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Archive for June, 2011

Hotels improve customer service process using mobile apps

Thursday, June 30th, 2011
Mondrian Soho

A rising number of hotels are leveraging advances in mobile technology to implement process improvement in customer service, according to USA Today.

Hotels such as Mondrian Soho are working with third-party software developers to produce industry-specific applications that allow guests to order food, look up information about hotel amenities and local attractions, schedule wake-up calls, send messages to other guests, arrange a car service and more.

The initiative creates time for front desk staff who would have previously been occupied answering calls and transferring requests to appropriate departments. Additionally, it removes a step in the customer service process by routing guests' requests straight to their intended destinations. For example, room service orders are sent directly to kitchen staff.

"For a lot of hotels, it's an extension of the kiosk mentality," travel technology analyst Michael Planey told the news source. "The app economy is about giving people control of their … Read the rest

Summer Rental Company Offers Tips for a Perfect Florida Vacation

Wednesday, June 29th, 2011
Radisson Hotel Orlando - International Drive

If you are looking for great Orlando hotels near Disney World, then you need to look no further than the Radisson Hotel Orlando - International Drive. The bedding is something that the Radisson Hotel Corporation takes a lot of pride in, and more than 75% of the rooms come complete with the sleep number beds.

With the harsh winter months long gone, many families are now looking forward to sharing a memorable vacation, and Florida rental companies want to help you plan that perfect trip. With the children out of school and beautiful weather outside, many people find the warm summer months the perfect time to travel. This may mean that ideal vacation rentals are scarce and plane tickets will be expensive.

The perfect way to ensure that you snap up that gorgeous rental property is to look at Orlando vacation hotels. Orlando offers plenty of luxury hotels to choose from that are … Read the rest

Hotels offer services through tablet PCs

Tuesday, June 28th, 2011
Mondrian Soho

For a night of clubbing in Manhattan on a recent weekend, Seunghee Thomson turned to the iPad in her room at the Mondrian Soho to ask the hotel's concierge for a recommendation.

The concierge desk, which received her iPad message, soon called with a name and directions. "While I was waiting, I was thinking maybe I should call back to see if they got my message, but they called me back right away," says the fashion stylist from McLean, Va. "It's the first time I've had that experience in a hotel."

Mondrian Soho is one of several hotels — and airlines, too — that are distributing iPads and similar devices to customers in an effort to tap the buzz surrounding tablet computers. The effort is the latest by the travel industry to digitize a range of services that once required picking up the phone.

Using third-party software developers, … Read the rest

Baltimore Hilton is off to a promising start

Monday, June 27th, 2011
Hilton Baltimore

The city-owned Hilton Baltimore is far from a thrilling piece of architecture. Its massive bulk blocks the view of the eye-pleasing Bromo Seltzer Tower for fans sitting in Camden Yards. But as a convention hotel designed to boost the tourism trade and offer jobs to local residents, it is off to a promising, if slow-footed, start.

That is the financial takeaway from a recent audit of the hotel prepared for the city's Board of Estimates. Now in its third year of operation, the 757-room hotel is taking in enough revenue to pay its bills and its 454 employees and to service its bonds. Its occupancy rate for 2010, 62 percent, and its revenue per average room, a little over $125 in April, are slightly above those for other Baltimore hotels. Both those measures are climbing.

The picture, like the perspective from the baseball stadium, is not perfect. After figuring … Read the rest

One to One Hotel – The Village introduces Sennara Mediterranean Seafood restaurant

Sunday, June 26th, 2011
One to One Hotel - The Village

One to One Hotel - The Village recently unveiled its latest concept restaurant, Sennara, that promises to serve the freshest flavors the Mediterranean region. Sennara, fishhook in Arabic, located on the third floor of the first villa of the hotel, serves fresh seafood cooked in variety of Mediterranean styles including the most notable Lebanese techniques with Mezzeh and the infamous freshly baked bread.

One of the highlights of Sennara is the open display of fresh seafood including lobster and crab tanks where guests can choose their preferred catch of the day and cooking method. Jawad Saade, One to One Executive Assistant Manager, praised the outlet's quality-oriented approach, "Sennara is one of our pride additions to the One to One family of outlets; we have mobilized a team of highly experienced staff and a range of freshly imported high-quality produce to ensure that our guests have the most delightful culinary experience."

The restaurant fits up … Read the rest

A batik shop that has blossomed into a welcoming hotel

Saturday, June 25th, 2011
Hotel Susanthas

How nice to find a place to stay that has all the attributes of a boutique hotel but without the pretension and inflated prices.

