267 | Comeback Opportunity: LodgingStream digital conference looks toward a post-COVID-19 future


This episode features sound bites from previous podcast reports covering the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the hospitality industry.

The voices belong to Lily Mockerman, Dave Shah, Darshan Patel, Andressa Chapman, Jamie Lane and Ron Mitchell. They have all been featured in our special news project that’s focused on the crisis.

So far, we’ve produced 13 podcast episodes exploring different facets of the industry as it navigates the pandemic’s economic challenges.

Until President Trump declared COVID-19 a national emergency on March 13, Lodging Leaders was producing one news podcast a week. On March 16, we began to produce three reports a week during this unprecedented time.

We’ve gone back to one report a week for the time being, but depending on how it goes that may change. We’ll let you know if it does.

The big reason we’ve returned to our once-a-week programming is because it’s been all hands on deck here for another very big project.

My partners and I at Long Live Lodging, producer of Lodging Leaders, have been crazy busy organizing the online conference called LodgingStream: A Brave New World.

Because of your great response to our expanded programming, we wanted to put this event together and bring a lot of advice and thought leadership under one roof, so to speak.

LodgingStream will take place live at 1 PM Eastern Daylight Time on Thursday, April 30th.

The event platform allows attendees to go in and out of a panel discussion just like at a real conference.

LodgingStream: A Brave New World will open with State of the Industry presentations by economist Jamie Lane of CBRE Hotels Americas Research, who will look at where the hospitality business is today and where it’s headed; and Daniel Lesser of LW Hospitality Advisors, an expert in hotel transactions and other investment activity who also will provide his futuristic view.

We’ll then give the floor to hotel owners, operators and others in a session called What’s Your Story?

While interviewing folks for our special coronavirus reports, we have heard some interesting and amazing stories from professionals on the front lines of the industry. By listening to their stories, I was reminded of how the true spirit of hospitality shines bright in our darkest moments. I think you’ll be inspired.

For the rest of the LodgingStream conference, you’ll be able to attend three concurrent workshops and ask panelists questions. Of the 12 sessions, topics will include managing rate to attract business, marketing to regain travelers’ trust, rehiring challenges, what the new workplace will look like and what it’s going to take to bring the industry back.

Everyone you heard in the beginning of this podcast will be among the panelists.

As the conference wraps up you’ll be able to attend a virtual Happy Hour, sharing a little bit about you while making meaningful connections.

I am so excited about this event. I’ve never been a part of anything like it. Just like many of you during this time in which we find ourselves, I’ve decided to tackle new things. It’s never too late to change your mindset.

Please join us at 1 PM eastern daylight time Thursday at LodgingStream: A Brave New World.

Registration is just $5, which covers our cost to bring you the conference.

Click here to sign up or for more information.

Resources and Links

  • 311 | Shelters From the Norm: Hotels used for hospitals and housing face unexpected problems

    A year ago, Darshan Patel, CEO of Hotel Investment Group in San Diego, California, was one of the first hoteliers in the U.S. to step up and offer properties to overwhelmed hospitals seeking places to care for COVID and non-COVID patients as well as vulnerable populations. As the crisis eases and Hotel Investment Group works to return the hotels to business, Patel is negotiating with local governments to pay for the wear and tear on the properties. Patel is not alone as many hoteliers are unexpectedly dealing with problems that state and local governments’ urgent decisions have created, including property damage, increased costs and eviction bans. This report is the second in a two-part series examining the pros and cons of opening hotels to alternative uses during the pandemic. It is part of Long Live Lodging’s special coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.

  • 310 | Hotels Convert to Housing: Federal COVID-19-relief funds fuel transactions

    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.

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