April 14, 2021
Ginny Morrison of Evanston, Illinois, is a 33-year veteran of Spire Hospitality, a hotel management company with a portfolio that spans coast-to-coast. As vice president of sales and marketing, Morrison saw the coronavirus pandemic decimate the meetings business. More than a year later, she’s witnessing a comeback as small-meeting planners are actively booking events for the last half of 2021 and beyond. As public health agencies expand COVID-19 vaccination programs across the U.S. and states ease up on public-gathering restrictions designed to keep the virus at bay, the hotel industry is seeing small meetings begin a comeback. In Episode 317, Long Live Lodging covers the state of the small-meetings sector and how hotels can grab their share of the meetings business during and post-pandemic. This report is part of our ongoing coverage about the coronavirus pandemic and its impact on the hospitality industry.
April 7, 2021
316 | Pandemic Trailblazer: Hunter Hotel Investment Conference leads lodging industry’s 2021 event circuit
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.
March 24, 2021
More than 1,760 hotels or 5 percent of U.S. room inventory have permanently or temporarily closed since March 2020, when the coronavirus pandemic first gripped the country, reports Kalibri Labs. Though last year was the worst on record for hotel business performance, the reason behind the change in the metrics is different than in previous economic crises. The shuttering of hotels as well as government restrictions on travel are skewing national averages in key performance indicators, including average daily rate, experts say. For the most part, hoteliers have been smart about holding rate as much as possible in contrast to the “race to the bottom” seen in past economic crises. Episode 314 explores what is truly impacting hotel rate during the coronavirus pandemic. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
March 10, 2021
Spring breaks will be shortened or reduced as the coronavirus pandemic continues to impact travel and tourism. Many schools and colleges are skipping the annual rite to party. But that doesn’t mean hotels have to give up trying to attract guests this season. Staycations are increasing as people tired of being cooped up seek a respite close to home. In this report, Long Live Lodging explores the origin and evolution of the staycation and how hotels can capitalize on people’s desire to get away from it all, even if it’s just for one or two nights. This report is part of our ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
March 3, 2021
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.
February 24, 2021
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.
February 17, 2021
308 | From Guests’ Mouths to Managers’ Ears: J.D. Power study reveals what satisfies hotel customers in COVID-19 age
Crestline Hotels & Resorts, a third-party management company in Fairfax, Virginia, recently celebrated its first-place position in J.D. Power’s inaugural Third-Party Hotel Management Guest Satisfaction Benchmark. Long Live Lodging features Aaron Olson, senior vice president of operations at Crestline, and Andrea Stokes, who led the benchmark study at J.D. Power. They share best practices hotel managers are implementing to keep guest satisfaction at an all-time high, especially in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
February 10, 2021
Ben Seidel is founder, president and chief executive of Real Hospitality Group, a third-party manager with a portfolio of more than 100 hotels. Like most owners and managers, Seidel and his team view the coronavirus pandemic as the biggest risk facing hotel performance but acknowledge that other threats also loom large. The number and severity of climate-related catastrophes in the U.S. broke a record in 2020. As a result, Seidel has seen property insurance costs dramatically increase for 2021. Long Live Lodging explores how changes in commercial insurance coverage is affecting the hotel industry. This report is part of our ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
January 27, 2021
The coronavirus pandemic is forcing hoteliers to deploy new technology to run more cost-efficient businesses and to ensure customers that properties are safe by providing such services as contactless check in and mobile key. Long Live Lodging explores how the COVID-19 outbreak has invigorated hotels’ adoption of tech solutions and looks at what types of products owners and operators are investing in during the coronavirus crisis and for the post-pandemic era. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
January 20, 2021
Hotel appraisers and brokers expect distressed assets to come to market as the pandemic recession continues into 2021. Analysts say billions of dollars in private equity are waiting in the wings to acquire hotels underperforming as a result of the coronavirus crisis. But pricing will be different than in previous economic downturns. While a transaction may be distressed, it will not necessarily reflect distress pricing,” said Daniel Lesser of LW Hospitality Advisors. Long Live Lodging explores the state of hotel values as well as what may lie ahead with regard to transactions in 2021 as the spread of COVID-19 continues to stifle lodging performance. This report is part of our ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
January 13, 2021
Global business travel is a $1.4 trillion industry. The Global Business Travel Association calculates the coronavirus pandemic in 2020 resulted in a loss of $113 billion in business travel spend in hotels, airlines and other sectors of the travel industry. But all is not lost. GBTA, industry analysts and travel management companies see some green shoots of hope for 2021 as the COVID-19 vaccine rolls out and corporations put some of their people on the road again. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
January 6, 2021
Long Live Lodging, an online multimedia news organization that covers the hospitality industry, found itself tossing aside its plans for news coverage late in the first quarter of 2020, when the coronavirus pandemic hit the U.S. and devastated the hospitality industry. The year turned out to be ground-breaking for Long Live Lodging, which developed the industry’s first live digital conference, and its podcast, Lodging Leaders, which increased its followers through timely, credible and balanced reporting on trends and issues driving the industry during the historic year. The company also won international recognition for its coverage of the COVID-19 crisis and its work as a whole. Long Live Lodging is a startup media company, formed in 2019, with Lodging Leaders, which was founded in 2015. In today’s report, we celebrate the podcast’s 300th episode. Podcast founder and co-host Jon Albano and co-host Judy Maxwell have a free-wheeling conversation in which they review the top podcasts of 2020 (Can anyone say ‘fair franchising’?) and give a brief preview of what the media organization plans for 2021.
December 30, 2020
The damage wrought on hotel businesses by the coronavirus pandemic is wide and deep. But the longevity of the pandemic is proving to be truly devastating, especially as the U.S. experiences another surge in the infection rate. In the early days of the crisis, owners, operators and asset managers acted quickly to prevent hotels from closing. Some advisers helped owners weigh the pros and cons of remaining open or temporarily closing. As the pandemic continues its assault, hotel operators are figuring out ways to stabilize their businesses while holding out hope the vaccine will trigger the start of a recovery. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
December 16, 2020
The coronavirus pandemic has forced restaurants to close or scale back in-house dining operations in response to government mandates and residents sheltering in place. The crisis is accelerating the emerging trend of “ghost kitchens,” restaurants that cook up delivery-only menus and depend on third-party delivery services such as DoorDash and Uber Eats to serve their customers. Adding a tech-driven delivery model to any restaurant, whether it’s stand-alone or inside a hotel, could generate new streams of revenue and save businesses and jobs. Long Live Lodging explores the ghost kitchen concept and how meal delivery has permanently changed the hospitality industry. This is part of our ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hospitality industry.
December 9, 2020
The coronavirus pandemic has affected nearly every aspect of business. Consumer buying habits are no exception as more sales than ever have shifted online. Omnisend recently charted a dramatic increase in consumers’ response to emails from retailers since the start sheltering in place.
The hospitality industry can take a page from retailers’ email-marketing playbook as hotels and other accommodations brainstorm for creative ways to reach out to a captive audience of travel consumers.
We explore how hotels can use email to connect with both loyal and prospective guests as the lodging industry prepares to emerge from its COVID-19 quarantine. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hotel industry.
December 2, 2020
It’s well known extended-stay-hotel and short-term-rental sectors have done better than their transient hotel counterparts during the coronavirus pandemic. Even before the crisis hit, residential-type accommodations were seeing a growth in interest from travelers as well as investors. The COVID-19 outbreak is proving mixed developments of hotel rooms, leased apartments and owned condominiums offer a unique value proposition during and after the pandemic. This report is part of Long Live Lodging’s ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hotel industry.