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News for hotel and lodging professionals | March 5, 2013

  • Special Report, Part 1: The Hotel Guest Experience
    The customer experience at hotels continues to evolve as needs change in the hospitality industry. Hotels should focus on the emotional experience of visitors, and not just the physical experience, to make each stay memorable.

    Companies such as Disney excel at creating an overall customer experience that turns customers into advocates for the company. Creating a memorable experience starts as soon as the guest walks in the door. A great welcome can tip the scales, which makes hiring employees with the right attitude a key factor for hospitality success. Read more here from

    Part 2 of this special report will appear in your inbox on Thursday, March 7.

    If you don't receive the AH&LA SmartBrief on a daily basis, we urge you to sign up for our timely e-newsletter. The AH&LA SmartBrief delivers the industry news you need to know directly to your inbox -- for FREE. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

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  Guest Experiences 
  • Hotel bars upgrade drinks and entertainment
    Gone are the days of watery cocktails and stale peanuts at the hotel bar and in are expensive, over-the-top drinks served up with some good old-fashioned flair. Hoteliers are hoping the handcrafted cocktails using specialty ice, exotic ingredients and myriad garnishes will draw in locals and visitors alike. USA Today/Hotel Check-in blog (2/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Hotels offer more than a night's stay with activity packages
    Hotels typically do not see huge gains in revenue by offering unique packages, but packages can help differentiate a property and keep guests returning. "Doing something unique gives them an incentive to come back," said Fabio Berto, director of business development at Rome Cavalieri, Waldorf Astoria Hotels & Resorts, in Italy. The hotel offers a "Gladiator Training" program through which guests can learn how to fight with swords. Other hotels offer activities such as cycling and windsurfing with leaders in those sports, as well as more leisurely activities. The Wall Street Journal (2/20) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Column: 10 elements of top-notch guest service
    Developing a hotel atmosphere that exudes warmth, efficiency and value in its amenities and staff is key to securing guest loyalty, Alan Campbell writes. "The best advice that is true and to the point is this: 'If you don't take care of your customers, somebody else will,' " Campbell writes. (2/22) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
Build Guest Loyalty and Gain Repeat Visitors with Access to via an easy link on your property's website enables you to provide your guests With updated around the clock news. Or you can provide your guests redemption code cards upon check-in to give them the added benefit of accessing WSJ Digital Plus both on and off premises. View the video and get started today.
  Hospitality Technology 
  • Hyatt "lab hotels" swap front desk for mobile-equipped Andaz "hosts"
    Hyatt explores technology with its eight "lab hotels," four of which are in the U.S. One concept involved associates moving around the lobby with iPads to expedite check-in and assist guests, eliminating the need for a desk. An Andaz "host" acts as "doorman, concierge, front office and bell attendant," whose work can includes greeting guests, carrying luggage and more. Hotel Management online (2/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Market Trends 
  • Some hotels want guests to come "home," stay awhile
    Hotel suites may look a lot more like home, as hotels are designing them to be more comfortable with features to accommodate longer stays. Best Western is breaking into the suite segment, as other chains offer extended-stay options as well. "The rooms allow the guest to completely unpack and set up shop no matter how long you're going to be there," said Loren Nalewanski, vice president and global brand manager for TownePlace Suites by Marriott. "[It] makes it easy for business to happen even though they might not be at their workplace." (2/27) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Celebrity chefs can enhance room-service menus
    The Chatwal in New York is among the many hotels that offer unique dishes for room service prepared by a celebrity chef. Others include The London West Hollywood in California, Nobu Hotel in Las Vegas and The Surrey in New York, this feature says. HotelChatter (2/28) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Renaissance in Washington, D.C., debuts $30M renovation
    Sunstone Hotel Investors poured $30 million into renovations at the Renaissance in Washington, D.C., which is debuting its new look. In addition to spalike guestroom bathrooms, an in-room iPod docking station, Aveda spa products, and 40-inch HDTV, the hotel brought a new concept to the lobby. Breaking Travel News (2/25) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

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