April 20, 2010

In this issue…

People on the Move

Property Management Systems

Reservations

Marketing / Management

Revenue Management

Sales & Catering, Meeting Planning

F&B / POS

Guest Services

Back Office

Engineering

Communications

Security

TOP O’ THE NEWS

  • Interface standards bring major integration improvements, but we’re not at “plug-and-play” yet
  • OpenTravel Alliance publishes 2010A version interface messaging specifications

Annual conferences such as HTNG’s recent meeting in Orlando and OpenTravel’s next week in Seattle are good reminders of the advances made in multi-vendor systems integration, helped along by these groups’ specification standards. Even as integrated systems continue to expand their coverage, this continues to drive the debate over whether hotels can simply pick and choose their preferred individual systems (I dislike “best of breed” as a description – best for whom, and under what circumstances?) and, as long as they’re all OTA- or HTNG-certified, have them work seamlessly together.
Reality is different, of course. Systems interfaces have definitely become more powerful and flexible, but no specification can be a cure-all. In our complex industry each will necessarily have multiple aspects covering the different roles that the separate systems can take (sender, receiver, narrow or wide focus, etc.), and so not all the possible functionality will be implemented by all the vendors working to them. Given an unfortunate but natural variation in precision in adhering to specs and you have a definite need for each vendor to test and verify its interfaces with potential partners. Given the time and effort of doing so, this usually happens only at the request of a specific customer and inevitably comes at a price, which in some cases (and not always justifiably) can be quite high.
While it may sometimes appear that we’re still in the dark ages of needing a custom interface between each pair of systems, the situation is vastly improved. Having a common starting point for each vendor greatly reduces the development and testing work overall, and the resulting interfaces themselves are very significantly more capable and useful. Even with this definite progress towards a plug-and-play world, though, hotels looking to integrate multi-vendor solutions do need to recognize and allow for the time and cost of interface verification.
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The OpenTravel Alliance has published the 2010A version of its interface messaging specifications. Developments include new or enhanced message specifications for loyalty programs, dynamic packaging, hotel availability searches with mapping, and meal plan type searching.
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PEOPLE ON THE MOVE

  • Mike Gadbury joins EzRMS as Director of Strategic Sales Development
  • Scott Wilkins named Chief Operating Officer at Travelscream
  • Alan Gregory hired by Vertical Systems, Inc. (VSi) as Vice President of Operations
  • Rain Fletcher joins Choice Hotels International as Vice President of Application Development and Architecture
  • Oswald Lares to head EZYield.com’s sales in Europe and Northern Africa
  • Brian Kotula joins Travel Tripper’s sales team
  • Scott Alvis hired by Amadeus IT as Senior Vice President of Client Management, Americas
  • Frederic Danschutter appointed to International Channel Partner Manager at Guestline
  • Prakash Shukla, SVP Technology and CIO for Taj Hotels, joins HTNG’s board of directors

Mike Gadbury has joined Easy (Ez) Revenue Management (EzRMS) as Director of Strategic Sales Development. Starting his career in 1980 as Data Processing Manager for Trusthouse Forte, Mr. Gadbury subsequently founded International Guest Systems (IGS), which became a major PMS supplier in the UK and was subsequently sold to what is now SoftBrands. He then headed VisualOne’s expansion into the UK and Ireland prior to its sale to Agilysys.
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Scott Wilkins has been named Chief Operating Officer at Travelscream. Mr. Wilkins was most recently with merchant bank Cielo Partners and has investment banking experience spanning 14 years and three continents.
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Alan Gregory has been hired by Vertical Systems, Inc. (VSi) as Vice President of Operations. He brings nearly 20 years of experience in lodging technology services, including field operations and corporate positions with PSAV Presentation Services.
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Rain Fletcher has joined Choice Hotels International as Vice President of Application Development and Architecture. Mr. Fletcher has over 20 years of leadership experience, most recently as principal architect with CedarCrestone and earlier as principal systems engineer at Oracle.
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Oswald Lares has joined EZYield.com’s sales team with responsibility for Europe and Northern Africa. Based in France, Mr. Lares has held various senior executive positions at TravelCLICK, Luxury Lifestyle Hotels & Resorts, SynXis, Relais & Châteaux and Disneyland Resort Paris.
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Brian Kotula has joined Travel Tripper’s sales team. Mr. Kotula was most recently Director of Sales and Corporate Marketing Manager at Open Hospitality, and had earlier served as Regional Vice President of Sales for HotelREVMax and as Vice President of Business Development and Sales, Northeastern United States, for Luxe Worldwide Hotels..
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Scott Alvis has been hired by Amadeus IT as Senior Vice President of Client Management for the Americas region, following a 19-year career at Sabre focused on strategy, marketing and technology planning.
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Frederic Danschutter has been appointed to International Channel Partner Manager at Guestline, based in Belgium and heading Guestline’s expansion into the European hotel market.
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Prakash Shukla, Senior Vice President, Technology and Chief Information Officer for Taj Hotels, has joined HTNG’s board of directors. Based in Mumbai, India and with a background in major IT corporations such as Unisys / Sperry and IBM, he is currently responsible for all IT deployments at the 60-property Taj Group worldwide.
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PROPERTY MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS

