Seventeen Guestroom Pet Peeves

Seventeen Guestroom Pet Peeves

The guestroom is the crux of the hotel experience, and there are many small things that can set a guest off but are often overlooked. Call this my pet peeve list, but see if you don’t agree. This list is not in priority order. Complex WiFi set ups. It is bad enough that I have(…)




How To Capture Chinese Outbound Business

How To Capture Chinese Outbound Business

Outbound travel from China is a topic I find deeply fascinating. Living in North America, my exposure to what’s actually happening on the ground across the pond is limited. That’s why it’s nice to have friends in higher places, specifically Ernie Diaz, the director of online strategies at Web Presence in China, to discuss some of(…)




In Vino Veritas, Part XVI: The Importance of Vintage

In Vino Veritas, Part XVI: The Importance of Vintage

“A 2008 Chateau X? Or how about the 2009? Who cares about the year, just give me the one that tastes the best!” is a conversation you have probably overheard at a restaurant before. It might have even been you uttering these words at one point. Or, instead of asking for the best of multiple(…)




A Second Black Friday

A Second Black Friday

This time last year, Black Friday set the record in terms of retail revenue earned in a single 24-hour period. Another record was probably set with respect to total advertising dollars spent and promotional costs accrued. There’s no two ways around it — Black Friday is a feeding frenzy, although we’ll have to wait until(…)




IHMRS 2013: A Wealth of Ideas

IHMRS 2013: A Wealth of Ideas

IHMRS, held earlier this month in New York City is the granddaddy of hotel trade shows with a long pedigree. I have attended the event off and on for more than 20 years and can recall its heyday, when the show covered almost two complete floors of the Javits Center. The Internet (alternate forms of(…)




Four Tips For Today’s Hotel Websites

Four Tips For Today’s Hotel Websites

As a judge of the HSMAI Adrian Awards, I’ve had the pleasure of gazing at this year’s crop of the best in web design. I do not evaluate nor rank sites built by my own company, although it is refreshing to note that they share a healthy number of the winning traits described below. Judging(…)




Five Keys to Millennial Food & Beverage Success

Five Keys to Millennial Food & Beverage Success

The last decade or so has witnessed the emergence of a new era of dining with profound and dire implications for hotels across the world. Namely, internet-born resources have made it possible for any guest to readily locate a number of local eateries, making it harder for a property’s onsite restaurants to gain traction amongst(…)




Better Than Swiss Chocolate

Better Than Swiss Chocolate

The Kempinski brand name, approaching 100 years old, is renowned throughout Europe, Asia and the Middle East, and yet it still maintains an air of mystery about it. My recent trip to Geneva prompted me to stay at the Grand Kempinski rather than a more recognizable product like the Four Seasons just a few buildings(…)




The Brass Tacks on Chinese Travellers

The Brass Tacks on Chinese Travellers

Chinese is booming and has been for coming up on 25 years now. As you’d expect from that, there’s a proliferating bourgeoisie that demands great traveling experiences. With a population of over 1.4 billion, this nouveau middle class is a demographic that should be pique can keen hotelier. And yet, as a nation, China is(…)




Dealing With A Midweek Holiday

Dealing With A Midweek Holiday

Oh, the headaches of the Gregorian 365-day calendar. It makes sense to us because we’ve grown up with it, but it can be a pain for party planners when certain holidays fall on inopportune days of the week. On the imminent horizon is Halloween, which this year falls on a Thursday. Then there are other(…)




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