Library Archives

 
Steven Ferry

PART I. Do you personally accept the "New Normal" for the hospitality industry and society as a whole - which is based on the premise that Covid-19 is a singularly dangerous threat that requires a complete change in our lives, when (as it turns out) it is actually on a par with the common flu and (as it turns out) every other incorrectly declared pandemic? Or do you want to understand what has happened and do whatever is in your power, big or small, to return to the old, fun and life-filled normal that has been snatched from us? READ MORE

James Downey

The hotel industry was hit hard by the COVID virus earlier on in 2020 and may be the last to completely recover. Cancellations have outpaced bookings by a 3 to 1 margin at third-party reservation websites and recovering lost revenue will be a serious hardship hotel companies may not be able to withstand. In the face of this monumental and unprecedented medical malaise, only those lodging companies that can adapt and adopt to providing guest-conscious safety and prevention measures will be the ones to see a light at the end of the tunnel so as to stave off catastrophic losses and/or bankruptcy. READ MORE

Jared Meyers

COVID-19 has truly exposed weaknesses in the foundation upon which our social and economic systems depend. The American Hotel and Lodging Association (AHLA) recently reported that since the US public health issue began escalating in mid-February, hotels have already lost more than $21 billion in room revenue. As a purpose-driven hospitality company, Legacy Vacation Resorts knew they had to navigate the crisis with the utmost care for people and the planet while maintaining a values-aligned approach to business. Their commitment to employees, customers, the environment and local communities guided each decision made as well as the development of new programs to best benefit all those impacted. READ MORE

Larry Spelts

Team members who work the hardest and often are paid the least are our room attendants. While there are opportunities for them to supplement their incomes with tips, these industrious individuals more often than not leave rooms empty handed. Even though there's a well-accepted method of calculating tips for servers across the U.S., hotel guests are either unclear on what an appropriate tip for a room attendant should be or simply unaware that it's customary to tip room attendants. With that being said, should hoteliers educate their guests on proper tipping etiquette to increase the likelihood of guests tipping room attendants? READ MORE

Philia Tounta

A tourism crisis occurs when circumstances in a destination pose a change which is potentially destructive to the destination and to its tourism industry. Destinations can exploit the window of opportunities linking destination branding to their crisis management strategies. Branding is an essential tool for positioning the destination, and in order to be effective, a need to re-study the destination marketing strategy is crucial. For the firm execution of place branding is essential to examine and map culture, customs, characteristics and every feature required that can benefit place image. Preferably, a place branding project intends to build an overall perceived image, apart from priorities in mission when it comes to targeting tourism, investments, etc. READ MORE

Travis Crabtree

At the beginning of 2020, the accommodations industry had been experiencing steady growth for a couple of years. However, with the introduction of COVID-19 there has been a very clear slowdown. Some hotels have been forced to cease operation while others have cut down significantly on staff. Whatever the case may be, there are still a few things those in the industry can be doing. Hotels can take cues from those who survived the 2008 recession, take time to create a response plan in the event this happens in the future and plenty more. This article will provide tips about what you can be doing now in the face of COVID-19. READ MORE

John Tess

Traditionally, downtowns have served as the commercial and entertainment centers of the city. Between the shops and restaurants, the local hotels provided a space for people to socialize and recline. In the present, the historic hotels of the traditional downtown have continued the legacy of providing a social space for locals and tourists alike. The modern parallel includes offering event spaces for parties and weddings. The Adelphi Hotel in Saratoga Springs, New York, one of the last surviving examples of the typical Saratoga Springs hotel from the resort town's zenith in the late-19th century, is an example. READ MORE

Christine Samsel

Christine Samsel, a shareholder, and Jesse Sutz, an associate with Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, provide "tools of the trade" to assist employers in crafting legally compliant business expense reimbursement policies. While many states have no specific requirements and default to federal law standards, the article outlines the more stringent requirements in various states including California, Illinois, New York and Massachusetts. The article dives into remote work considerations, especially now with the COVID-19 epidemic and how employers must pay particular attention to expense reimbursement requirements for remote workers. The article also discusses risk for employers and tips to avoid liability. Read more… READ MORE

Euan McGlashan

The reaction to the coronavirus pandemic has arguably been the most radical, vicious and unprecedented in history – we are currently in the worst economic slump since WWII. This is not just a financial crisis, it's a global crisis. Though it our industry has been forced to press pause, savvy hoteliers understand that how we react today will shape long-term guest loyalty, while creating unique opportunities for growth during a period of economic decline. Though we've never experienced anything like this, we must all stay positive. Now is the time to identify and resolve pain points to prevail, in wake of COVID-19. READ MORE