Hotel Susanthas, adjoining the National Holiday Resort in Bentota, began life 40 years ago as the Susantha Batik Factory, a low-walled compound where brilliant batiks were produced for sale to tourists. Gradually it became a simple restaurant, expanding in 1982 to a guesthouse with seven rooms.

As more rooms and facilities were added it became known as Hotel Susanthas, blossoming successfully along with the flowers and trees in its glorious central garden in place of the batik factory.

Today it has 22 rooms including two new and fully equipped self-catering apartments.

The self-catering concept has been slow arriving in Sri Lanka, possibly because the infrastructure of supermarkets and specialist shops where tourists can buy their supplies, took time to spread beyond Colombo.

The two … Read the rest

UK first for city’s new hotel

Friday, June 24th, 2011
Holiday Inn Express Sheffield City Centre

Sheffield’s newest hotel has opened for business a month ahead of schedule, creating 40 new jobs.

The £10 million, 161-bed hotel is the first ‘next generation’ Holiday Inn Express Sheffield City Centre to be built in any major UK city.

The development was undertaken by Amber Hotels, which owns the Grade II listed Holiday Inn Royal Victoria Hotel, with backing from Yorkshire Bank Financial Solutions Centre, through its Investing for Growth initiative.

Amber Hotels director Hermann Beck said: “Trading conditions remain tough in the hotels sector in the regions but this new format of branded, limited-service hotel is outperforming the market because it meets consumer aspirations and offers real value. Because of this we feel that this is right time to open our Holiday Inn Express Hotel.

“Our Holiday Inn Royal Victoria Hotel has significant conference facilities but fewer bedrooms than the new hotel. Apart from the style of accommodation, the new hotel … Read the rest

Chicago Area Hotel Receives TripAdvisor 2011 Certificate of Excellence

Thursday, June 23rd, 2011
Marriott Chicago Southwest at Burr Ridge

The highest honor that any hotel can receive comes from its guests. Over the past year, these guests have been logging onto TripAdvisor® and raving about the Marriott Chicago Southwest at Burr Ridge. While these guest reviews are already an honor, TripAdvisor has formally recognized this Burr Ridge, IL hotel with a Certificate of Excellence. Certificates of Excellence are only awarded to hotels which garner consistent excellent (four star or more) reviews on TripAdvisor. This is the first time this Chicago area hotel has received this honor.

“We are delighted to have received the 2011 TripAdvisor Certificate of Excellence award,” said Kerry Mickelson, general manager at this Burr Ridge hotel. “We pay close attention to our TripAdvisor reviews- good or bad- and value what our guests are saying about our hotel and services. We pride ourselves in responding to our reviews and acting on the comments and feedback. This is an award we … Read the rest

West Sacramento Ramada Inn & Suites Named #1 Hotel for Business Travelers

Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011
Ramada Inn & Plaza Harbor West Sacramento

The Ramada Inn & Plaza Harbor West Sacramento today announced that TripAdvisor ranked it as the #1 business hotel in West Sacramento, rated "excellent" by travelers. In a study supported by TripAdvisor, 90% of travelers use on-line reviews to help determine hotel selection. West Sacramento Ramada Inn & Suites celebrates this recognition by honoring Business Travelers with a mid-week Manager's Reception.

"We are very excited to earn this recognition by travelers, it speaks volumes to our service, accommodations and location," states Rick Gabrielsen, CEO of Kupuna Hospitality. Under new Management, the Ramada Inn & Suites recently retained the services of Kupuna Hospitality to operate the 137 room full service West Sacramento hotel. The hotel hosts a mid-week Manager's Reception that welcomes all hotel guests to enjoy complimentary food and beverage. "It is our way of saying thank you for choosing us," says Denise Giddings, General Manager.

A premier full-service Sacramento hotel, the Ramada Inn … Read the rest

Hyatt Regency Coconut Point, a Leading Bonita Springs Hotel & Resort, Receives Eco-Innovation Award

Tuesday, June 21st, 2011
Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa

The AAA Four Diamond Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa, Florida is the recipient of the 2011 Chrysalis Award for the category of ecoinnovation.

The award, which is bestowed upon local individuals and businesses by the Lee County Visitor & Convention Bureau and the Greater Fort Myers Chamber of Commerce, was presented to General Manager Joe Murgalo at the second annual Celebration of Business & Tourism Awards Luncheon and Trade Show on May 19.

Chrysalis Award recipients were selected based upon the following criteria in their respective categories: how they have distinguished themselves in the community, the results of their efforts to promote the destination, their contributions to business and tourism partnerships for the overall benefit of Lee County and their work to foster growth and sustainability. Honorees were recognized for their commitment to excellence in improving community growth, creating job opportunities for Lee County citizens and encouraging more vacationers to visit the … Read the rest

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