Cierra Bickel is director of sales at the Holiday Inn Express & Suites Cincinnati NE Redbank. She was behind the front desk in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic when a man, a woman and their son came in to book 26 rooms for two nights. Overjoyed at having unexpected business, Bickel was in for a shock when the man told her they did not intend to stay in the hotel. Bickel tells what happened next in What’s Your Story? and was featured in our digital conference called LodgingStream: A Brave New World that took place live on April 30.
The Hunter Hotel Investment Conference will be the industry’s first large event to be held during the coronavirus pandemic. The Atlanta event will be a hybrid format of in-person and virtual access, also an industry first. Lee Hunter, chairman of the conference, knows the level of expectation is high among other conference planners as well as industry professionals eager to network after more than a yearlong hiatus. Episode 316 of Lodging Leaders podcast features Hunter as he tells what it takes to re-launch the industry’s conference circuit amid the COVID-19 outbreak.
The coronavirus crisis has dramatically altered the traditional competitive set most hotels use to benchmark their business performance. During the pandemic, properties have reduced services; they’ve closed either permanently or temporarily; or they’ve transitioned to alternative uses by contracting out to essential travelers or social agencies in search of housing. Episode 315 explores the genesis of the hotel industry comp set and how the COVID-19 outbreak has changed the strategic business tool. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.