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August 4, 2021
331 | Breaking Away: How to recruit and retain young hospitality professionals in a post-pandemic industry
Nicolas Graf, associate dean, clinical professor and chair of New York University’s Jonathan M. Tisch Center of Hospitality, will soon unveil the school’s new Hospitality Innovation Hub. Departure from the norms of doing business is key to the post-pandemic survival and success of the hospitality industry, says Graf. Companies that offer flexibility in thought and practice among employees will go a long way in leading the industry’s post-pandemic recovery. Episode 331 of Lodging Leaders explores what it will take for owners, operators and others invested in the industry to attract and retain bright young talent who can help build modern and sustainable hotel business models.
July 29, 2021
The coronavirus pandemic has forced thousands of young hospitality professionals to leave their jobs or rethink their career paths, leaving the industry with a dearth of mid-career talent and leadership. In Episode 6 of Next Gen in Lodging podcast, co-host Omari Head talks with Priscilla Guasso and Bijal Patel about millennials leaving the hospitality industry and how employers can bring them back and help them rebuild their careers.
July 28, 2021
330 | Youthful Perspective: Industry leader Bijal Patel mourns the loss of ‘an entire generation’ of hospitality workers
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.
July 27, 2021
Robert Cole is CEO of Hospitality Ventures Management Group, a third-party management company he founded 20 years ago. HVMG manages more than 40 hotels. Since establishing HVMG, Cole has led hotel teams through various crises, including 9/11, the Great Recession and the COVID-19 pandemic. In this episode of Lodging Luminaries, host Jason Freed talks with Cole about how HVMG managed to do more than merely eke out a profit from the hotels in its portfolio during the pandemic. Over the past 18 months, it exceeded the industry’s average house-profit levels. Cole talks about the tough decisions that were made amid the crisis to save the hotels under HVMG’s care and how HVMG has adjusted its business model to succeed in post-pandemic America.
July 8, 2021
Michael Levie is co-founder and operations chief of Citizen M, a tech-forward luxury lifestyle hotel brand that caters to the frequent traveler, the mobile citizen. Lodging Luminaries podcast spotlights innovators in the hospitality industry and Levie is a prime example of a hotelier who thinks differently about the form and function of lodging. He has built a company culture that encourages creativity and ‘what-if’ thinking. In this episode Lodging Luminaries host Jason Freed talks with Levie about the importance of opening yourself to transformational ideas as the global hotel industry emerges from the wreckage of the coronavirus crisis.
July 7, 2021
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.
June 30, 2021
Nearly 48 million Americans plan to travel over the Fourth of July weekend, predicts AAA. Most of them will drive and many of them plan to stay in hotels. What makes a travel consumer choose your hotel? Price can be a factor but so can the story the property tells through its online photos and its real-life curb appeal. First impressions of a hotel set the tone for the guest’s entire stay. Its roadside image is more important than ever as the lodging industry this summer hangs its hopes on a comeback driven by domestic travelers. Lodging Leaders podcast explores the importance of a hotel’s curb appeal as hoteliers think of ways to attract travelers seeking safety and assurance as the nation emerges from the coronavirus pandemic.
June 24, 2021
Talene Staab, global brand head of Tru by Hilton, has been with the franchiser her whole career. The midscale brand launched in 2016 and in 2019 Staab took the reins to lead the growth of Tru, which is closing in on its 200th opening. In Episode 5 of Lodging Luminaries, Staab talks with host Jason Freed about her experience as a global brand head of a new-build concept continuously undergoing tweaks and revisions and what she and Hilton are doing to encourage more women to invest in hotels. She also dives into the work Tru has done around augmenting the guest experience through design and personalization, turning a hotel into more than a place to rest your head but a key part of your overall travel experience.
June 23, 2021
Home-sharing or short-term-rental platforms saw business surge during the 2020 pandemic year. The momentum continues this year as many travelers hitting the road in the shadow of the coronavirus pandemic prefer houses over hotels. In this report, Lodging Leaders explores what’s driving not only the home-sharing sector, but also buoying extended-stay hotels, including branded residential-style accommodations that are a hybrid of hotel and home. Alternative lodging’s business strategy holds important lessons for hoteliers seeking new ideas in rebuilding business momentum as the hotel industry recovers from the coronavirus crisis.
June 17, 2021
NextGen in Lodging brings back three guests who last year started the conversation about diversity, inclusion and equity in the hospitality industry. In Episode 5 of NextGen in Lodging podcast the hospitality professionals review whether progress has been made despite the challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
June 16, 2021
326 | Make a New Plan: CHMWarnick and Pinnacle Advisory partnership signals what’s ahead for hotel industry
CHMWarnick and Pinnacle Advisory Group in April announced their decision to strategically align their businesses and bring more services and solutions to a hotel industry still in the throes of the coronavirus crisis. While properties in many markets are experiencing a business revival led by leisure travel, many others continue to work their way out of a maze of financial challenges. Lodging Leaders explores the partnership and what it signals for the industry as it pushes toward a post-pandemic recovery.
June 10, 2021
Mit Shah’s story of success is a lot like that of his fellow Asian American hoteliers. He grew up working in his father’s motel and a few years after graduating college convinced his father to sell the roadside asset and invest in a new concept called a limited-service hotel. In his conversation with Lodging Luminaries host Jason Freed, Mit Shah, CEO of Noble Investment Group, shares his cautious forecast about the future of hotel ownership, when people will return to work and why travel will rebound as, after more than a year of lockdowns, people are eager to meet face to face.
June 9, 2021
Frances Kiradjian understands resiliency. The Los Angeles businesswoman founded Boutique & Lifestyle Leaders Association 12 years ago at the dawn of the Great Recession. Today, the association boasts hundreds of members from all over the world and is the hallmark for independent boutique lifestyle hotels. During the pandemic year 2020, Kiradjian watched boutique hoteliers dig deep for creativity, operational courage and a positive outlook as the hotel industry quickly spiraled into crisis mode. Episode 325 of Lodging Leaders podcast features Kiradjian in the third and final installment of its series on independent hotels doing business amid the coronavirus crisis.
June 3, 2021
NextGen in Lodging co-founders review the past 12 months since the death of George Floyd at the hands of police and how the incident sparked cries for change throughout the nation. It also forced the hospitality industry to re-examine its hiring and promotion practices to achieve true diversity, inclusion and equity in the workplace.
June 2, 2021
324 | Independent But Not Alone: Franchisers’ soft-brand engines drive business to struggling hotels
Independent hotels struggled just as much as their franchised cousins when the coronavirus pandemic first struck the U.S. in spring 2020. Hundreds of independent properties temporarily closed amid the downturn in business and government shutdowns. Among those that reopened the soonest were independent hotels that are part of soft-branded collections. In Episode 324, Lodging Leaders explores how being attached to a brand engine enabled owners and operators of independent properties to regain their financial footing amid the pandemic recession.
May 27, 2021
Remington Hotels named Sloan Dean president and CEO just a few months before the coronavirus pandemic struck the U.S. and decimated its hospitality industry. Dean, a self-described millennial, said the lodging sector is taking on a new look as companies restructure their executive and line-level ranks and leisure travelers hit the road. The post-pandemic world requires new ways of doing business, Dean said, noting new labor models and the emergence of a chief commercial role to oversee all aspects of revenue. Episode 3 of Lodging Luminaries features host Jason Freed and Dean in a thought-provoking conversation about what’s ahead for hospitality.