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June 11, 2013
AH&LA SmartBrief Special Report
News for hotel and lodging professionals
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Technology in Hospitality, Part 1
The hospitality industry must stay informed about the latest technology trends and devices flowing into an already boisterous market. This part 1 of a 2-part special report looks at a wide variety of ways hoteliers are using technology to entice new customers and keep existing ones.

Part 2 of this Special Report will hit your inbox on Thursday, June 13.

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Guest Experiences 

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Hospitality Technology 
  • Exec: Walt Disney bracelets will enhance park experience
    Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Chairman Tom Staggs presented the firm's MagicBand technology at the All Things Digital technology conference, saying that the device would offer more personalization and improve some park features. The device will replace park tickets and hotel room keys after its debut in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. The bracelets can be used to arrange a meeting with park characters and even notify them of a guest's name in advance. "It's six or 10 pieces of paper out of your hand. As importantly, this allows us to unlock more special things for you, depending on what level you want to participate," Staggs said. Los Angeles Times (tiered subscription model)/Company Town blog (5/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Column: Mobile optimization beats making a hotel app
    A hotel Web page optimized for viewing on a mobile device is more efficient at capturing bookings than a personalized application, writes Babs Davidson of Blue Magnet Interactive. "While apps can be helpful tools in the booking process, they don't translate into getting heads in beds the way that a mobile-friendly hotel website will," Davidson writes. The Blue Magnet Blog (5/30) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Choice Hotels focuses on in-house technology
    Steve Joyce, CEO of Choice Hotels International, says that the company is committed to making technology a focus and that it recently moved operations in-house to a data center in Phoenix. "It sets the table so we can begin to execute moving forward on big leaps we want to make," said Eben Hewitt, the newly appointed chief technology officer. "I don?t think you can outsource innovation. You?ve got to have subject matter experts in house." (5/16) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

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Market Trends 
  • Marriott International to bring AC Hotels brand to U.S.
    Marriott International today will unveil plans to expand its mid-segment AC Hotels brand in the U.S. AC Hotels will target the rising demographic of tech-savvy, value-conscious young business travelers, says Brian King, global brand officer for Marriott Endorsed Brands. "This generation ... they grew up with Gilt, Target,, Apple. These brands are affordable and stylish and they're great-looking and they feel curated. And that's what AC Hotels is," King says. USA Today (6/3) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Commune Hotels launches value-oriented Tommie brand
    Commune Hotels & Resorts has unveiled Tommie Hotels -- a new hotel brand aimed at value-conscious, tech-savvy millennials. "Offering value without compromising basic amenities in the lifestyle sector, Tommie will be the perfect complement to Thompson and Joie de Vivre, and is positioned to become the blueprint for the next evolution of hotels in gateway cities," said Commune Hotels & Resorts CEO Niki Leondakis. Development of the first two Tommie hotels, both in New York, is underway. (5/29) , (free registration) (5/29) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story

Service your customers anywhere. From the outdoor deck to the coziest corner booth, the downstairs lounge to the rooftop bar, and in-seat ordering at sporting events, Mobile MICROS handheld technology allows you to service your customers wherever they are enjoying your hospitality. Food & beverage tools from MICROS make your staff more efficient.

Product announcements appearing in SmartBrief are paid advertisements and do not reflect actual AH&LA endorsements. The news reported in SmartBrief does not necessarily reflect the official position of AH&LA.
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