  • Miraval Arizona picks Agilysys’ Visual One PMS, InfoGenesis POS and Guest eMarketing
  • Seven Seas Computers migrating Momentohs Sprint PMS to Microsoft’s Windows Azure cloud
  • Ariane Systems announces early 2011 launch date for remote check-in/check-out VIKI project
  • Fairmont Hotels & Resorts installs RDPWin at three more Fairmont Heritage Place sites
  • Brend Hotels contracts with Guestline for centralized Rezlynx PMS and Roomlynx channel manager at six properties
  • MICROS launches two-way interface between OPERA, myfidelio.net and RateTiger’s RTConnect

Miraval Arizona has selected Agilysys’ Visual One property management system, InfoGenesis POS and Guest eMarketing (GeM) system for its 118-room Tucson-based spa resort. (www.miravalresorts.com, www.agilysys.com)
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Dubai-based Seven Seas Computers has announced plans to migrate its mid-level Momentohs Sprint PMS onto Microsoft’s Windows Azure cloud architecture by year end 2010. (www.sscomp.ae)
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Ariane Systems has announced an early 2011 launch date for its VIKI project, which will allow guests to check-in/check-out from their desktop, laptop, smartphone or cell phone. VIKI will incorporate online mobile payment and will enable users to modify their client profiles. Ariane Systems’ partners in developing VIKI include LIP6 (a research center specializing in telecommunications and information technology), Lemon Way (mobile applications and mobile banking technologies) and Hotel Performance. (www.ariane-systems.com)
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Fairmont Hotels & Resorts has installed Resort Data Processing’s RDPWin at three more Fairmont Heritage Place sites (Whistler B.C., Miramar Beach, FL and Ghirardelli Square, San Francisco CA) and will add a fourth (Acapulco Mexico) later this year. (www.fairmontheritageplace.com, www.resortdata.com)
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UK-based Brend Hotels has contracted with Guestline to implement its Rezlynx web based property management system and Roomlynx channel manager at six properties, on a centralized architecture basis hosted at Guestline’s data centre. (www.brend-hotels.co.uk, www.guestline.com)
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MICROS Systems has launched a two-way XML-based interface between its OPERA PMS/CRS and myfidelio.net systems and RateTiger’s RTConnect channel management system. The interface also includes RTConnect’s Rate shopping functionality. (www.ratetiger.com, www.micros.com)
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RESERVATIONS

  • FastBooking’s iPhone app named best mobile application by Web Marketing Association
  • Gleneagles Hotel signs with Pegasus for Global Commission Processing Services
  • Onetech Solution implements InnLink CRS for Vagabond Inns and independent properties
  • La Quinta extends relationship with Pegasus
  • Marriott adds Marriott ExecuStay and Autograph Collection brands to Pegasus commission processing contract
  • TRAVELCLICK to offer Advantage Reserve voice reservation services to iHotelier users
  • Mandarin Oriental launches interactive mobile Web site
  • Travelocity offers both opaque and regular hotel rates in single search window

