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Siegel Sez

February 05, 2016

Siegel Sez

by: Richard Siegel

The Accident on Interstate 5. After reading Dan’s opening to the technology review this week about the importance of supporting the customers that are using technology, it got me reminiscing. Twenty-two years ago, before the Internet and email, if you had a problem with a system you had to make a phone call to get help. I had a friend who bought a new PC and was having trouble and needed to call Microsoft. He was continuously put on hold while trying to get help, and instead of hold music he was patched though to a local radio station. Yes, he was on the phone with Microsoft located up in Seattle and all he kept getting while on hold was updates on the accident on Interstate 5. It was a funny but important article in one of our very early issues of Hospitality Upgrade. Yes, the use of email and Google sure has changed us a lot, maybe too much? Quite often business is done via email today, but have we gotten to a point where talking on the phone would quicken the process? I am on the phone most of the day this time of year and love it. Business aside, you catch up with people, share experiences, and in some cases get to really know people because you have actually talked to them. When your customers and friends are all over the world you cannot always count on seeing them face to face very often. But we all can make time to catch up via the phone or skype. Many years ago when I was a kid there was only one phone company, AT&T. They made money when you made a phone call. They had a television ad that I often think about today. It simply said the best phone call you can make is the one you don’t need to make. It really resonated with me when I think of people that I haven’t talked to in ages and how good I feel after I make those calls. For many of you reading this there was actually a time when there was only one phone company and no Internet. Scary, isn’t it? For the rest of you that remember, all I can say is, we are getting old, aren’t we? But hopefully older and wiser. 

HSMAI in New York City, Agilysys in Las Vegas, HTNG in Jacksonville, Fla., and ITB in Berlin; Hospitality Upgrade will be busy traveling the next 30 days, getting updates on industry happenings to share with you in print and online.  If you are not receiving our offerings and want to follow the latest in technology happenings, I encourage you to subscribe here. Who knows, maybe when you do I will want to call you. Wouldn’t that make your day? ?

Here now is the real reason we are here, the aforementioned Dan Phillips with his latest technology review. I will see you at the end with this week’s attempt at you-know-what. I am told zillions of times throughout the year that people love how we always end Siegel Sez with a joke. I have a very thick line, but sometimes we get feedback that we cross it. When you read thru the technology news today and then read the joke, if you think we crossed the line then please drop me a note at this email address. It was funny discussing it as a group; most were onboard with me, while a couple disagreed. I love a joke that has been updated, and that is what we used today. In life, you need to take chances and those that know me know that I do. Usually it works out fine, but sometimes……


Technology NEWSSTAND

by: Dan Phillips
Recent headlines, from Dan Phillips


In the hotel industry much of our focus is on the service that hotels are supposed to provide their guests.  Most every vendor catering to this vertical sells something that proposes to enhance guest service.  Ironically, there are many, many stories out there these days about the lack of good service from the vendors to their clients, the hotels.  It is sexier to investors and board members to show how much money is being spent on R&D, staying current and beating the competitors either with new Wow factors or by acquiring companies.  Spending a significant percentage on customer support and service doesn’t immediately make ROI pop into the heads of the captains of industry.  Nobody sells a product or service that will never require support or additional service.  If, as a consultant in this industry for more than 25 years I could offer a bit of advice, please make your company differentiate yourself from all the rest by the customer support you provide.  If you want to know how it is done or how to empower your support staff, go into an Apple Store and watch.

