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

Siegel Sez

September 15, 2023

Siegel Sez

For anyone to put on an event where people travel from all around the world, there will be pressure. You want everyone to leave feeling like it was worth the trip. But, when you’re a small company and put on an event for more than 100 attendees, the pressure is overwhelming. Six months of planning for just three days just doesn’t seem right, but that’s what we did. There are the normal highs in life, but then there are highs that are unexplainable. That was what we experienced at The CIO Summit last week at the fabulous Hotel Van Zandt in Austin, Texas.
As soon as the event ended, we began to get overwhelmed with thank-yous, and several returning attendees told us it was our best event yet! If you want a detailed look at our 21st CIO Summit please make sure you subscribe to Hospitality Upgrade at www.hospitalityupgrade.com/subscribe - you can get a printed copy and/or the digital edition. It was an amazing experience for all involved, including many first-time attendees. Thanks to the great speakers, HFTP and especially Sage Hospitality Group who set the bar very high for hosting our CIO Summit. The biggest thank you goes to the technology leaders from most brands, major management companies and an assortment of companies that own and operate multiple destination resorts. What an experience for all of us.
Speaking of experiences, as only Doug Rice can do, this week’s Definitely Doug column shares how much money hotels are leaving on the table when it comes to guests staying at a property and booking local experiences. It’s eye opening, especially the timing of when the booking of experiences happens. We thank Doug for a great column that opens our eyes to how hotels can increase revenue with very little costs. This week is the start of a two-parter, so take a few moments and read through it. I know I learned a lot, and you will, too.
Six days in 105-degree temperatures in Austin and next week I am off to Phoenix for the Lodging Conference which is truly where money rules when it comes to hotels. They do more and more with technology, but the Lodging Conference is all about investing in hotels. It’s a nice break from the technology world for me and I always run into a lot of industry friends as well as new contacts. Yes, the temperature again will be over 100 degrees. Will this summer ever end?
Here now is the real reason we’re here - the latest industry technology happenings along with Definitely Doug. I’ll see you at the end with this week’s attempt at ‘you-know-what’. Thank you again to all who attended our 21st CIO Summit. It was simply amazing this year!

Definitely Doug

Experience Matters!

Hotels are usually the first thing a traveler books within a destination. And hotels usually know that destination better than anyone else (or any website) a guest might consult. But are hotels connecting the dots?

Aside from a few destination resorts, people rarely travel just to stay in hotels. Rather, they stay in hotels because they are traveling, whether for business, leisure, or family. Available spending data suggests that for leisure trips, hotels are secondary to experiences. By my calculation, more money is spent by leisure travelers globally on local experiences than on hotels.

The numbers are staggering: a Skift study estimates that local experiences will generate $252 billion worldwide revenue in 2024, which compares to estimated global hotel revenue of around $400 billion (maybe half of that being leisure). Most experiences offer commissions of 10% to 40% to booking agents, which can include hotels. And while intermediaries may take a piece of that commission, it is common for hotels that sell third-party experiences to earn an average of at least 10%, above and beyond any costs; in many cases it can be more. If hotels could capture just 25% of local experience bookings of leisure travelers, that would result in $6.3 billion in additional profit in an industry that earns, globally, around $40 billion a year. That would basically be found money, and it’s not chump change.

What do I mean by local experiences? They include almost anything that a traveler might do while visiting a destination: sightseeing tours, attractions, historical sites, concerts, sporting events, dining, amusement parks, water parks, zoos, aquariums, fishing charters, golf, bike or boat rentals, cooking classes, cultural activities, classes, spa treatments, shopping, and many more.

While travel (and especially leisure travel) generates bookings for experience operators, experiences can also generate bookings for hotels. Taylor Swift’s The Eras Tour is estimated to have generated $208 million in hotel revenue across 53 shows in 20 cities – and those Swifties would not have booked hotels if not for the concerts. Concerts, sporting events, and festivals are often the main reason for travel. Hotels that fully connect with the experience ecosystem can reach this audience much better than those that do not.

Click here to read more of Doug’s column Experience Matters!

Douglas Rice
Email: douglas.rice@hosptech.net
Twitter: @dougrice
LinkedIn: www.linkedin.com/in/ricedouglas
Experience Matters!



- Cendyn Reinforces Commitment to Driving Profitable Revenue Through WIHP Acquisition
Cendyn, a catalyst for digital transformation in the hospitality industry, proudly announces the strategic acquisition of WIHP, an industry leader in hotel digital marketing services and technology. The acquisition signifies a key milestone in Cendyn’s quest to facilitate profitable revenue growth for the hospitality industry through continued investment in driving direct bookings.