FastBooking’s iPhone application has been named the best mobile application in the Web Marketing Association’s Internet Advertising Competition. (www.fastbooking.net)
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The Gleneagles Hotel has signed a contract with Pegasus Solutions for Global Commission Processing Services. (www.gleneagles.com, www.pegs.com)
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Onetech Solution has implemented InnLink central reservation services for its Vagabond Inn Chain and all its independent properties, including a two-way interface between its Onetech PMS and InnLink’s Windsurfer CRS. (www.onetechsolution.com, www.innlink.com)
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La Quinta Inns & Suites has extended and expanded its relationship with Pegasus Solutions for its RezView central reservations system (moving later to Pegasus RezView NG) and global commission processing services.
Marriott International has expanded its relationship with Pegasus Solutions by adding its Marriott ExecuStay and Autograph Collection brands to its Global Commission Processing Services contract. The two brands currently represent over 220 properties worldwide.
(www.lq.com,www.marriott.com, www.pegs.com)
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TRAVELCLICK has signed a preferred provider agreement allowing it to offer Advantage Reserve’s voice reservation services to hotels using TRAVELCLICK’s iHotelier central reservations system. (www.travelclick.net, www.advantagereserve.com)
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Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has launched an interactive mobile Web site in conjunction with Siteworx, Inc., integrated with a booking engine provided by Sabre Hospitality Solutions which allows users to book and manage their room or suite, spa and/or dining reservations. (www.mandarinoriental.com, www.sabrehospitality.com, www.siteworx.com)
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Travelocity now offers both unpublished (“opaque”) hotel deals and regular hotel rates in a single search window, claiming to be the first major online travel site to do so. Its Top Secret Hotels listings offer deeply-discounted rates without naming the exact hotel until the booking is complete, and also displays user ratings on ten aspects such as cleanliness, location, staff/ service and room quality. (www.travelocity.com)
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MARKETING / MANAGEMENT

  • DB Technology issues release 3.31 of RAS data extraction/reporting system
  • Campbell Lodging picks eMax Hotel Internet Marketing to create websites for 16 properties

DB Technology has issued release 3.31 of its RAS data extraction/reporting system. Enhancements include the ability to set and save queries in RAS, a “forgot password” feature to allow users to reset their passwords and access RAS without making a call to the support desk, and the ability to edit user defined fields without opening a report. (www.dbtech.com)
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Campbell Lodging has chosen eMax Hotel Internet Marketing to create independent websites for all 16 of its hotel properties. eMax offers a guaranteed 10x return on its websites. (www.cmpm.net, www.eMaxhotelmarketing.com)
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REVENUE MANAGEMENT

  • Radisson Blu Martinez Hotel, Beirut installs EzRMS Internet Product Suite
  • Hôtel Napoléon, Paris, France deploys EzRMS Core Module, Ez-QUOTE
  • Open Hospitality extends Website booking engine to hotel Facebook pages, portal websites
  • MICROS launches two-way interface between OPERA, myfidelio.net and RateTiger’s RTConnect

The Radisson Blu Martinez Hotel in Beirut, Lebanon has become the twelfth Radisson Blu property to install Easy (Ez) Revenue Management Systems’ Internet Product Suite, including the EzRMS Core Module, Ez-QUOTE and a data-extraction interface to its MICROS Opera PMS.
The 101-room Hôtel Napoléon in Paris, France is deploying EzRMS Core Module, Ez-QUOTE and a data extraction interface to its MICROS Opera V2.5 PMS.
(www.radissonblu.com, www.hotelnapoleonparis.com, www.EasyRMS.com)
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Open Hospitality has extended its Website booking engine’s distribution choices to include hotel Facebook pages and portal websites such as www.booknewyorkcitynow and www.bookmiaminow.com, in addition to its existing partnerships with TripAdvisor, Kayak, the TRUE direct booking travel agent program and traditional GDS and OTA distribution services. (www.OpenHospitality.com)
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MICROS Systems has launched a two-way XML-based interface between its OPERA PMS/CRS and myfidelio.net systems and RateTiger’s RTConnect channel management system. The interface also includes RTConnect’s Rate shopping functionality. (www.ratetiger.com, www.micros.com)
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SALES & CATERING, MEETING PLANNING