I look forward to serving you,

Dan Phillips
Dare to Imagine


- Shift4's VT4 Mobile Point-of-sale Solution Named a Winner in 10th Annual Pay Awards
- QikServe Becomes Oracle PartnerNetwork Gold Level Partner
Shift4's VT4 Mobile Point-of-sale Solution Named a Winner in 10th Annual Pay Awards
Shift4 Corporation has announced that its VT4® mobile point-of-sale solution was selected as a 2016 Pay Awards winner in the Best M-POS Solution category. For 10 years, Pay Awards has conferred one of the most prestigious recognitions of excellence in the worldwide prepaid, mobile and emerging payments industry. The awards are presented annually by Paybefore, a source of industry information for payments executives. VT4 provides merchants of any size in any industry with a fast, convenient and secure way to accept credit, debit, prepaid and gift card transactions both online and offline from any smartphone, tablet or laptop. 
QikServe Becomes Oracle PartnerNetwork Gold Level Partner
QikServe, the mobile order and payment specialist, announced that it has achieved Gold Partner status in the Oracle PartnerNetwork (OPN). By attaining Gold Level membership, Oracle has recognized QikServe for its commitment to establish Oracle-related knowledge in delivering a robust, enterprise-ready mobile order and pay solution complete with personalized loyalty and marketing capabilities. As a Gold Level Partner, QikServe is fully integrated into Oracle Hospitality’s point-of-sale (POS) platform, meaning customers who use Oracle’s POS solution can quickly deploy a fully branded mobile order and payment service for their customers.
http://www.oracle.com/partners, http://www.qikserve.com


- NanoLumens Presents AMP Capital and Station Casinos with Inaugural Crystal Nixel™ Awards
NanoLumens Presents AMP Capital and Station Casinos with Inaugural Crystal Nixel™ Awards 
NanoLumens announced that AMP Capital and Station Casinos were the recipients of the inaugural NanoLumens Crystal Nixel™ Awards, which recognize excellence in the creative design of a visualization solution that sets new standards for customer engagement. NanoLumens is presenting these awards annually to an American partner and international partner that place creativity front and center in the design of an installation. In the inaugural year of the program, Crystal Nixel™ Awards were presented to AMP Capital for the Pacific Fair Shopping Centre installation in Australia and to Station Casinos for the Red Rock Casino Resort & Spa installation in Las Vegas, Nev.
http://www.nanolumens.com, http://www.ampcapital.com, https://www.sclv.com  


- Aptech Computer Systems Adds Office Space and Staff to Serve New Clients
Aptech Computer Systems Adds Office Space and Staff to Serve New Clients
Aptech Computer Systems, a leading provider of hospitality software for business intelligence, budgeting and enterprise financial accounting, announced that it added new office space and increased staff to support the growing number of hotel companies that implemented its Targetvue Budgeting and Forecasting, Execuvue® Business Intelligence and Profitvue® and PVNG Enterprise Accounting systems.


- Wind Creek Casino Montgomery Selects Percipia for Guestroom Technology Deployment
- Four-star Boutique Hotel Eastlund Featuring Innovative Bittel Products
- Frontier Communications Adds Fresh Layer of Efficiency to Luxury Resort
For more information on Communications/Infrastructure for 02/05/16


- Hotel Internet Services Minimizes Risk of Cyber Attacks on Hotel Clients with Secure Fusion Gateway Solution
- Hotel Hosting Security Conference was the Victim of a Data Breach
- Landry’s and Golden Nugget Complete Investigation and Report on Payment Card Incident
For more information on Data Security & Cyber Attacks for 02/05/16


- Hilton Worldwide Becomes the First Hospitality Company to Achieve U.S. Department of Energy’s Superior Energy Performance Certification
- Host Hotels & Resorts Opens New Axiom Hotel
- Virgin Hotels Chicago Achieves LEED Gold from U.S. Green Building Council
For more information on Sustainability for 02/05/16


- Destination Hotels and Commune Hotels and Resorts Merge
- Diamond Resorts International Completes Acquisition of Intrawest Resort Club Group
- Minor Hotel Group Completes Largest Ever Hospitality Deal in Portugal with Acquisition of Tivoli Hotels & Resorts for EUR 294.2 Million
For more information on Mergers & Acquisitions for 02/05/16


