⚠ We would appreciate if you would disable your ad blocker when visiting our site! ⚠

Siegel Sez

November 19, 2010

Siegel Sez

by: Richard Siegel

Sleep can be so overrated, honestly who needs it? I started my week in New York on Saturday night. Enough said there, right? Then the International Hotel/Motel and Restaurant Show kicks in and the next three days are nonstop. The show has gotten smaller, but still has a strong industry presence.  I did talk to those that run IH/M&RS and strongly suggested that this might be a time to reinvent itself, at least for the technology sector. There should be some interesting conversations after the first of the year.  Hospitality Upgrade had our customer appreciation dinner on Monday night in New York and the 35 people in attendance raved about the restaurant. Neil Holm from Hyphen told me that Vice Versa was one of the best meals in New York. Everybody who attended that night agreed. What a fun night.

On Tuesday afternoon I was flying from New York to Las Vegas for the Global Gaming Expo referred to as G2E.  Tracy Flynn from Infor was on the flight with me and Gregg Hopkins from Libra OnDemand was on the flight leaving nearly two hours behind ours.  Honestly, this was one of the most amazing experiences ever on a flight and I couldn’t do the story justice or you would be reading forever. I will say this, Gregg changed his flight to the earlier flight to fly with us and gave up his first class seat to get waitlisted for an upgrade that Tracy and I were also waitlisted for. Tracy and I got upgraded; Gregg just missed by one and was back in coach. As we were taxiing out to the runway to depart, certain conversations happened in first class between the flight attendant, me and a couple of other passengers. All of a sudden we turned around, we went back to the gate, two girls sitting in first class were thrown off the plane and Gregg got moved up to first class. Pearl Brewer from UNLV who was sitting across the aisle from me looked at me in a somewhat bizarre way and I pleaded the fifth.  It was a very interesting experience to say the least, but what we all learned was if there is a meal offered and the choices are chicken or pasta, choose the pasta.

G2E was great and was highlighted by the WhiteSands/Rainmaker party at the Playboy Club at the Palms Hotel. I especially enjoyed talking to Marshall Andrew the CIO at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, the Strip’s next and maybe the last luxury hotel that will be opening for awhile. They are opening on December 15, 2010 and those who have toured the property have shared many accolades regarding how spectacular it is. Hopefully I will make it out for the opening, it should be quite the experience.

I am heading back to Atlanta in a few hours, to catch up for four days and then am heading to London for the British Association of Hospitality Accountants annual conference where I am moderating a panel on Thanksgiving Day. Yes, this will be one of my stranger Thanksgivings. Frank Wolfe from HFTP will also be there so who knows, maybe we can sneak out and find a turkey leg together.  Thanksgiving or not, I am honored they have invited me and am looking forward to the event.  After the conference I am taking a short side trip to Portugal. I figured if I needed to be working on Thanksgiving, why not make the most of it and go somewhere I have never been.  It will be a fun adventure, but in truth I would be OK just getting some sleep. Maybe sleep isn’t overrated, I hope to find out.

Here now is the real reason we are here, Jon Inge’s technology review of the last few weeks.  I hope everybody has a great Thanksgiving; I for one do take a moment and instead of stressing about life actually realize that most of us have a lot to be thankful for. 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



- Major changes in the HMS landscape
Three major announcements this week confirm that we’re in the middle of a significant sea change in hospitality management system technology.  Amadeus formally announced its long-expected Amadeus Hotel Platform, which combines central reservation, property management and global distribution systems into one fully integrated and centrally hosted platform. 

On an even larger scale, HP licensed Pegasus’ Rezview NG reservations and networking technology, positioning it as one of the core elements of its new travel management application.  HP hasn’t even blessed it with a name yet, but intends it to cover every aspect of travel reservations and operations across airlines, hotel companies, rail operators and cruise lines, all in a centrally hosted SOA environment that will plug in various other vendors’ modules as needed for particular purposes. 

