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...

SEPTEMBER: Hotel Group Meetings: Blue Skies Ahead

Jay Spurr

Meeting planners have more than enough to think about when it comes to searching for the perfect venue – and eco-consciousness is increasingly making its way top of mind for many. It is currently estimated that the average hotel guest generates 2.2 pounds of waste each night of their stay. And, with the meetings and event industry recently being deemed as the second most wasteful sector in the United States by the EPA, we at JW Marriott Austin knew we had to go above and beyond to deliver more efficient meetings and events with the lowest possible carbon footprint. Read on...

Del Robinette

Engagement and commitment are at the core of our professional lives in a 24 hour a day, 7 day a week operation. No matter the size or complexity of the box, engagement and our commitments should be a core fundamental that not only surfaces in our every interaction, but guides and directs our proactive decision making and our strategies and executions. Hospitality 101 teaches us as hospitality professionals, to engage with our guests, to make eye contact at 10 feet, to speak within 5, to escort when possible and to use our guests name in conversation. Read on...

Katie  Davis

I had a bit of an “out of body” experience recently. I was attending a corporate meeting, which was held in a hotel meeting room. As usual, I was multi-tasking for most of the meeting. Doing my best to remain engaged with the meeting content, while simultaneously managing an ever-growing email inbox and “To Do” list. During a break, I was pacing outside the meeting room, on the phone with my office, when I noticed some snacks and beverages set-up adjacent to the meeting room entrance. Read on...

Deirdre Martin Yack

Meeting planning in today’s world is more complex than ever. Whether you’re a planner or a supplier, our jobs are now 24/7. We are dealing with shorter lead times than ever, tighter budgets (on both sides), and expectations based on the perfection projected by social media and reality TV. Our job is no longer simply about dates, space, rate – we now need to compete at a world-class level on a daily basis. As a supplier, it takes extreme creativity at the venue level. Starting with the initial design, event space must be as flexible, innovative and as Instagram-worthy as possible. Read on...

Coming Up In The October Online Hotel Business Review




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Feature Focus
Revenue Management: Technology and Big Data
Like most businesses, hotels are relying on technology and data to drive almost every area of their operations, but perhaps this is especially true for hotel Revenue Managers. There has been an explosion of technology tools which generate a mountain of data – all in an effort to generate profitable pricing strategies. It falls to Revenue Managers to determine which tools best support their operations and then to integrate them efficiently into their existing systems. Customer Relationship Management, Enterprise Resource Planning, and Online Reputation Management software are basic tools; others include channel managers, benchmark reports, rate shopping tools and review systems, to name a few. The benefits of technology tools which automate large segments of a Revenue Manager’s business are enormous. Freed from the time-consuming process of manual data entry, and having more accurate data available, allows Revenue Managers to focus on analysis, strategies and longer-term decision-making. Still, for most hotels, the amount of data that these tools generate can be overwhelming and so another challenge is to figure out how to effectively utilize it. Not surprisingly, there are some new tech tools that can help to do exactly that. There are cloud-based analytics tools that provide a comprehensive overview of hotel data on powerful, intuitive dashboards. The goal is to generate a clear picture, at any moment in time, of where your hotel is at in terms of the essentials – from benchmarking to pricing to performance – bringing all the disparate streams of data into one collated dashboard. Another goal is to eliminate any data discrepancies between finance systems, PMS, CRM and forecasting systems. The October issue of the Hotel Business Review will address all these important developments and document how some leading hotels are executing their revenue management strategies.