- Marriott’s Courtyard Muncie Launches Program to Teach Persons With Disabilities Valuable Job Skills
- HFTP to Produce Digital Day of Learning
- HFTP Chapters to Host Regional Events Across the United States
- AHLEI Publishes New Editions of Convention Management and Service Textbook and Managerial Accounting Textbook
For more information on Hospitality Education for 02/05/16


- Agilysys Selects Dr. Bryan K. Williams as a Guest Speaker for Its Annual Conference in Las Vegas
- International Mediterranean Tourism Market to be Held in Tel Aviv, Will Highlight Smart Tourism
Agilysys Selects Dr. Bryan K. Williams as a Guest Speaker for Its Annual Conference in Las Vegas
Agilysys has signed Dr. Bryan K. Williams to be a guest speaker at its 2016 User Conference and Executive Summit. This year’s three-day event will be held at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, Nev. Inspire 2016 will feature dynamic and interactive educational sessions designed to help customers build lasting connections with their guests to drive guest recruitment, increase wallet share and reduce operating costs through the use of technology from Agilysys and its partners.
http://www.bwenterprise.net, http://www.agilysys.com
International Mediterranean Tourism Market to be Held in Tel Aviv, Will Highlight Smart Tourism
On February 9-10, 2016, IMTM (International Mediterranean Tourism Market), one of the largest tourism fairs in the Middle East, will take place at the Tel Aviv Convention Center in Israel. The fair provides tourism professionals with an opportunity to meet colleagues, buyers, suppliers and exhibitors from Israel and overseas. The IMTM will feature two major events including FuTurism.com, an innovation conference featuring panels of prominent keynote speakers from around the world related to smart tourism, and The Digital Travel Dome, an exhibition featuring technological breakthroughs and startups with the latest innovation in the field of tourism.


- Beating Airbnb with the “Experience Economy”
- Are Dead Zones Hurting Your Satisfaction Scores?
- IACC Reveals the Top Meeting Package Trends for 2016
- Marriott Executives Explain the Brand’s Internal Strategy Shift at MIT
- The State of Early-Stage Travel Startups: Where Investments Went in 2015
- And more stories…

For more information on Piqued Dan's Interest for 02/05/16


- Agilysys Promotes Jim Walker to SVP of Global Revenue
- Dirk Fuehrer Appointed New Chief Executive Officer for Worldhotels
- Karolin Troubetzkoy Officially Takes Office as President of the Caribbean Hotel & Tourism Association (CHTA)
- Omni Hotels & Resorts Appoints Mark Wykes as Vice President of Sales
- And several more people on the move…
For more information on People on the Move for 02/05/16


- Four Independent Properties Install Maestro PMS
- StayNTouch Secures $9.5M Financing led by Concur’s Perfect Trip Fund and Shiji Ltd
- Oracle Introduces New Cloud Services for Hotels and Casinos
- Ariane Systems’ Partnership with CADD Emirates Brings Cutting-edge Self-service Solutions to Middle Eastern Hospitality Market
For more information on Guest Management Systems for 02/05/16


- SiteMinder Reveals Top Hotel Booking Sites in 2015
- eRevMax Completes Two-way Integration with HotelsByDay  
- AccorHotels and Huazhu Finalize Their Strategic Alliance, Form Joint Distribution System
- Rakuten Travel and Marriott International Partner to Welcome Japanese Travelers to 4,300+ Locations Worldwide
- Regatta Travel Solutions Selected by Visit Pensacola, Expands Partnership with Visit Tucson
For more information on Reservations for 02/05/16