Both of these offerings should hold special interest for major international hotel chains looking for a comprehensive, centrally hosted application supported worldwide.  No disrespect to MICROS which might legitimately claim to offer this already, but competitive products from credible vendors using current technology and architecture can only be good for both MICROS and the industry.

At the other end of the scale, start-up vendor hetras announced that citizenM, the ultra-hip Netherlands-based chain (why are lowercase brand names deemed to be cool when they just disappear into their surrounding text?), has made it the standard HMS for all its current and future properties.  Why is this significant?  Both because citizenM is often seen as a pioneer in using technology to provide the level of service today’s mobile travelers are looking for, in every guest service and operational aspect, and because hetras’ management team includes Michael Heinze, Keith Gruen and now Uli Pillau, respectively the founder of HoBooBox connectivity technology, co-founder of Fidelio, and a long-standing member of both MICROS-Fidelio’s and IDeaS’ senior management teams.  Nothing these folks do should be taken lightly.

Add in the other vendor migration plans I mentioned in the last newsletter, plus the new centrally hosted product lines either just available or to be released shortly from Agilysys, Infor SoftBrands and PAR Springer-Miller, and the systems scenario is clearly going to change significantly over the next couple of years.  It’s going to be interesting to see how the smaller niche players adapt.
This year’s International Hotel, Motel + Restaurant Show (IHMRS) Editors’ Choice Award for Technology went to MICROS for its iPhone application, MyStayManager.  Demonstrated at the 2009 HITEC but formally introduced in February, MyStayManager provides real-time mobile access to hotels’ OPERA systems to help guests manage the details of current and future stays. 


- Scott Anderson re-activates High Country Hospitality consultancy
- ProfitSword hires Mitch Youngerman, Maureen Allen, Paul Bennie, Todd Chapuis and Francis Ngugi
- Uli Pillau joins hetras as managing director
- Keith Watson appointed vice president corporate product at eRevMax
- James Filsinger hired by EZ Yield as CEO
- Jennifer Ranno joins EZYield.com as vice president global sales and marketing
- Mark Houser joins Roomlinx as chief technology officer
For more information on People on the Move for 11/19/10


- citizenM Hotels contracts for hetras HMS in all current and future properties
- Amadeus formally launches Amadeus Hotel Platform, integrates CRS, HMS and GDS
- Casino Enterprise Management names MICROS winner of HOT Award in Employee Productivity and Efficiency
- Agilysys launches Mobile ResNet application for LMS
- 3 Stars Hotels’ MaxHotel in Brussels installs Ariane Systems kiosks
- Ariane Systems debuts Allegro Online/Mobile/Kiosk check-in/out technology application
- Ariane Systems integrates Hypercom’s SmartPayments Wynid software into checkin/checkout applications
For more information on Hospitality Management Systems for 11/19/10


- HP Enterprise Services licenses Pegasus’ RezView NG as a core component of new travel system
- The Ascott Limited selects Sabre Hospitality Solutions’ SynXis CRS
- Scenic Hotel Group switches 14 properties to SynXis CRS
- Las Vegas Sands implementing Travel Tripper’s RezTrip 2.0 booking engine at five properties
For more information on Reservations for 11/19/10


- TRAVELCLICK wins 12 WMA WebAwards for excellence in Website development
- Tepic Management Group implements UniFocus’ GUESTScope in three sites
- AH&LA publishes new technology primer, “Creating an Accessible Web Presence for the Lodging Industry”
- Milestone Internet Marketing receives four HSMAI Adrian Awards and three WMA WebAwards
- Milestone Internet Marketing releases v1.3 of eBuzz Connect social media management application
- CEM magazine’s HOT Awards names Libra OnDemand’s Hospitality Management System as winner in Internet services category
- VIZERGY receives three WMA WebAwards
For more information on Marketing/Management for 11/19/10