Brenda Fields

In navigating an unprecedented and epochal global crisis, each country, city, county, and province has had its own unique challenges and afflictions as well as experiencing common hardships with other countries and nations. Approaches varied. Some worked. Some didn't. But with them all, there was a steep learning curve that, at this writing, has not even come close to plateauing. In observing what was effective, it became apparent that leadership was the core component in how a country or a nation fared. This article will address some lessons learned about leadership at the onset of this global crisis. READ MORE

Janet Wright

After the COVID-19 crisis, consumers will likely be eager to get away and book a week's vacation at a resort property. For many, this could also mean scheduling at least a few days' worth of childcare during their stay. Many resorts offer activities and lessons for children, day camps, babysitting services and more. These offerings are appealing to hotel guests, but what happens if something goes wrong? In this article, we offer tips on how to design and maintain child-safe programs in a post-COVID-19 environment, common risks hotels must consider, and ways to protect the hotel should an incident occur. READ MORE

Mark Ricketts

All hospitality organizations strive to embody a corporate culture of service to guests and community. But how do we establish and perpetuate this conscious workplace culture-one that represents worthwhile goals and values as it builds strong connections within and without our organization. This article will discuss positive actions that can help drive our business and the ways they work to satisfy some of the most basic human attitudes and values. It is important to stress that a time of stress puts our corporate culture to its test. Will we pass? READ MORE

Ford Blakely

COVID-19 has impacted every area of business operations, but few have been as affected as communication. Experiencing spikes in incoming requests from anxious customers, even hotels that have had to close their doors temporarily have had to make dramatic changes to their communication strategies. Everything about guest communication has changed overnight. From the conversations brands are having with guests to the resources facilitating these conversations, and most notably the very impact that real-time communications, or the lack thereof, has on an organization's success. It's fair to say that real-time communication has gone from a competitive advantage to a survival strategy. READ MORE

Scott Lee

The rise of coronavirus has reset our rhythm as humans, and in slowing down and sheltering in place, we have had time to notice natural features in our surroundings and get back to basics. Social distancing may seem at odds with hospitality, but hotels can learn from the mindful and wellness-oriented activities people are using to ground and reset, from gardening and taking walks, to home cooking and baking, artistic pursuits and wholesome family activities. How might designers shape the 21st guest experience with spaces that nurture guests' inner worlds and push them past comfort zones, reaching deeper into nature? READ MORE

Scott Watson

Hoteliers need to be equipped with the most up-to-date and cost-effective business solutions available. Finding the right technology partner can be like finding a needle in a haystack, so it's important that hoteliers come equipped to get the most of out of their investments. Especially for management companies balancing numerous properties, switching to an outsourced business model can make all the difference. For hoteliers looking to cut-costs and streamline their portfolios back-office operations, outsourcing hotel accounting can help tighten up loose ends and improve your management company's financial health. With so many technology solutions available, it's important to know your options and how they can best help your company. READ MORE

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Coming up in September 2020...

Hotel Law: Protecting Guest Privacy

Every business is obligated to protect their customers from identity theft but unfortunately, data breaches have become all too common. In an effort to protect a guest's right to privacy and to safeguard their personal data, the European Union passed a General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) that could hold hotels legally liable for any breaches that expose a customer's sensitive personal information. Though the GDPR only pertains to EU citizens' data, any international business that mishandles their data can be legally responsible. Another legal issue of concern is the fight involving hotel "resort fees." Several states attorney generals have recently filed suit against two major hotel chains in an effort to litigate this practice. Their suit alleges that these companies are "engaged in deceptive and misleading pricing practices and their failure to disclose fees is in violation of consumer protection laws." The suit seeks to force the hotel chains to advertise the true price of their hotel rooms. There are several other legal issues that the industry is being forced to address. Sexual harassment prevention in the workplace is still top of mind for hotel employers-particularly in New York and California, which now statutorily require harassment training. Hotels and motels in California will also soon be required to train all their employees on human trafficking awareness. Immigration issues are also of major concern to hotel employers, especially in the midst of a severe labor shortage. The government is issuing fewer H2B visas for low-skilled workers, as well as J-1 visas for temporary workers. Though there is little hope for any comprehensive immigration reform, hotel lobbying groups are actively seeking legal remedies to alleviate this problem. These are just a few of the critical issues that the December issue of the Hotel Business Review will examine in the area of hotel law.