Hand with compass at mountain road at sunset sky in Kazakhstan, central Asia

Lever Your Location

There is only one aspect of your property that you absolutely cannot change – your physical address. Renovate, replace staff, add new operations, re-flag or re-brand, it makes no difference; you are where you are! Your location is uniquely yours, so why not make the most of it? When a guest arrives – especially for the first time – they rarely have the in-depth knowledge of your neighborhood to go about on their own without some guidance. While nowadays there are numerous online resources that can give visitors a broad overview of the top highlight, your guests will nevertheless want your help in discovering what truly makes your area special. The best part about levering your location for better guest satisfaction is that becoming the local expert is not overly complex. However, it will require some leg work on behalf of your team to break ground for your guests, find …

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Back view of man presenting to students at a lecture theatre

A Hotel School That Supports Alternate Lodging Providers?

When asked to name a hotel school, what immediately comes to mind? Perhaps your thoughts run to the prestigious École Hôtelière de Lausanne in Switzerland or the stateside Cornell University School of Hotel Administration (now a part of The SC Johnson College of Business). Ranking fourth in the QS 2017 World University Rankings for Hospitality and Leisure Management is Les Roches Global Hospitality Education with over 3,000 students spread across three campuses, tremendous global diversification in that no single country claims more than 10% of the student population and a very entrepreneurial outlook. Nicolas Graf David Fudge This is a hotel school advocating that its students learn and embrace everything there is to know about alternate lodging providers and all the various ways in which the sharing economy might disrupt the hospitality industry. To elucidate why this is the case and what established hoteliers can glean from this shift in …

lmaadminA Hotel School That Supports Alternate Lodging Providers?
Electronics and housekeeping concept. Isolated over white. Contains clipping path

The Housekeeping Training Revolution

Modern advances in employee training and ongoing retraining have such profound benefits that it’s near impossible for any senior hotelier to disregard their implementation. First among these advantages is what’s paid forward to your guests – improved compliance with SOPs, faster service, better staff demeanor and, ultimately, better customer satisfaction. Then there are the back-end benefits which also impact the bottom line – better team morale, less employee turnover, greater empowerment, increased productivity and decreased onboarding costs. Of course, this all relates to technology – putting your internal curriculum onto an online portal, thereby enabling e-learning. It works because it fosters an environment of microlearning – that is, allowing your team to learn at their own pace and in bite-sized, modular chunks, both of which are better for knowledge retention over the classical intensive and condensed period of instruction. Additionally, by putting your curriculum online, it frees up your supervisors’ …

lmaadminThe Housekeeping Training Revolution
A tropical modern villa exterior view with built in sofa

Defining Modern Hotel Luxury In Five Parts

How many times have you heard the word ‘luxury’ in a hotel description? It seems to be one of the most abused words in the hoteliers’ dictionary! I’ve seen many hotels claim to be luxurious, when at most they are just slightly better than average. There seems to be no clear definition for luxury. Looking for some clarity in the dictionary, the word ‘luxury’ come from Old French luxurie and the Latin luxuria or luxus, meaning excess. In other words, something that is luxurious is an inessential – a desirable item that is more than basic but not a necessity. In keeping with this definition, the basics of our product/service offerings are definitely not luxuries. These include cleanliness both for rooms and public areas, free and fast wifi, comfortable beds, sufficient amenities, generous hot water for showers, enough towels, quiet HVAC, good lighting for all needs, entertainment facilities, and security. …

lmaadminDefining Modern Hotel Luxury In Five Parts
Arrangement of different types of baked foods

Give Us Each Day Our Daily Bread Basket

I intentionally played upon this line from The Lord’s Prayer (Luke 11: 1-4) for the title of this article in order to underscore the importance that bread plays in Western culture. When we go into a restaurant, a bread basket is all but an expectation. If we must ask for it, then there is a service problem! And for those restaurants who feel as though they can charge extra for this item, be warned that you certainly aren’t winning customers over with your penny-pinching approach to F&B. Knowing how profound a role bread has played throughout the course of civilization, still to this day nothing sets the stage for a great meal better than a freshly prepared loaf. The smell of baked bread and the satisfaction of physically handling its chewy texture are both as communal as they are primal. Yet, for many hoteliers, bread is given mere ‘lip service’ …

lmaadminGive Us Each Day Our Daily Bread Basket
Irritated young businessman at the office, feeling his back tired after working at laptop, uncomfortable chair, feeling itching, difficulty sitting, touching his left side with pained face expression