  • Experient implements StarCite as official electronic RFP (eRFP) sourcing platform
  • Hyatt integrates Envision sales application with Cvent Supplier Network eRFP platform
  • Lanyon releases Rate Parity application to compare consumer Website rates with corporate negotiated rates
  • Benchmark Hospitality announces annual Top Ten Meeting Trends

Experient, a meeting planning, registration, housing and lead retrieval company, has implemented StarCite as its official electronic RFP (eRFP) sourcing platform. (www.starcite.com, www.experient-inc.com)
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Hyatt has integrated its proprietary Envision sales application with the Cvent Supplier Network electronic Request for Proposal (RFP) platform for meetings and events. All RFPs sent to full service Hyatt properties through the Cvent Supplier Network will automatically appear in the Envision system, speeding up response time and accuracy in quoting. (www.cvent.com)
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Lanyon has released its Rate Parity application to address the impact of hotel consumer Website rates on corporate negotiated-rate programs. Beta tests found rates available online for less than the negotiated corporate rate at preferred properties in 30% of corporate bookings, with online rates that were lower by up to 55%. Lanyon Rate Parity automatically checks multiple consumer Websites for pricing at preferred properties and generates a detailed report for corporate travel buyers to bring these rates to the attention of their preferred partners for discussion and/or negotiation. (www.lanyon.com)
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Benchmark Hospitality has announced its annual “Top Ten Meeting Trends” as observed by its properties in 2010.
– #1: Cautiously Optimistic for 2010, Strong Pacing for 2011. Booking pace is already ahead of 2009 and up noticeably for 2011, emphasizing the importance of solid planner-provider relationships.
– #2: Booking in the Month, for the Month in 2010. The booking window for corporate meetings remains very short term (30 – 45 days) and is basically in the month for the month. Fortunately, cancellations are much rarer.
– #3: Extreme Price Sensitivity. Hotels must once again compete for meetings business with aggressive package pricing with high perceived value.
– #4:- Meeting Groups are smaller, stay a day less. Group size is down (in some cases by 50 percent); meetings tend to be regional vs. national, are much more serious (fewer social functions) and shorter by at least a day.
– #5: Being Green is generally assumed but is required for certain segments. Federal & State governments and education business require properties to meet basic green hospitality requirements to even be considered.
– #6: No Frills Meetings are ROI driven. With tight and highly scrutinized budgets meeting spending is seriously conservative, highly image conscious and focused on the basics with little room for spa, golf or teambuilding activities.
– #7: Maximum Internet bandwidth is expected, ahead of all other technology demands. Planners come to negotiations expecting that all current meeting technology will be installed but demanding maximum connectivity.
– #8: Fierce price negotiations, concessions expected. Planners’ negotiation skills have been carefully honed over the last 12-18 months; they expect significant concessions but appreciate the value of the complete meeting package.
– #9: Health-conscious food & beverage options, buffets for all. A healthy diet can significantly help keep meeting participants attentive, and healthy buffets are seen as perfectly acceptable for all, for the first time.
– #10: Social Media gaining ground for specific uses. Corporate meetings still rely on face-to-face contact, not Facebook. LinkedIn and Trip Advisor are growing in importance to planners for information and customer feedback on properties they are considering, and some planners use Facebook to “friend” sales executives from provider properties with whom they’ve already developed a relationship.
(www.benchmarkhospitality.com)
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F&B/POINT OF SALE

  • Agilysys releases InfoGenesis version 4.1.6
  • ReServe Interactive releases version 2010 Spring
  • Mandarin Oriental selects InfoGenesis for Barcelona and Las Vegas
  • MICROS to use Odyssey ‘s Athena remote management software for its hardware line

