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Hotel Industry News In Brief
Some current conversation starters…
Qantas has confirmed a crocodile escaped from its cage in the cargo hold during a flight between Brisbane and Melbourne last week.
The reptile was safely re-captured when the aircraft landed in Melbourne, an airline spokesman told The Age. Although unsure of the crocodile's size, the spokesman said it "was not fully grown". The airline and cargo handling company Australian Air Express has launched an investigation into how the crocodile escaped its cage.
Wondering just where the germs lurk when you check into a hotel? They may be not always where you'd expect.
Hotel guests actually stand a better chance of picking up bacteria turning on the TV or lights than opening the bathroom door, a recent study suggests. Some of the most contaminated surfaces include the somewhat obvious, such as the toilet basin and bathroom floor, but also the TV remote control and the main light switch, says a small study by researchers at the University of Houston, Purdue University and the University of South Carolina. It was presented at a meeting in June of the American Society for Microbiology. In most of the nine rooms sampled in three states, levels of bacteria on the remotes and light switches exceeded hospital standards for surfaces in patients' rooms and bathrooms, says Sheryl Kline, associate dean at the University of South Carolina's school of hotel, restaurant and tourism management . Though high levels of bacteria don't raise an alarm in themselves, researchers' test swabs of remotes, light switches and bathroom floors all contained coliform bacteria, associated with fecal contamination, which at high levels points to health risks. Some of the cleanest surfaces swabbed were curtain rods, bed backboards and bathroom door handles.
Marriott Hotels & Resorts is "re-imagining" the traditional small meeting to become a collaborative work experience that will promote creativity and innovation.
Inspired by the work styles of Gen X and Gen Y, Marriott Hotels & Resorts has exclusively partnered with Steelcase, the leader in workspace design, and launched today Workspring at Marriott. Redmond Marriott Town Center, near Seattle, is the first hotel to offer the small meetings suite. Workspring at Marriott — the industry's first purpose-built suite of integrated spaces and common areas designed for small meetings — takes a holistic approach, bringing together seamlessly integrated service, technology and contemporary design. A new survey sponsored by WIRED and Marriott Hotels & Resorts, found that 48 percent of readers polled said they are "more productive when they work remotely" and 45 percent have "unmet needs when working remotely." The online survey underscores that people are working differently than in previous generations. The trend has shifted from individual workspaces to an ecosystem of places that gives workers choice and control over where and how to work, in and out of the office. Today's companies rely on their employees to co-create and innovate to solve tough business problems. Based on extensive research by Steelcase, which has been an expert in workplace experiences for 100 years, everything in Workspring at Marriott from the furniture set-up to the locally-sourced, healthy food, to the smallest details, such as sustainably-produced office supplies, has been meticulously designed to support small, collaborative meetings and generate better results.
Key Appointments in the Industry
Congratulations to these new appointments…
Omni Hotels & Resorts has appointed industry veteran Stephen Kallaher as vice president of acquisitions and development. In this role, Kallaher will be responsible for identifying and evaluating acquisition, conversion and development opportunities for new Omni Hotels & Resorts properties. He will also oversee market feasibility analyses and assist with delivering the brand's long term expansion goals. Kallaher possesses twenty-five years of hotel development, acquisition and asset management experience covering all property types. His considerable experience includes mergers, acquisitions, contract negotiations, site planning, the public permitting process, and construction, as well as strategic planning, market analysis, feasibility studies, financial and investment analysis, debt and equity analysis, operational analysis, yield management analysis and appraisal. Most recently, Kallaher served as vice president of development for Wyndham Hotel Group where he oversaw the addition of Wyndham Hotel’s upscale and luxury brands for the western region of the United States. Prior to that, he served as senior vice president – lodging development for Marriott International. He has also held leadership positions at Promus Hotels, Coopers & Lybrand and PKF Consulting. Kallaher earned his B.B.A degree from Memphis State University and graduated from the Executive Development Program at the prestigious Aspen Institute.
The Supervisory Board of Steigenberger Hotels AG has appointed Puneet Chhatwal as new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Management Board. Having completed a Bachelor's Degree at the University of Delhi and a diploma in Food Service and Hotel Management, Chhatwal started his career with the India Tourism Development Corporation. After several operational positions in India, he studied at IMHI (ESSEC), Paris and earned a Master's Degree in 1991 in International Hospitality Management. In 2012, he completed the Advanced Management Program (AMP) at INSEAD Business School in Fontainebleau. Chhatwal is a Fellow of the Institute of Hospitality (FIH). After gaining valuable insights and experience in hotel consulting and project development, Chhatwal joined Carlson Hotels Worldwide in 1998, where he was responsible for the development of the group's brands in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Since 2002, he has been responsible for Corporate Business Development at the Rezidor Hotel Group in Brussels. As Chief Development Officer (CDO) he became a member of the Executive Committee in 2007. During his tenure at Rezidor, the group grew from 150 to the current level of 435 hotels, with brands such as Radisson Blu, Park Inn by Radisson, Hotel Missoni and Regent.
The Latest in Hotel Openings
Le Bristol Paris has debuted Le Bar du Bristol, which completes its renovation program. The bar features an interior design by Pierre-Yves Rochon and Maja Oetker. Highlights include a garden fresco by Thierry Bruet and a 19th-century marble fireplace. The décor is reminiscent of an English club, with silk curtains for privacy, a wooden floor of Versailles oak, and 100-year-old pine paneling from Surrey. The bar will also host a rotating program of contemporary artwork and artists’ videos. The menu from Le Bristol’s Chef de Cuisine Eric Frechon includes international bits such as maki rolls with king crab and vegetables in spicy ketchup, chicken wings in satay sauce, and gambas tempura with ginger and coriander mayonnaise. Head Barman Maxime Hoerth leads a team that includes Roman Devaux, previously of the Hemingway Bar at the Ritz Paris.
Renaissance to open in Turkey by year's end. Marriott International will make its debut in the Turkish city of Izmir by year's end with the opening of a 110-room Renaissance hotel. Izmir, Turkey’s third-largest city behind Istanbul and Ankara, sits on the Aegean Sea about 350 miles southwest of Istanbul.
Megaworld Corp, a real estate company in the Philippines, will build two three-star Savoy hotels in Manila and Boracay, which are expected to open in 2016. Savoy Hotel Newport City, a stone’s throw away from Resorts World Manila and Ninoy Aquino International Airport’s three terminals, will be a 10-storey structure with 510 rooms, while Savoy Hotel Boracay Newcoast is designed as a beach hotel with more than 500 rooms. Both hotels will be managed by a Megaworld affiliate which owns Richmonde Hotels, according to the company. Richmonde has two existing three-star hotels in Manila.
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