Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Carrier

Lou Carrier

President, Distinctive Hospitality Group

Lou Carrier is President of Distinctive Hospitality Management (DHM), a Massachusetts based hotel and restaurant management and consulting company as well as President of Distinctive Hospitality Group (DHG), a hospitality ownership alliance. Prior to forming DHG, Mr. Carrier was Chief Operating Officer of theWit hotel brand in Chicago, IL. In this role Lou was responsible for all branding initiatives, sales and marketing strategies and organizational structure. The hotel has been widely considered one of the most successful new hotel concepts in the US since it launched in 2009 and was the fastest hotel in North America to achieve AAA Four Diamond status. Prior to the opening of theWit hotel Mr. Carrier created the BOKX 109 American Prime restaurant concept in Newton, MA in 2008. The restaurant has won numerous awards and accolades during its first years and remains one of the highest grossing restaurants residing in an Intercontinental Hotel Group property in the Americas. Prior to returning to Massachusetts in in early 2008 Mr. Carrier spent nearly eight years in senior developmental and organizational leadership roles in the creation of the upscale Hard Rock Hotel brand. As opening General Manager of the Hard Rock Hotel @ Universal Orlando, FL Mr. Carrier delivered AAA Four Diamond status to the 650-room resort within its first six months, and for four years it was the top performing hotel in the brand. From there he was chosen as Managing Director in charge of developing the Hard Rock Hotel in San Diego, CA before being selected to coordinate the extensive expansion and upgrade to the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, NV in 2005 as Executive Vice President. Mr. Carrier spent a total of 8 years with Loews Hotels in Washington, DC and Florida in the roles of General Manager, Regional Director of Food and Beverage and Corporate Task Force leader. Prior to joining Loews Lou spent 9 years with Stouffer Hotels and Renaissance Hotels at their flagship property, the AAA Five Diamond Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC where he held 8 progressive management positions. Mr. Carrier's desire for DHG is to build a portfolio of 15-20 unique hotels in the New England area over the next five years.

Mr. Carrier can be contacted at 508-651-8300 or lcarrier@distinctivehospitalitygroup.com

Coming up in August 2020...

Food & Beverage: New Technological Innovations

In the past few years, hotel food and beverage departments have experienced significant growth. Managers are realizing just how much revenue potential this sector holds, both in terms of additional revenue and as a means to enhance the guest experience. As a result, substantial investments are being made in F&B operations as a way to satisfy hotel guests but also to keep pace with the competition. Though it has been a trend for many years, the Farm-to-Table movement shows no signs of abating. Hotel chains are abandoning corporate restaurants and are instead partnering with local chefs to create locally-influenced dining options. Local, farm-sourced ingredients paired with specialty beverages or local wine also satisfies the increasing demand from Millennial travelers who are eager to travel sustainably and contribute to a positive impact. A farm-to-table F&B program also helps to support the local economy, which builds community goodwill. Also popular are "Self-Serv" and "Grab & Go" options. These concepts stem from an awareness that a guest's time is limited and if a hotel can supply them with fast, fresh, food and beverage choices, then so much the better for them. Plus, by placing these specialty kiosks in areas that might be traditionally under-utilized (the lobby, for instance), they can become popular destination locations. Of course, there are new technological innovations as well. In-room, on-screen menus allow guests to order from any restaurant on the property, and some hotels are partnering with delivery companies that make it possible for guests to order food from any restaurant in the area. Also, many hotels are implementing in-room, voice-activated devices, so ordering food via an AI-powered assistant will soon become mainstream as well. The August issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these developments and document what some leading hotels are doing to expand this area of their business.