- Cendyn/ONE to be Awarded with Gold Award in 59th Annual Adrian Awards Competition
- ReviewPro Partners With Serenata to Create Rich Guest Profiles
Cendyn/ONE to be Awarded with Gold Award in 59th Annual Adrian Awards Competition
The Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) will honor Cendyn/ONE and Hotel del Coronado with the Gold Adrian Award for digital marketing excellence for its winning entries in the 59th annual Adrian Awards, one of the largest global travel marketing competitions. In 2015, Cendyn/ONE launched a series of data-driven digital advertising campaigns that positioned the majestic Hotel del Coronado as the ultimate romantic Southern California destination. Cendyn/ONE worked with the hotel to design dynamic, engaging, digital display ads which focused on experience rather than price, which resulted in a 32 percent uplift in bookings and revenue and a 7 percent increase in average daily rates.
http://www.cendynONE.com, http://www.adrianawards.com
ReviewPro Partners With Serenata to Create Rich Guest Profiles
ReviewPro, a leading provider of guest intelligence solutions for independent hotel brands, has partnered with Serenata Intraware, a leading provider of email marketing and customer relationship management (CRM) solutions, to provide hoteliers with a way to seamlessly create in-depth guest profiles with feedback, preferences and activity history. ReviewPro has integrated with Serenata to allow mutual clients to harness the power of both company’s guest intelligence features to more effectively communicate with clients and to deliver more customized marketing messages and targeted offers. Red Lion Hotel Corporation was one of the first clients to benefit from this new partnership.
http://www.reviewpro.com, http://www.serenata.com, http://www.redlion.com  


- Rainmaker President Tammy Farley Named One of HSMAI's Top 25
Rainmaker President Tammy Farley Named One of HSMAI's Top 25
HSMAI has named Tammy Farley, president of The Rainmaker Group, as one of this year's Top 25 Extraordinary Minds in Hospitality Sales, Marketing and Revenue Optimization. Eighteen years ago, Farley co-founded The Rainmaker Group with company CEO Bruce Barfield. Today, she’s an oft-acknowledged leader and visionary in revenue optimization. The most recent accolade comes from the prestigious Hotel Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) which just released its list of 2015 Top 25: Extraordinary Minds in Hospitality Sales, Marketing, Revenue Optimization. The group will be honored during the Adrian Awards Dinner Reception and Gala on Feb. 16, 2016, at the New York Marriott Marquis.
http://www.LetItRain.com, http://www.adrianawards.com


- Crave Enters Latin America with AMResorts Signings
Crave Enters Latin America with AMResorts Signings
State-of-the-art tablets from one of the United Kingdom’s leading providers of in-room tablets are appearing in prestigious hotels across Latin America, thanks to a landmark signing with AMResorts. The in-room tablets from Crave Interactive – a European market leader supplying tablet and app-based solutions to the hospitality industry – have been installed in AMResorts’ new Secrets Papagayo in Costa Rica, Breathless Cabo San Lucas Resort & Spa in Mexico and Secrets Playa Bonita in Panama. Further installations are scheduled in 2016 starting with Secrets Akumal in February. Crave’s in-room tablets come preloaded with the company’s unique propriety operating system, Crave OS, and allow hotels to do away with all printed in-room communications and information.
http://www.crave-emenu.com, http://www.amresorts.com


And now for you-know-what…

One buzz word in today's business world is MARKETING. However, people often ask for a simple explanation of "marketing."  Well, here it is:

You're a woman and you see a handsome guy at a party. You go up to him and say, "I'm fantastic in bed."

You're at a party with a bunch of friends and see a handsome guy. One of your friends goes up to him and, pointing at you, says, "She's fantastic in bed."

You see a handsome guy at a party. You go up to him and get his telephone number. The next day you call and say, "Hi, I'm fantastic in bed."

You see a guy at a party; you straighten your dress. You walk up to him and pour him a drink. You say, "May I?" and reach up to straighten his tie, brushing your breast lightly against his arm, and then say, "By the way, I'm fantastic in bed."

You're at a party and see a handsome guy. He walks up to you and says, "I hear you're fantastic in bed."

You're at a party and see a handsome guy. He fancies you, but you talk him into going home with your friend.
That's a SALES REP.

He isn't satisfied with your friend so he calls you.

You're on your way to a party when you realize that there could be handsome men in all these houses you're passing, so you climb onto the roof of one situated towards the center and shout at the top of your lungs, "I'm fantastic in bed!"

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