Author Archives: Cornelio

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 12.08.13

“The Latest Hotel Feature: A Smartphone”

In all business, but especially in the hospitality industry, it is extremely important to ensure hotels offers the latest technology in order to enhance a guest’ stay. This is becoming bigger and bigger everyday. Even housekeeping team members alert the front office team when a room is vacant clean through devices such as an Ipad, and other smartphones. If you also really think about it, these devices contribute to make a greener planet. Lights can be controlled through this simple device and so many other electronic appliances. In some hotels rooms keys also control the energy flow in the room; without a key no electronic device can be used, therefore if a guest leaves the room, all lights, television, microwave, etc, will be turned off. I think that technology like this should not only be offered in hotel suites, but to all rooms.

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 12.01.13

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 12.01.13

“On New Buses, It Will Be ‘Buckle Up”

I am very happy to read this new regulation. Eventhough most of us do not like to use seat belts, it is extremely important to ensure everyone’s safety. I’ve personally experienced two deaths in my family because my uncle and cousin were not using the seat belts. This could’ve saved their lives during this terrible accident. A lot of people think that seat belts are supposed to be used on planes only, but there are more terrestrial accidents than aerial. I still do not understand why so many of us are reluctant to use a device that is only going to ensure we are protected. These rules and regulations should be implemented also on existing buses and no only on the new ones.

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 11.24.13

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 11.24.13

“Some Help on the Nonrefundable Front”

This article is extremely interesting. I actually work as a revenue analyst and can spend hours developing this topic. To me, the best part of this rule is that other guests will be able to use the room (reservation) as it was booked and scheduled. Eventhough I fully comprehend and respect the guest opinion and position, non-refundable rates are highly restricted. There are a few reasons and some of them are: Once you make a prepaid/non refundable reservation you are lock in on the rate, no matter if the hotel occupancy level increases or drops, it does not matter if the hotel selling rates are incremented or lowered, you will be enjoying the benefit of that lower rate. Guests across the board, become extremely upset because they like to make changes to prepaid/non cancellable reservations. This information is stated on the booking and prior clicking on the “to confirm/proceed” button, the system asks again to review the terms and conditions of the booking. All of us would like to purchase the best available room, with the best view at the best price. Why wouldn’t we? The question here: is it also fair for a hotel to loose the room night + revenue of a prepaid reservation because the guest for instance did not read the terms and conditions/change plans, etc? The situation can be slightly different if the guest for example experiences a death in the family or any other circumstances out of the guest’s hand such as weather issues. I’ve personally cancelled and refunded prepaid/non refundable reservations based on the circumstances. I think allowing other people, with the approval of the main traveler of course, to use this type of booking is a great alternative.

Case Studies Chapters 8 & 10

Case Study I.

1. What can be done to offer the best possible lunch food and service?
A lot can be done: The usage of electrical stoves and other equipment that will not require gas in order to operate. The menu can also be modified while the issue is being fixed.

Case Study II.

1. How should Jane handle being a short cashier and a dish room person at breakfast? Probably she can call other employees that are off that day. Also if her employees are crossed-trained, she can move them and assign different working stations for that date.

2. What should Jane do with the food in the defective refrigerator? Should that is measured to be above 40 F be saved? In the meantime, they should try not to open the refrigerator door as often as they usually do. Also, she can move the items to another refrigerator while the non-working one is fixed. Food establishments always have more than one refrigerator.

3. What are Jane’s options concerning the ice shortage? She can send someone to purchase extra ice or even call one her purveyors to assist her with this issue by supplying ice. Of course, the relationship between the restaurant and their suppliers will make a big difference of the outcome on this unusual situation. She can call her supplier and inform them that they need these items to be delivered as soon as possible.

4. How should Jane handle the president’s function, knowing that the requested desserts have not been delivered? Again, when we are on this business things will always happen, nothing will be always perfect. The relationship between them will of course make an impact on this situation.

5. If the especial dessert cannot be purchased on time, how should the catering supervisor approach this situation when speaking with the president’s office? First and foremost honesty has to be executed. The situation has to be explained, and at the same offer other alternatives will assist to ease the error. Guests in general do not like to hear the word no, as long as an alternative is offered to them.

6. What can be done to ensure that mistakes, such as the one made by the bakery employee, do not happen again? Always double check all order to ensure items are delivered the same day every week/weekly. Tools such as email, calendar, and/or texts reminders can be set. This will alert the person in charge.

Case Study III.

1. What should be some of the key elements to consider in developing a proposal for your hotel guests? The proposal has to be presented in a way that captures the guest’s attention, and that the guest understands if for their benefit. Guests tend to be inclined more towards products/services that they are related to. Diagrams can be prepared, and even a video can be done and added to the hotel website in order to make it tangible.

Case Study IV.

1. List the recommendations you have for the park superintendents to help save the parks.

Some are:

• Do not enter the park with the card. Leave the car park outside.
• More superintendents so they can patrol the area more frequently.
• No grilling, or cooking any type of food at the park. People can bring already prepared food.
• Penalize those that harm the park. Humans learn with examples and real life situations. People will think twice before trashing the park.
• Apply severe sanctions such as: prohibiting the entrance to the park to those that destroy it.

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 11.17.13

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 11.17.13

“Hotel Review: “Hotel Review: Rosa Et Al Townhouse in Porto”

The Rosa Et Al Townhouse in Porto is the type of hotel that I look forward to stay in! Quite honest, I am somehow tired of the brand hotels, and their expected amenities since everything looks the same. This hotel is also located in a country that I’ve never been before; therefore it makes it even more interesting to me. I love the idea that this hotel has only 6 rooms, and that is located in the second largest city in Portugal. The rate sounds extremely attractive, and what they offer in comparison to their price is also fair. I highly recommend to everyone to stay in a hotel that is not famous known, and that it does not belong to any chain. The experience most of time is also amazing!