Raising Awareness For RSIs

An important issue affecting many hotels that merits further discussion is repetitive strain injuries (RSIs), especially those with an aging workforce. A combined aggravation of both the nervous and musculoskeletal system, an RSI is typically caused by repetitive tasks or those which put the body in an awkward position. There are many different types of RSIs, but as I am not a doctor, the diagnoses and exact syndromes are not the focus here. Rather, it is vital that all hoteliers recognize how RSIs may develop in a workplace setting so that steps can then be taken to reduce or prevent their occurrence altogether. RSIs can not only hamper an employee’s ability to perform at his or her best but they can also have a toxic effect on those closest to the afflicted individual. Being a true leader means caring for your team and their health, and thus corrective actions must be …

lmaadminRaising Awareness For RSIs
Dubai, UAE - September 11, 2013: The Atlantis the Palm hotel and limousines. It is located on man-made island Palm Jumeirah.

Mutual Success Through Product Placement

Have you ever watched a movie and noticed that all the cops and robbers were driving only one brand of car? Or that every actor on a television show only drinks exclusively Coke or Pepsi but never both? Product placement has been part of the Hollywood scene for decades as savvy producers must find ever-creative ways to squeeze every ounce of profit out of their films – something that looks especially worthwhile when such brands are willing to pay upfront and thereby offset the usual cashflow issues of movie production. After all, if the script doesn’t specify the specific type of automobile being driven, smartphone adjacent to the name actor’s ear or beverage being consumed, why not earn some decent bucks in the process? More recently, hoteliers have started to realize that hotels can offer perfect symmetry with many brands that want trial from their target audience, especially when those …

lmaadminMutual Success Through Product Placement
Ties in a man fashion store.

Is The Necktie Making A Comeback?

Call me a traditionalist. Each morning as I walk past my tie rack, I pause to admire the vividly colored collection of Ferragamo and Brioni masterpieces, all neatly hanging in ordered rows and beckoning me to ‘tie one on’. Alas, though, the office-casual nature at my workplace is far more amiable to the sweater and jeans attire, with nary a collared shirt even under the slightest of considerations. And so whenever the opportunity comes my way, a tie is knotted around my neck without a moment’s hesitation, partly for the pleasure of dressing up but also for the nostalgia of a bygone era when this piece was all but compulsory. Being of a more ‘scholarly’ age, donning a suit and tie comes naturally to me. Looking in the mirror, I selfishly feel at least a bit more professional in demeanor with a psychological boost in tow. What is equally refreshing …

lmaadminIs The Necktie Making A Comeback?
fire in a high-rise building.

Mitigating the Risk of a Fire

In the past few months, my neighborhood in Toronto has seen two, five-alarm fires. Fortunately, in both cases, there was no loss of life nor personal injuries reported. In one instance, a residence only a few months after completion experienced an attic conflagration, destroying a family’s dream of a domestic paradise. As for the other, a recently renovated, century-old racquet club inferno left more than a thousand members ‘in the cold’ with no preferred meeting place or exercise facility. Not being a member of the fire marshal’s office, I can only surmise the causes and the full extent of structural damage. Both events share a common result, though – unanticipated displacement and a loss in revenue for the business. As a hotel general manager, no doubt a property fire would be among your worst nightmares. In your position, you have a dual responsibility. First is to mitigate any risk of …

lmaadminMitigating the Risk of a Fire
Happy female workers cleaning company ready to start work

Housekeeping is a Contact Sport

Every hotelier knows that housekeeping is a vital aspect of any property’s operations. All it takes is just one look at an online review site to see just how sensitive guests are to errors in this regard. Even though we all know how important the role of the housekeeper is, seldom do we managers know how to actually do what they do so that we can truly empathize with the issues they encounter on a daily basis. I decided to change that this past month by spending a day working alongside (shadowing, really) an experienced team member of a luxury hotel property. I was asked not to reveal the name of the property nor the housekeeping staff member who I will refer to as Donna (obviously not her real name). Nursing a single malt as I write this, my back is still aching and I remain in awe of her …

lmaadminHousekeeping is a Contact Sport