- WorldVue Announces Appointment of Julian Daniel to Vice President Operations, EMEA
WorldVue, a trusted provider of video, digital infrastructure, wireless connectivity, and professional services to guest-centric properties worldwide, is proud to announce the appointment of Julian Daniel to Vice President Operations, EMEA. As WorldVue continues to grow and evolve as a company, the executive team welcomes Daniel to play a pivotal, strategic role in the brand’s current and future presence across Europe, the Middle East, and Africa.

- Cloud5 Welcomes Anai Patel as Chief Financial Officer
Cloud5 Communications, a leading provider of communications and technology solutions for more than 5,000 hotels, MDUs, and commercial facilities across the Americas, announced the appointment of Anai Patel as its new CFO.

- Edie Lowe Joins Tailos as Senior Vice President of Strategic Accounts
Micah Green, President & CEO of Tailos, announced the addition of Edie Lowe as Senior Vice President of Strategic Accounts. Lowe will oversee the strategic growth efforts of Tailos in the hotel and hospitality sectors.


- Amadeus’ Latest iHotelier StayPlus Capabilities Enable Curated Hotel Experiences that Drive Profitability
The rising need for hotels to generate more revenue-enhancing opportunities that go beyond guest rooms has contributed to demand for a central reservations system (CRS) and booking engine that is simple, intuitive and has the power to personalize guest experiences.

- Travel Outlook Partners with Thrio to Advance the Travel Industry Customer Service Experience
Travel Outlook, The Premier Hotel Call Center™, is pleased to announce a partnership with Thrio, a revolutionary contact center platform that’s making waves in the customer service industry.

- Australia's Rottnest Island Authority Deploys P3's Custom Booking Engine to Address Unique Property and Guest Needs
Hotel software solutions provider P3 is being credited for transforming the booking process for Rottnest Island Authority, after developing a customized booking engine that effectively addresses the authority’s diverse range of accommodations and guests.


- Special Report Highlights Hotel Investor Attitudes, Opportunities for Revenue Management Technology
IDeaS, a SAS, company, the world’s leading provider of hotel revenue management software and services, released a special report. The report “Unlocking Hotel Performance: The Power of Revenue Management Technology Today,” includes key insights into how investors view revenue technologies, the role of artificial intelligence in hospitality, and how technology is reshaping hospitality commercial organizations.


- PPDS Unveils New Sustainability-Driven Philips D-Line 4650 4K Digital Signage Range with Breakthrough Modular Design for Extended Product Lifetimes in Hospitality
PPDS, an exclusive global provider of Philips professional displays and dedicated AV software, is delighted to announce the latest evolution in its strategy to bring ever more sustainable digital display solutions to market, with the launch of the new and enhanced Philips Signage 4650 D-Line Series of 4K displays for hospitality environments.

- Whistle for Cloudbeds Expands Worldwide
Cloudbeds, the hospitality management platform powering more reservations and happier guests for lodging businesses around the globe, today announced the worldwide availability of Whistle for Cloudbeds, the company’s award-winning guest communication platform.


- VAI Resort Taps Hapi and Salesforce to Deliver Hyper-Personalized Guest Experiences
VAI Resort, a $1 billion, 60-acre oasis featuring a 1,100-room luxury hotel scheduled to open in 2024 in Glendale, Arizona, has partnered with Hapi and Salesforce to personalize and differentiate guest service across the entire resort.


- The Peabody Getting Its Ducks in a Row via NEW Financial Budgeting & Forecasting Solution
The ‘South’s Grand Hotel’ located in the heart of downtown Memphis selects Targetvue by Aptech to consolidate reports, identify trends, and eliminate the maintenance and distribution of spreadsheets throughout the organization.


- Hotel Internet Services Demonstrates Hospitality's Latest in Guest WiFi and In-Room Entertainment at Independent Hotel Show 2023
Hotel Internet Services (HIS), a full-service provider of internet services and solutions, has today announced its participation as an official exhibitor of the Independent Hotel Show taking place in Miami from September 20-21, 2023.

- Cloud5 Launches Dedicated Managed Services Division Catering to the Needs of the Hospitality Industry
Cloud5 Communications, a leading provider of communications and technology solutions for more than 5,000 hotels, MDUs, and commercial facilities across the Americas, today announced the launch of its new Managed Services division.


- Rethinking Hospitality's Approach to the Workforce: Unifocus White Paper Tackles Staffing Shortages and Rising Costs
Unifocus, the leading provider of workforce management systems to the hotel and hospitality industry, published a proprietary study offering insights into the hotel industry’s ongoing labor shortage and how operators can adapt to achieve and maintain efficiency and profitability.


