Bobby Bowers is the Senior Vice President of Operations for STR – formerly known as Smith Travel Research. STR is the leading global provider of competitive benchmarking, information services and research to the hotel industry. STR gathers performance data from over 50,000 hotels located in more than 160 countries, and those properties use STR products, such as the STAR Report or Hotel Survey, to benchmark their hotel’s performance versus a competitive set or market segment.
Bobby is a hospitality veteran. He’s been with STR since 95, and he oversees all aspects of STR client and customer service and support sales efforts. He is often the keynote presenter at international, national and regional industry conferences.
Dhruv Patel, president of Ridgemont Hospitality, in October shared a bittersweet moment with his parents, Pravin and Sima Patel, when the family business sold the first motel that Pravin had built from the ground up more than 30 years ago. But they rest assured knowing it was the right decision because the 22-room property is being converted into affordable housing for military veterans at risk of homelessness. The transaction is among hundreds taking place across the U.S. as state and local governments work with non-profit agencies to create affordable housing solutions for vulnerable populations amid the COVID-19 pandemic. In Episode 310 Long Live Lodging reports on the financial and legal aspects of what it takes to convert a hotel into long-term housing. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s special coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
Kathleen Bertrand believes Atlanta is a city where dreams can come true. A jazz recording artist, she served at the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau for more than 30 years, finding new ways to promote to the world the best things about the city she calls a “melting pot” of races and cultures. In Episode 309 of Lodging Leaders podcast Bertrand gets vocal and tells her story of rising through the ranks as one of the few Black women in leadership in the tourism industry. This session is part of Long Live Lodging’s special report commemorating Black History Month and the hospitality industry’s impact on the Civil Rights Movement.