anticipation of the coming holidays, after they put on their lipstick they would press their lips to the mirror, leaving dozens of little lip prints in patterns on the mirror. Every night, the maintenance man would remove them and the next day, the girls would put them back. Finally the principal decided that something had to be done.
She called all the girls to the bathroom and met them there with the maintenance man. She explained that all these lip prints were causing a major problem for the custodian who had to clean the mirrors every night. To demonstrate how difficult it had been to clean the mirrors, she asked the maintenance man to show the girls how much effort was required. He took out a long-handled squeegee, dipped it in the toilet, and cleaned the mirror with it.
Since then, there have been no lip prints on the mirror. There are teachers, and then there are educators.

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