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Sofitel first Green Globe hotel on Palm Jumeirah
The Sofitel Dubai The Palm Resort & Spa has been awarded the international Green Globe Certification (GGC), achieving a 90% rating following an exhaustive sustainability audit conducted by sustainability experts, Farnek Consultancy.
The five-star, 361 rooms and 182 serviced apartments, Polynesian island themed resort is the first to be Green Globe certified on Palm Jumeirah and is the first within the Accor group's 3,500 hotels.
The hotel which opened in July 2013, already had key energy efficient systems incorporated within its initial design, clearly indicating that its commitment to sustainability started on the drawing board. For example solar panels installed on the roof, covering 530 square metres, provide 50% of the hotel's hot water.
Condensation from the air conditioning units is drained and recycled to irrigate the hotel's 27,000 square meters of landscape. The irrigation system itself is monitored by a weather station located on the property, which allows the hotel to operate its sprinklers more efficiently.
Post opening, all public area taps were fitted post opening with water aerators, saving 6,000 cubic metres of water, 80% of the resorts 24 hour lighting has been replaced by LED lights saving more than 290,000 kilowatt hours of energy in less than four months. Low energy lighting in guest rooms will be phased in during the year.
The hotel also has an extensive waste segregation programme. Paper, plastic, cardboard and cooking oil is collected by a local waste management company to be recycled. The indirect savings alone are remarkable, in just six months the hotel has saved the equivalent of 759 trees, 187,446 kilowatt hours of energy, 25,505 litres of oil, more than 1.1 million litres of water and 2,678 pounds of air pollutants.
As a permanent ‘green' reminder to guests and staff alike, the hotel has covered parts of the interior with a unique collection of 24 vertical gardens with 170 species of plants, covering 600 square metres designed by renowned French botanist Patrick Blanc.
Couples getaway trips even hotter in 2014 says TripAdvisor survey
TripAdvisor has released the results of its couples getaway survey of nearly 5,000 U.S. respondents. According to the survey, 92 percent will enjoy an amorous escape in 2014, up from 78 percent in 2013 and among that group, 17 percent will take a couples trip for Valentine's Day.
More than half (52 percent) of U.S. respondents cited the primary reason for embarking on a couples getaway is simply because they are in love; 23 percent will get away to celebrate an anniversary or birthday; and five percent will travel to spend time away from the kids.
Of those traveling for a couples trip, 75 percent will get to their destination by airplane; 53 percent will travel by car; and 15 percent will arrive by boat.
Here's a look at where couples are headed this year: Beach / ocean - 61%; City - 39%; Island - 24%; Mountains - 21%; Countryside - 18%
Forty-four percent will travel domestically, 26 percent will travel internationally, and 30 percent will take both international and domestic trips during the year. The most popular major U.S. cities for those traveling are:
During their starry-eyed escape, 35 percent of travelers will splurge and stay at a luxury hotel; 24 percent will kick back in a chain hotel; 23 percent will hole up in a small hotel. Nineteen percent will enjoy a vacation rental; and 19 percent will stay at a B&B / inn.
Nearly one in three (30 percent) plan to splurge on a hotel room upgrade for their sweetheart.
HMC launches mobile app to foster loyalty between members and hotels
Hospitality Marketing Concepts (HMC), a provider of outsourced CRM-driven database management and loyalty marketing programs for premium hotel organizations, has launched a mobile app designed to enhance members' relationships with its client hotels. HMC's mobile app can be branded to any of the company's hotel loyalty programs and combines the ease of digital redemption with the marketing power of real-time promotions.
"Our members rely heavily on their smart phones every day and we've noticed usage increases substantially whenever they're traveling," said Mokhtar Ramadan, CEO of Hospitality Marketing Concepts. "HMC's new mobile app offers members direct access to timely and relevant push-notifications about pertinent hotel promotions based on geo-location and purchasing behavior. Members can book rooms directly utilizing their exclusive member rates, make restaurant reservations, or print and redeem membership benefits directly from the app. This eliminates the need for inconvenient, outdated paper-based membership materials."
To benefit partner hotels, HMC's mobile app utilizes a proprietary cloud-based platform with security controls that ensure the validity of authorized, valuable membership benefits while simultaneously increasing F&B visits and room nights at rates higher than a hotel's ADR. By leveraging the rich data from HMC's app to segmentation and member-targeting capabilities, hotels have the ability to increase response-rate on locally relevant promotions and fill need-periods more effectively and at a moment's notice.
Members also have the ability to browse hotel information including photos, addresses, maps, room descriptions, and restaurants in addition to all aspects of their account including membership renewals or referring friends to the program via their social network contacts.
HMC plans to roll out the app to Hilton Premium Club members in Asia within the coming month and customized apps for HMC's additional hotel loyalty programs are scheduled for launch in the near future.
Horwath HTL Projects 2014 Outlook for key Asia Pacific hotel markets
Hotel, tourism and leisure consultants Horwath HTL has written 12 Country Reports from the Asia Pacific and Indian Region for the 2014 Hotel Yearbook. The Hotel Yearbook, in its eighth edition, is made up of exclusive editorial contributions from more than two-dozen opinion leaders from around the world. The publication focuses on the future of the hotel industry and upcoming trends and innovations that will have an impact on its development.
Altogether, the 12 countries covered are: China, India, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, Myanmar, New Zealand, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam and South Korea.
Each Country report gives a brief snapshot of the hotel business landscape in 2013, followed by an insider's perspective on the outlook for 2014 and beyond. Included are:
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