- SiteMinder launches application to connect PMSs, CRSs to booking Websites and wholesalers
- CEM magazine names Rainmaker’s revolution winner of 2010 HOT Award in revenue generation category
SiteMinder has launched a new application to connect property management systems (PMS) and central reservation systems (CRS) into its channel management technology for connection to booking Websites and wholesalers around the globe.  Branded pmsXchange and crsXchange, the application delivers a two-way interface between a hotel's PMS or CRS and SiteMinder's online booking channels for hotels to control their online inventory (including dynamic rates and availability) directly from their own PMSs or CRSs and receive instant delivery of online reservations.  SiteMinder currently connects to OPERA PMS, OPERA ORS, Callista, ResBook, RMS, RoomMaster, EzyRez and CMS Guest Centrix, amongst others.  http://www.siteminder.com  
Casino Enterprise Management magazine named The Rainmaker Group’s revolution revenue management system the winner of its 2010 Hospitality Operations Technology (HOT) Award in the revenue generation category.  http://www.aceme.org, http://www.letitrain.com/


- PSAV named Best Audio-Visual Presentation Provider in Southern California
PSAV Presentation Services has been named Best Audio-Visual Presentation Provider in Southern California by Southern California Meetings + Events magazine’s second annual Readers' Choice Best Of award campaign, its second consecutive win.  http://www.psav.com  


- Holiday Inn, Crowne Plaza upgrading 61 U.K. hotels with HD entertainment, HSIA
- Trump Soho integrates Control4’s Suite system with Guest-Tek’s OneView Media
Holiday Inn and Crowne Plaza are upgrading the guestroom technology in 61 of their U.K. managed estate hotels at a cost of GBP9 million. The hotels, owned by LRG, will be the first in the United Kingdom to offer NetStreams’ Panorama High Definition (HD) digital interactive guest entertainment system, and will also implement secure high-speed Internet access throughout all areas.  The upgrade is due to complete in summer 2011.  http://www.ichotelsgroup.com, http://www.netstreams.com  
The Trump Soho has integrated Control4’s Suite system with Guest-Tek’s OneView Media on its guestroom HD televisions to provide an increased level of guest interactive on-demand services.  http://www.trumpsohohotel.com, http://www.control4.com, http://www.guest-tek.com  


- Hyatt implements Infor’s WFM Workbrain workforce management system
Hyatt has implemented Infor’s WFM Workbrain workforce management system for more than 40,000 individuals working at over 110 North American hotels.  The system is deployed in a shared service format and allows Hyatt to report labor costs and automate previously manual time-off request and accrual processes such as payroll close, time-off requests and retroactive adjustments.  The application includes staff self-service capabilities including visibility of hours and time-off requests.  http://www.hyatt.com, http://www.infor.com 
Professional Accounting Solutions (PAS) has introduced pasExpense, a ready reference for hotel personnel to look up the needed account, department, analysis codes and notes associated with items that a hotel or casino uses in its daily business.  Users can define a comprehensive list of items purchased by their property (or leverage one of PAS’s pre-existing databases), and then associate the specific chart of accounts, departments and other user-defined analysis required for proper classification.  pasExpense also supports user-defined notes and descriptions and is designed to work seamlessly with any chart of accounts or segmentation format.  http://www.pashospitality.com  



And now for you-know-what…

One day a little girl was sitting and watching her mother do the dishes at the kitchen sink. She suddenly noticed that her mother had several strands of white hair sticking out in contrast on her brunette head.

She looked at her mother and inquisitively asked, "Why are some of your hairs white, Mom?"

Her mother replied, "Well, every time that you do something wrong and make me cry or unhappy, one of my hairs turns white."

The little girl thought about this for a while and then asked, "Momma, how come all of grandma's hairs are white?"

want to read more articles like this?

want to read more articles like this?

Sign up to receive our twice-a-month Watercooler and Siegel Sez Newsletters and never miss another article or news story.