Agilysys has released version 4.1.6 of its InfoGenesis POS system. Enhancements include printing and spooling of scheduled reports, check labeling at tender time, VAT categorization on receipts, rounding of cash tenders, enhanced model buttons and themes and a Daily Sales Report with cashier, terminal and meal period groupings. (www.agilysys.com)
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ReServe Interactive has released version 2010 Spring, the first of two annual releases. Enhancements have been made to the Catering & Event Management and Dining Reservation & Table Management modules; new features include PCI-compliant credit card management, the ReServe University training and support tool, and ReServeIT/ReQuestIT Web 2.0 for processing dining reservations and event inquiries via the Internet. (www.reserveinteractive.com)
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Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group has selected Agilysys’ InfoGenesis POS system for its new hotels in Barcelona and Las Vegas. The Barcelona property is also using the ResPAK restaurant management application to optimize table usage and personalize dining services. (www.mandarinoriental.com, www.agilysys.com))
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MICROS Systems will use Odyssey Software’s Athena remote management software for its MICROS hardware line, including MICROS Workstation 4LX, MICROS Workstation 5 and the MICROS Keyboard Workstation 270. The Odyssey software will help MICROS to detect and resolve device problems such as incorrect configuration settings. (www.odysseysoftware.com, www.micros.com)
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GUEST SERVICES

  • Shutters on the Beach implements Runtriz
  • Crown Plaza Copenhagen Towers equips gym with electricity-generating exercise bikes
  • TeleAdapt to resell WorldConnect’s Swiss Travel Products and SKROSS travel adapters
  • Quadriga picks Teleste’s Luminato digital TV headend technology
  • Swisscom’s Hospitality Services Plus subsidiary acquiring Wayport’s EMEA operations
  • Ipswitch releases version 14.2 of WhatsUp Gold IT management suite
  • B. F. Saul Company installs hotel ServicePro mobile asset management/guest service system in 18 hotels
  • InterContinental pilot-testing Apple iPads with Concierge teams in four properties
  • Omni Chicago implements GBCBlue’s ORION system for on-line guest service requests

The 198-room Shutters on the Beach hotel in Santa Monica, CA has implemented Runtriz to provide property services via guests’ personal 3G mobile devices or smartphones. Guests can set a wake-up call, order room service, request luggage pick-up, purchase show tickets, make dinner reservations and more. Guests without an appropriate phone will be offered a pre-loaded iPod Touch at check-in. (www.shuttersonthebeach.com, www.runtriz.com)
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The 366-room Crown Plaza Copenhagen Towers in Denmark has equipped its guest gym with electricity-generating exercise bikes, which have iPhones mounted on the handlebars to monitor how much power is being produced. Electricity generated by the guests’ exercise is fed into the mains supply of the hotel; any guest producing 10 watt hours or more will be rewarded with a free meal. If successful after a year’s pilot test, the scheme may be rolled out to all 21 Crowne Plaza hotels in the UK. (www.cpcopenhagen.dk)
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TeleAdapt has signed a distribution agreement with WorldConnect AG to resell its Swiss Travel Products and SKROSS travel adapters, USB chargers and power plugs. (www.swisstravelproducts.com, www.teleadapt.com)
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Quadriga Worldwide has extended its partnership agreement with Teleste by selecting Teleste’s Luminato digital TV headend technology. Luminato provides a single technology for both coaxial and IP networks to deliver digital TV channels to multiple guest rooms, and is significantly reduced in size compared to its predecessor. It will also enable Quadriga to support encrypted HD TV channels via its Sensiq solution. (www.teleste.com, www.quadriga.com)
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Swisscom’s Hospitality Services Plus SA subsidiary is acquiring Wayport Holdings A/S, an AT&T company currently providing High-Speed internet Access and network systems to approximately 300 hotels in Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Swisscom intends to merge Wayport’s EMEA operations with its own and assume all existing contractual obligations; AT&T will continue to own and operate the former Wayport assets in the United States. (www.swisscom.com/Hospitality/)
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Ipswitch’s Network Management Division has released version 14.2 of its WhatsUp Gold IT management suite, which now includes built-in redundancy and Unix/Linux monitoring functionality as well as improved reporting, performance and usability updates to WhatsConfigured, WhatsConnected and FlowMonitor. (www.whatsupgold.com, www.lodgenet.com)
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The B. F. Saul Company Hotel Division has installed hotel SystemsPro’s hotel ServicePro web-based, mobile asset management and guest service system in its 18 hotels, enabling service improvements such as:
– Front desk staff keying in guest service requests so all service items are tracked in one place and backed up with flexible reporting.
– Property engineers sending and receiving work tickets as text messages.
– Managers sending questions or requests via their mobile devices to engineering, housekeeping or the front desk while walking the properties.
– