Mark Lewis-Brown is a hospitality industry veteran with 25 years of experience in online distribution, hotel operations and airline sales. He’s recognized as a visionary for product development, client services and marketing efforts at Vertical Booking, Centric Hospitality Group and Genares.
Mark founded InnPoints in 1995, giving independent and boutique properties the chance to establish a loyal client base and compete with the major hotel chains through a frequent stay program. One year later, the company merged with Bed&Breakfast Direct to form InnPoints Worldwide, an electronic reservation distribution and marketing company. After fifteen successful years of developing reservation technology and services including Qube Hotels and StayCredits, Mark played a key role in the creation of Centric Hospitality Group, designing a powerful parent company for InnPoints Worldwide and long-time partner CARINO Hotels and Resorts.
Prior to founding InnPoints, Mark owned and operated several successful lodging properties in Salt Lake City, UT and Albuquerque, NM and spent 13 years at Delta Airlines.
Bijal Patel, 31, is CEO of Coast Redwood Hospitality and the youngest chair of the California Hotel & Lodging Association. He’s made even more history at CHLA by agreeing to serve an unprecedented second term as the lodging industry emerges from the coronavirus pandemic. Patel is a third-generation hotelier. Being so steeped in hospitality at such a young age is not new for members of the Indian American hotelier community, but Patel fears the pandemic has drained the industry of emerging talent. Lodging Leaders spotlights Patel, who represents a leadership demographic that is fighting for the life of the hospitality industry as they watch their peers veer toward other career paths.
Many hotels these days have made room for guests with disabilities. Hotel managers and staff should also know what the Americans with Disabilities Act says about accommodating guests with pets. During the pandemic lockdowns, a lot of people added a pet to their household and now they’re bringing Fido along on vacation. Hotel employees need to know how to cater to both consumers who are pet owners as well as guests who travel with a trained service animal. Episode 329 of Lodging Leaders podcast reports on how the ADA defines a service animal and how a hotel is legally obligated to serve a guest who comes with a dog or any other animal.