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Luxury Hoteliers 1st Quarter 2015

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Luxury Hoteliers is the official magazine of the International Luxury Hotel Association.

Text of Luxury Hoteliers 1st Quarter 2015

  • 1st Quarter 2015

    spotlight on

    Luxury Hotel GMs

    revenue trends2015

    ask the conciergethe evolution of guest experience

    understanding thecloud and big data


  • Enroll in a new kind of rewards program.

    Advance your status with these distinctive specialties:

    Strategies in Leadership

    Brand Management & Guest Experience

    Development & Asset Management

    Global & Regional Standards

    Apply Now for Fall, Spring, or Summer:



  • Enroll in a new kind of rewards program.

    Advance your status with these distinctive specialties:

    Strategies in Leadership

    Brand Management & Guest Experience

    Development & Asset Management

    Global & Regional Standards

    Apply Now for Fall, Spring, or Summer:


    MANAGEMENT5 luxury hotel GMs on trends for 2015, experience-based travel, sustainability, and staying ahead of technology expectations

    04 SPOTLIGHT ON Laurence Dubey, General Manager, Viceroy Miami

    08 SPOTLIGHT ON Robert Petrovic, General Manager, The Ritz-Carlton, Berlin

    10 SPOTLIGHT ON Christophe Schnyder, General Manager, Sofitel The Palm Dubai

    14 SPOTLIGHT ON Edouard Grosmangin, General Manager, Six Senses Zil Pasyon, Seychelles

    18 SPOTLIGHT ON Gonzalo Maggi Bescos, General Manager, W Hotel Hoboken, New Jersey

    20 2015 Luxury HOTeL TreNd SNaPSHOTMega trends identified

    22 TIP-reLaTed cLaImS wILL cONTINue TO be Served uP aS THe LawSuIT du JOur aGaINST THe HOSPITaLITy INduSTry IN 2015

    ContentsJeffrey Ruzal, Senior Counsel in Labor and Employment Practice outlines best practices

    25 deSIGN THe IdeaL HOTeL LOyaLTy PrOGramDo you know what your guests want from your Hotel Loyalty Program?

    28 dOeS yOur braNd INcLude OPTImISm?Building a strategy that creates positive outcomes for staff, guests and your hotel

    30 7 reveNue TreNdS INfLueNcING THe Luxury HOTeL INduSTry IN 2015Emerging trends to watch this year

    33 Luxury HOTeL cHeckmaTeShowcase: a customer experience business strategy approach to differentiate from the competition

    36 Luxury HOTeLS IN THe cLOudUnderstanding the cloud and big data

    39 brING yOur OwN devIce (byOd) IN THe wOrLd Of HOSPITaLITyHow to create a mobile-

    friendly environment for your guests

    42 aSk THe cONcIerGe HOw GueST exPerIeNce HaS evOLvedInternational Concierges on the challenges of exceeding expectations

    46 THe NeweST SkILL a cOrPOraTe f&b NeedSBob Midyette, Corporate F&B with IHG, on capturing your guests attention, menu variety trends, and consumer value perception

    48 INNOvaTION Or INcremeNTaLISm? are yOu cHaNGING faST eNOuGH?Are you unsure of just how much you need to innovate, or where to start?

    50 IS IT TIme TO make a reNewabLe eNerGy baSed New yearS reSOLuTION?Sustainability: Successful Renewable Energy Technologies for hoteliers

    54 4 reaSONS wHy ceNTraLIzING ONLINe markeTING by HOTeL cOmPaNIeS IS a bad Idea!Local Knowledge and Expertise

    need to be considered when centralizing marketing processes

    57 INTervIew HarLaN GOLdSTeIN HONG kONG ceLebrITy cHefChef Harlan on influential trends, his philosophy, and how he motivates his winning team

    59 a fLawLeSS PerfOrmaNceEvent planning covered: essential ingredients for success

    62 10 cOmmON mISTakeS HOTeLIerS make wHeN THey aPPrOacH aN OrGaNIc breakfaSTWellness travel is a growing trend dont make these faux pas

    64 SPecIaLITy Tea IS NOw THe faSTeST GrOwING SecTOr Of THe Tea markeT5 ways to make your tea service an engaging experience

    66 HOSPITaLITy INduSTry & cuSTOmer eNGaGemeNTHow Hotels can use Mobile Apps to communicate more effectively with their guests and staff

    08 57

    ILHA 3Want to advertise in Luxury Hoteliers or write an article? Contact Sharon Hirschowitz +1 941 866 1951

