Development & Construction
Curtis Bashaw
  • Development & Construction
  • Making Historic Properties Relevant Today
  • Historic buildings are a window into the past. Unfortunately, few of them operate today as they were originally intended to, and, of those that do, only a handful have been successful at it. That 201-year-old hotel, by the way, is Congress Hall, which, with the exception of a politically-related closing early in its youth, has operated as a hotel and resort for nearly all of the last two centuries. Read on...

Susan Furbay
  • Development & Construction
  • Modular Construction: An Evolution in the Development of Modern Hotels
  • Though historically associated with residential and low-rise commercial buildings, modular construction has gone more upscale in recent years. What are the benefits, and what should hotel developers consider before going modular? The term “modular construction” once conjured images of small construction trailers or antiquated mobile home clusters just off the highway—not the most alluring draw for high-end developers and top-tier hotel companies, nor for their gentrified clientele. Today, however, the concept of modular construction has evolved, with developers across the U.S. adopting a modular approach to building 2- to 4-star select-service, full-service, and even boutique hotels. This article gives a brief overview of the evolution of modular construction, as well as the potential benefits and challenges in terms of cost, timelines, and financing when harnessing this method to build hotels. Read on...

Jan Kalanda
  • Development & Construction
  • Getting Ready to Sell: Eight Steps to Increasing Your Hotel's Value
  • To insure a sale at a good price, hospitality property owners should approach the market carefully and methodically. In this article, the authors review eight areas and recommend actions owners can take to improve the value of their property prior to sale. Selling your hotel or other hospitality property is a big step. You’ve invested time and resources in the property, so of course you hope for a good price when you go to market. To make a sale of you hotel happen at a good price you need to be sure you’ve optimized the property’s value before putting it on the market. Read on...

Sam Cicero
  • Development & Construction
  • Project Delivery Systems Value the Partners of a Renovation Team
  • There are various project delivery systems commonly used in today’s construction renovation projects, Design-Bid-Build, Construction Management and Design-Build. It’s important that an owner examines the pros and cons of each in order to determine which system works best for certain considerations such as project goals, costs to perform, timeline and risk management. In the Design-Bid-Build method, the owner engages entities such as the architect/engineer, designer and construction company separately. Since there is little if any connection between the different entities, this process requires a savvy owner who will be responsible for controlling all aspects of the design and construction process. One of the downfalls of this process, however, occurs if there are design errors for which the owner becomes at risk to the contractor. Read on...

Scott Acton
  • Development & Construction
  • The Benefits of Prefabricated Construction in High-Tourism Areas
  • In the hospitality and tourism industries, guests’ happiness reigns supreme. With ever-changing consumer demands and evolving technologies, new developments and renovations alike often cause disruptions to the normal function of businesses, impairing the public’s accessibility to the venue, or adjacent venues. Hence, construction timelines become a crucial issue with projects situated in high-density tourism areas. Improved time-efficiency minimizes the disturbances in local businesses’ operation and profitability. Yet, shorter timelines might come at a price of higher expenses on labor, machinery and materials. Read on...

Jeff Green
  • Development & Construction
  • A Limited-Service Hotel With Unlimited Connections
  • In biology, symbiotic mutualism describes a dynamic where two species living in close proximity to one another engage in a mutually beneficial relationship. Iconic examples include the oxpecker–small birds that feed on ticks and other parasites found on large mammals–and the clownfish, which live in and around sea anemones, enjoying the protection afforded by their stinging tentacles while providing the anemone with nutrients, and predator and parasite defense. The commercial real estate market is filled with a number of similarly structured relationships: mutually beneficial connections that serve to raise interest, drive traffic, provide resources and conveniences for shoppers and guests, and ultimately create a positive feedback loop that has a meaningful and sustained impact on the bottom line–for all parties. Read on...

Sam Cicero
  • Development & Construction
  • Performance Measures Can Help Hotel Owners and Managers Select the Right Renovation Contractor
  • When selecting renovation contractors, many hotel owners' and property managers’ decisions are based solely on the bottom line. In short, the lowest price bidder wins. Other hotel owners and managers, however, carefully consider the intricacies of their project’s scope and can assess the confidence they have in their selected contractor that the renovation can be finished on-time and on-budget. What these hotel owners appreciate that others don’t are the many value-added, non-financial advantages that a talented contractor brings to the project. For the purposes of this article I will refer to these advantages as 'performance measures'. Read on...

Bob Cerrone
  • Development & Construction
  • Distribution Partners are Critical to a Successful Renovation
  • The beginning of a hotel renovation marks the start of a ticking clock. When the clock runs out, renovation projects must be complete or the hotel faces consequences that range from losing reservations to unnecessary customer disruptions from a building still under construction during a major meeting or convention. These consequences are far greater than just inconveniencing guests; they mean poor reviews, lost revenue, and visitors who may never stay at the property again. Read on...

Kyle Rogg
  • Development & Construction
  • How Smart Design Changes Can Help Maximize a Hotel’s Operating Efficiency
  • Designing a hotel for operational efficiency can save owners money and increase a bottom line, while still offering guests aesthetically pleasing and comfortable rooms with competitive guests. In this article, Value Place's Chief Operating Officer and President Kyle Rogg will discuss how hotel owners can improve a hotel's efficiency through design changes in lighting, flooring, fixtures, geographic building designs, and energy management systems, as well as the monetary savings that can be achieved. Read on...

Rollin Bell
  • Development & Construction
  • Two Decades of Wall Coverings - What 20 Years in the Business Teaches About Quality and Value
  • If your hotel is 'behind the curve,' it might be time to start thinking about revitalizing your design. In addition to what you typically think about when you consider renovating, it's also important to reflect on the present condition of your wall coverings, especially in high-traffic areas such as your lobby. Creating an inviting lobby is crucial. It's an extension of your company's identity and, if it's a successful design, it can work to keep your employees and guests happy and loyal. People are usually willing to pay higher rates in exchange for a positive guest experience. Read on...

