Raul is CEO of Virgin Hotels and is responsible for the company’s overall expansion, customer experience and culture. In a career that spans 30 years, Raul has held top management positions for Interstate Hotels, Lane Hotels and the Continental companies and is one of the few hospitality industry executives that understands both the lifestyle and branded hotels segments.
In between 1996 and 2010, Raul was President and Partner at Tecton Hospitality which owned and operated over 35 full branded hotels and was named a “Preferred Hotel Management Company” by most of the major brands. In 2002 he launched Desires Hotels, a management company focused on the growing lifestyle hotel segment. Desires Hotels had 20 award winning modern boutique hotels located in urban and resort locations domestically and internationally. Desires Hotels was named “Best Management Company of the Year” by Lodging Hospitality in 2008 and consistency achieved high levels of RevPAR and profitability as well as social media rankings and owner satisfaction. Raul also serves on the boards of Entrepreneurship and Innovation at Cornell University.
Extended-stay hotels are weathering the coronavirus crisis better than their transient cousins, according to reports. The Highland Group’s half-year report shows economy and mid-priced extended-stay hotels are faring better than upscale extended-stay accommodations. Second-quarter earnings reports from companies such as Extended Stay America prove the resiliency of the sector, especially when sales teams shift their focus to new prospects such as college students, leisure travelers who value the kitchen and essential workers in it for the long haul. Long Live Lodging examines what gives extended-stay its muscle in a weak economy. This report is part of our ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hotel industry.
Almost overnight, the roadside motel is a hot commodity. Travelers are going by car and when they stop they want the safest stay possible. The coronavirus pandemic has pushed health and safety to the top of hotel guests’ most-favored-amenity list and exterior-corridor properties appear to provide more of a risk-free stay than their interior-corridor cousins. Long Live Lodging examines the new shine travelers have put on exterior-corridor motels during the COVID-19 crisis and how brands heavy with motel-style properties are responding to the trend. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hotel industry.