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 11.10.13

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 11.10.13

“Hotel Review: “The Marker Hotel in Dublin”

This article captures so much attention because I am a witness of what Aruba is and what it can offer. Aruba is a beautiful island located in the Caribbean sea next to Curacao and Bonaire; it is the part of the A, B, C islands (Aruba, Bonaire, Curazao). The people from Aruba are extremely friendly and they welcome you to their country. They are still part of the Dutch culture, and these people are also very amicable. The author relates a series of experiences; it’s like an agenda of things he did (or to do) everyday. I can honestly say that the writer is right, but I personally did not have a set agenda when I visited this island. The most beautiful things that Aruba has is that when you wake up you have nothing or a lot do. I visited the beach, the duty free shopping centers (ohh yes, they are not only inside of the airports), and beautiful restaurants. I highly recommend this paradise to everyone that wants to have a great time!

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 11.03.13

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 11.03.13

“Hotel Review: “The Marker Hotel in Dublin”

The author’s experience was great at the property. Personally, eventhough you pay in euros, I do not think this is an expensive property. The spa is included with the rate, which it’s 250 dollars per day. Its amenities make this hotel very attractive, but what’s best is the location of the property. It has shopping centers, theaters, and everything else you’ll need to make your stay even more enjoyable. This hotel also offers complimentary desserts, such as tart lemonade. I will definitely stay in this hotel as Dublin is one of the countries that captures my attention.

Case Study and Chapter Review Questions. Rooms Divisions Operations

Case Study and Chapter Review Questions.

Chapter Questions.

*Briefly define the purpose of a hotel. Why is it so important to empathize with the culture of the guest?
It is provide lodging accommodation. In order to be have a successful lodging operation you have to connect with the guest, with what matters to them, with whom they are. It is a feeling of security, curiosity, excitement, relaxation, and positive energy.

*List the main responsibilities of the front office manager.
The Front Office Manager is responsible for all duties of the front desk operation, which includes: staff training, inter-department communications, and staff scheduling. The FOM usually works a regularly scheduled front desk shift and must be available to work any shift as needed. The Front Office Manager should possess strong communication skills and demonstrate leadership abilities.

*What are the advantages and disadvantages of yield management?
Customers generally don not like paying dramatically different prices for the same product or service. The pleasure of the person getting “a good deal” will be far outweighed by the anger of someone who thinks they are being “ripped off”. The last minute flyer responding to a family emergency is unlikely to be amused when paying several times more than the backpacker sitting beside him simply because the backpacker booked a month in advance. Also, the term “sophisticated software” can be a warning sign. “Sophisticated” sometimes means, “stuff you don´t understand” and that´s not a good way to make business decisions. In any case, it is difficult to manage prices in such a way to sell as much as possible without selling too cheaply. Consumers will actively try to get the best out the system and the high-paying market segments will scheme to out fox the yield managers.

*Why is the concierge an essential part of the personality of a hotel?
The concierge provides information, advice, guidance and assistance to hotel guests in all manner of things, including hotel services, entertainment, recreation facilities, restaurants, luggage, transport, sightseeing etc. The concierge also leads a team, which may include assistant concierges, porters, commissioners and valet parking attendants.

*Explain the importance of accident and loss prevention. What security measures are taken to protect guests and their property?
In the hotel industry it is extremely important to ensure everyone, employees and guests are safe and secure. Safety is one of the main concerns on today’s world; this is actually one of the top 10 reasons why a guest chooses a specific property. The housekeeping team is the primary department in charge to ensure all guest items are not lost, and if by any chance a guest leaves something, they have to report and give it to the security. Camera, hard coded room keys, and security patrols are just some of ways to protect a guest.

Case Study: Overbooking a hotel.

I personally think that this a common practice and we cannot forget that the hotel industry is a business, just like any other one, and the bottom line is to generate revenue. Overbooking a hotel is just one of strategies that a General and Revenue managers make to ensure all rooms are sold on a daily basis. The DNA (Did not arrive, did not show) percentage changes based on the hotel, but there are common practices as to who how negative a hotel should go and who should be walked. Most obvious, you never want to walk a regular frequent guest or a group delegate. These decisions, if not before, are made early in the morning. Unfortunately, those 3rd party reservations such as Expedia, Travelocity, Hotwire, etc are walked first than those booked directly through the brand. The front office team should be prepared, knowledgeable and patient when dealing with irate guests once they are told their reservation has been cancelled. This also might sound a little bit harsh, but there are also those guests that do not cancel their reservation on time or DNA; they do it just because they want to and knowing they will not get charged for room and taxes since the credit card on the reservation declines. Any questions?

NYtimes Travel Section, Article 10.27.13

“Hotel Review: Copacabana Palace in Rio de Janeiro”

After the Copacabana went through renovations last year, it looks amazing. It actually makes the hotel tangible. I personally would love to work for a hotel resort destination. I think it’ll give me a better understanding of the hospitality industry and its different hotel categories. The rate of this hotel is a little bit expensive, still reasonable for the amenities they offer. I think that after its transition, it’ll capture more customers as the product (hotel) has a fresher, newer, and innovate vibe. That goes without mentioning its location. Brazil is one of the top 10 vacation destinations in the world.