  • Laurence Dubey General Manager, Viceroy Miami

    sPotLIGHt on

    LAURENCE DUBEY is the General Manager of the Viceroy Miami, a destination in itself, located in Miamis trending urban financial district, Brickell. The hotel is a gorgeous ensemble of innovation, superb design, global cuisine and the perfect amount of decadence. Laurence shares a little of her journey, her views on how luxury has evolved and how The Viceroy has addressed megatrends like technology, wellness travel and social media

    Did you have an aha moment when you knew that the luxury


  • hotel industry was for you, or did it happen by chance?From a very young age, I was extremely keen on traveling and experiencing other horizons. My family is very diversified and encouraged me to travel and learn about other cultures and countries. My decision to work in luxury hospitality happened by chance. I applied to a number of international schools and the first acceptance letter I received was from the Ecole hoteliere de Lausanne in Switzerland, an over century old school that is world-renowned for hotel management. That is how I started my career.

    Your roots are in Switzerland, I believe. How did your career take you to the Viceroy Hotel in Miami?I was born and raised in Lausanne, Switzerland, where I also attended school for hotel management. I believe that most of us, once we reach a certain level of independence in our career, tend to follow great leaders and that is exactly what happened when I joined Viceroy Hotel Group in 2009. After spending 10 exceptional years with The Ritz-Carlton hotel company, I decided to move back to Miami and join this innovative and vibrant younger hotel company with the personal goal of hopefully becoming part of its international growth

    What advice would you give to someone interested in a career with a luxury hotel, who would like to travel and work?I find it somewhat difficult to give advice to younger professionals

    who are looking to start their career now as the environment has drastically changed since I began my own career two decades ago. What I try to share with all of the colleagues at Viceroy Miami is that this career needs to be driven by a true passion for hospitality. Today, guests expectations are higher than ever before and are influenced with two major changes: their sense of urgency is heightened and their feedback is often brutal and made instantly public over social media. An aspiring hotelier needs to be ready to act and adjust very quickly and have a thick skin. I wish all hotel schools would teach the leaders of tomorrow to improve their EIQ along with other skills to be properly equipped for this profession

    The definition of luxury has changed the last few years, and guests are seeking out customized travel where they can pursue personal interests and learn more about the local community. Have you noticed this trend in your hotel?Absolutely, I find that guests thoroughly research their travels and often times become as knowledgeable as the hotel concierge on what to do or see in a specific location. Travel is not as exotic as it once was because it has become more accessible in more recent years. The popularity of some social media websites, such as Instagram and Vine, instill a new sense of discovering unique local experiences, which are not necessarily listed on Trip Advisors top 10 list of tourist attractions

    Wellness travel is a key trend that

    is growing in popularity, and your spa, designed by Philippe Starck, does appear to be a focal point of your hotel. Would you have any suggestions for a weary traveler in need of pampering?Miami is all about wellness inside and out! I take a strong personal interest in wellness programs for our guests and colleagues. Viceroy Miami has one of the most spectacular spas and fitness centers in the city and within our company portfolio. We try to remain innovators in our spa programs and have successfully launched the following new programs: 1. the HydraFacial treatment, a revolutionary non-invasive method for anti-aging. 2. a new and green product line from Europe that supports reforestation with every product sold in our spa. 3. Lastly, we also offer new packages specifically designed for gentlemen, including facials, body treatments, manicure and pedicures and for expectant mothers personal training sessions to eliminate any potential weight gain, body and skin

    ILHA 5

  • treatments focused on relaxation and skin hydration.

    You take a personal interest in responding to guest reviews on social media. How do you manage a bad review?I believe that the best policy when handling reviews is to be genuinely honest. If we missed our mission to delight a guest, we should acknowledge it and not hide behind any useless explanations. It is increasingly difficult for hotels to find out that a guest did not have a pleasant stay through an online review after the guest already departed and when it is too late to try and turn their experience around

    What changes in technology have you made to improve guest experience?Technology is a never-ending topic for us. We had two Internet upgrades and TV system changes this year alone and continue to seek ways to provide faster service

    for our guests. We are working on a better blue tooth sound system and larger charging stations for mobile devices in our guestrooms. Most hotel companies do not evolve as fast as technology. Luckily, Viceroy Hotel Group remains steadfast on making changes faster than the rest of the market, which allow us to be extremely competitive in the coming years

    How do you motivate your team and help them deliver service that constantly exceeds guest expectations?Open communication and constant recognition are absolute musts to keep our

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