Business & Finance

MFHA Hosts First New Orleans Career Enhancement Symposium

"Face the Challenges: Building a Future"

NEW ORLEANS, LA, August 24, 2006. Celebrating its 10th Anniversary, the Multicultural Foodservice and Hospitality Alliance (MFHA), a non-profit organization promoting the economic benefits of diversity in the industry, will host a mini-conference in New Orleans October 4 - 5, 2006. Held at The Sheraton New Orleans Hotel, the first New Orleans Straight Talk Career Enhancement Symposium will offer workshops and information sessions aimed at maximizing the potential of mid-level managers. Welcome ceremonies will be led by Leah Chase, co-owner and renowned chef at New Orleans' famous "Dooky Chase" restaurant, and Gerry Fernandez, President and Founder of MFHA. The curriculum of this 2-day event will offer practical communication tools and guides on the art of cultivating multicultural talent and the initiating and leveraging of employee affinity groups. The symposium will also provide essential professional development and educational information through a variety of speakers, panelists and interactive discussions.

"The foodservice and hospitality industry in New Orleans continues to face a variety of challenges as a result of Hurricane Katrina. Just one of those challenges is the rapidly changing composition of the New Orleans workforce following the storm. Thus, it is now more important than ever that multicultural workplace training be implemented not only to bridge communication with the Hispanic community but to also encourage and develop African Americans and other minorities to grow from hourly employees to industry and civic leaders," stated Gerry Fernandez, MFHA founder and president.

The October seminar is a "must attend" for mid-level managers and directors of color, non-minority executives working in diversity-rich settings and other professionals interested in creating a diverse workplace through the development of minorities. Attendance at the Symposium is on a first-come, first-serve basis and is limited to 300 persons. The cost to register is $250 per person and can be done by visiting www.mfha.net. Registration is open now. For more information on the Straight Talk Career Enhancement Symposium in New Orleans including a complete agenda, visit www.mfha.net.

Coming Up In The July Online Hotel Business Review




Feature Focus
Hotel Spa: Branding Around the Concept of Wellness
According to a recent Spafinder Wellness survey, 85 percent of people have returned from a vacation less rejuvenated than when they left. Perhaps because of this, travelers also indicated that they now expect "wellness" programs to be provided by their travel destinations - 87 percent want healthier food, 82 percent expect spa/massage programs, 82 percent desire nature experiences, 73 percent prefer eco-conscious properties, 70 percent want gyms with cardio and weights, 54 percent would like healthy sleep programs and 47 percent are seeking meditation and mindfulness classes. To accommodate these travelers, hotel properties are branding around the concept of wellness. As a result, hotels are offering more spectacular gyms; more inspiring fitness classes; more expert-led, local runs and hikes; more free workout gear, bikes and pedometers; more in-room virtual training; and even personal trainers and nutritionists. For their part, hotel spas are also continuing to upgrade and innovate when it comes to providing expanded services to their guests. Some spas are offering more weightless flotation tanks, chambers and pools to combat the effects of gravity and others are incorporating new technologies like anti-gravity massage beds that simulate the experience of floating on a cloud. Some spas are offering Rest and Renew sleep programs, which include personal sleep consultations, sleep-inducing massages, total blackout rooms, extensive pillow menus and sleep-aiding snacks. Demand for natural, organic skin products is still very strong, and the same is true for aromatherapy products which can now being customized and personalized based on individual guest preferences. The July issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these trends and developments and how hotel spas are integrating them into their operations.