Julia Watson
  • Development & Construction
  • Is it Better to Renovate/Convert an Existing Asset or Build a New One?
  • For hoteliers, there are many variables to consider when trying to decide which is better – acquisition and renovation of an existing hotel or development of a new one? With so much to consider, it can be challenging to decipher which makes more financial sense. Objectively the end goal is to determine which will lead to profitability faster, but how is that determined? With the right plan of action to navigate the decision making process, the difficulty in reaching an educated decision can be greatly reduced. Regardless of your proposed project, there are a series of steps that can simplify the process when deciding to renovate or build. Read on...

Fred B. Roedel, III
  • Development & Construction
  • Location: Five Crucial Points to Address When Selecting a Hotel Location
  • The process of identifying, qualifying and acting on a new hotel location does not have to be a daunting or overwhelming task. In fact it can be a fun and exciting process as long as you establish your objectives and fully investigate the opportunities presented to you. Roedel Companies, through its construction management subsidiary, ROK Builders, is in the business of designing, building and renovating nationally branded hotels along the east coast of the United States, both for itself and independent investors. Over the past four years, ROK has completed over 40 major renovation projects along the east coast for independent investors. Learn about the five most crucial points to address when selecting a location for your hotel in this article. Read on...

Sara Fedele
  • Development & Construction
  • The Hotel Industry: Everything is Changing, But What Exactly is Changing?
  • What will be changing the hospitality business? How can we create effective business strategies? We all agree that running a business today is more complicated and requires more resources (financial, human, technological, etc.) than in the past. Have we ever asked ourselves why and what exactly it is that has really changed? The feedback that we receive from senior managers of international hotel corporations during think tanks and interactive workshops is always the same: "Everything is changing!"But what are the elements representing this “change”? Read on...

Fred B. Roedel, III
Julia Watson
  • Development & Construction
  • Hotel Development: The Risk of “Something for Nothing”
  • In a changed hospitality industry, post economic collapse, a new low-price standard has been set for construction services. How did construction pricing get to this point and what are the risks associated with hiring inexpensive labor to complete projects? We are a national general contractor specializing in hospitality construction services and are among a limited few who remain strong in the industry. Read on to learn about the conditions leading up to this point, where the industry is headed, and what to be mindful of for your next project. Read on...

MAY: Eco-Friendly Practices: The Value of Sustainability

Eric Ricaurte

In 2011, we visited the 10 hotels contracted in the room block for the Greenbuild conference in Toronto. As part of their award-winning sustainable event program, the conference organizers embedded green practices into the contract language for these hotels, who either had to comply with the requirements, explain their reason why they couldn’t implement them, or pay a $1,000 fine. Part of our consulting work was to gather the data and confirm some of the practices on-site. Read on...

Susan Tinnish

Hotels brands have actively engaged in large-scale efforts to become more environmentally friendly. Individual hotels have made great strides on property. Many significant large-scale eco-initiatives s are most easily built initially into the infrastructure and design of the building and surrounding areas. Given that the adaptation of these large-scale changes into the existing asset base is expensive and disruptive, hotels seek different ways to demonstrate their commitment to sustainability and eco-friendly practices. One way to do so is to shift the focus from large-scale change to “small wins.” Small wins can help a hotel create a culture of sustainability. Read on...

Shannon Sentman

Utility costs are the second largest operating expense for most hotels. Successfully reducing these expenses can be a huge value-add strategy for executives. Doing this effectively requires more than just a one-time investment in efficiency upgrades. It requires ongoing visibility into a building’s performance and effectively leveraging this visibility to take action. Too often, efficiency strategies center on a one-time effort to identify opportunities with little consideration for establishing ongoing practices to better manage a building’s performance ongoing. Read on...

Joshua Zinder, AIA

Discussions of sustainability in the hospitality industry have focused mainly on strategies at the level of energy-efficient and eco-friendly adjustments to operations and maintenance. These "tweaks" can include programs to reduce water usage, updating lighting to LEDs, campaigns to increase guest participation in recycling, and similar innovative industry initiatives. Often overlooked—not only by industry experts but even by hotel operators and designers—are possibilities for hotel design and construction that can make a property truly sustainable from the get-go. Read on...

Coming Up In The June Online Hotel Business Review




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Feature Focus
Sales & Marketing: Who Owns the Guest?
Hotels and OTAs are, by necessity, joined at the hip and locked in a symbiotic relationship that is uneasy at best. Hotels require the marketing presence that OTAs offer and of course, OTAs guest’s email when it sends guest information to a hotel, effectively allowing OTAs to maintain “ownership” of the guest. Without ready access to guest need hotel product to offer their online customers. But recently, several OTAs have decided to no longer share a data, hotels are severely constrained from marketing directly to a guest which allows them to capture repeat business – the lowest cost and highest value travelers. Hotels also require this data to effectively market to previous guests, so ownership of this data will be a significant factor as hotels and OTAs move forward. Another issue is the increasing shift to mobile travel bookings. Mobile will account for more than half of all online travel bookings next year, and 78.6% of them will use their smartphone to make those reservations. As a result, hotels must have a robust mobile marketing plan in place, which means responsive design, one-click booking, and location technology. Another important mobile marketing element is a “Click-to-Call” feature. According to a recent Google survey, 68% of hotel guests report that it is extremely/very important to be able to call a hotel during the purchase phase, and 58% are very likely to call a hotel if the capability is available in a smartphone search. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.