Cecil Staton has had his hands full to say the least. He has been at the helm of AAHOA, the world’s largest hotel owners association, for just four months.
The new coronavirus outbreak and its devastating effect on the travel industry has hotel owners turning to him for solutions.
This is the third installment of a special report by Lodging Leaders podcast that examines the impact the coronavirus is having on the U.S. hotel industry.
In today’s episode, Staton shares his views regarding the “heartbreaking” decisions owners are having to make in the face of steep business losses and what AAHOA is doing to navigate them through the troubled waters.
Also featured is hotelier Kal Patel, president and CEO of Crestpoint Cos. who wants franchisers to do more in the way of financial relief for franchisees.
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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.