- MGM Resorts International Statement on Cybersecurity Issue
MGM Resorts International (the “Company” or “MGM Resorts”) today issued the following statement:


- HSMAI Expands Presence in Latin America with New Conferences in Mexico, Colombia, Peru and Chile
The Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) is excited to announce an expansion in Latin America with a new conference series launching this month in Mexico, Colombia, Peru, and Chile. HSMAI chartered its Brazil chapter in 2014 and this expansion is being led by a new Latin American Advisory Board formed in 2022.

- BDNY Returns to NYC in November with a Curated, Authentic, and Immersive Hospitality Experience
Boutique Design New York (BDNY), the leading trade fair and conference for hospitality’s boutique and lifestyle design community, returns to the Javits Center on November 12-13, 2023.


- Knowland Reports 21 Percent Growth in Meetings and Events in August
Knowland, the world’s leading provider of data-as-a-service insights on meetings and events for hospitality, reports overall U.S. meeting and event volume for August 2023 was up 21 percent over August 2022. This data is sourced from Knowland’s sales intelligence platform designed to help hoteliers build and protect a hotel’s revenue base.


- How Tours and Activities Can Drive Revenue for Travel Brands
- We Tried the Travel Plugins on ChatGPT Plus: What Worked, What Didn’t
- Does Your Hotel Have a Revenue Maximizer?
- The World’s Oldest Hotel Has Been Dispensing Hospitality for More Than 1300 Years

For more information on Piqued Our Interest for 9/15/2023

And now for the You-Know-What...

The following is an actual letter that was sent to a bank by a 96 year-old woman. The bank manager thought it amusing enough to have it published in the New York Times.
To whom it may concern,
I am writing to thank you for bouncing my check with which I endeavored to pay my plumber last month. By my calculations, three nanoseconds must have elapsed between his depositing the check and the arrival in my account of the funds needed to honor it. I refer, of course, to the automatic monthly transfer of funds from my modest savings account, an arrangement which, I admit, has been in place for only thirty-one years.
You are to be commended for seizing that brief window of opportunity, and also for debiting my account $30 by way of penalty for the inconvenience caused to your bank.
My thankfulness springs from the manner in which this incident has caused me to rethink my errant financial ways. I noticed that whereas I personally attend to your telephone calls and letters, when I try to contact you, I am confronted by the impersonal, overcharging, pre-recorded, faceless entity which your bank has recently become.
From now on, I, like you, choose only to deal with a flesh-and-blood person.
My mortgage and loan repayments will therefore and hereafter no longer be automatic, but will arrive at your bank, by check, addressed personally and confidentially to an employee at your bank whom you must nominate.
Be aware that it is an offense under the Postal Act for any other person to open such an envelope.
Please find attached an Application Contact Status form which I require your chosen employee to complete.
I am sorry it runs to eight pages, but in order that I know as much about him or her as your bank knows about me, there is no alternative.
Please note that all copies of his or her medical history must be countersigned by a Notary Public, and the mandatory details of his/her financial situation (income, debts, assets and liabilities) must be accompanied by documented proof. In due course, I will issue your employee with a PIN number which he/she must quote in dealings with me. I regret that it cannot be shorter than 28 digits but, again, I have modeled it on the number of button presses required of me to access my account balance on your phone bank service. As they say, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
Please allow me to level the playing field even further. When you call me, you will now have a menu of options on my new voice mail system to choose from.
Please press the buttons as follows:
Press 1: To make an appointment to see me.
Press 2: To query a missing payment.
Press 3: To transfer the call to my living room in case I am there.
Press 4: To transfer the call to my bedroom in case I am sleeping.
Press 5: To transfer the call to my toilet in case I am attending to nature.
Press 6: To transfer the call to my mobile phone if I am not at home.
Press 7: To leave a message on my computer, a password to access my computer is required. Password will be communicated to you at a later date to the Authorized Contact.
Press 8: To return to the main menu and to listen to options 1 through 7.
To make a general complaint or inquiry. The contact will then be put on hold, pending the attention of my automated answering service. While this may, on occasion, involve a lengthy wait, uplifting music will play for the duration of the call.
Regrettably, but again following your example, I must also levy an establishment fee of $50 to cover the setting up of this new arrangement. Please credit my account after each occasion.
May I wish you a happy, if ever so slightly less prosperous, New Year.
Your Humble Client...
(Remember: This was written by a 96 year old woman!)

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.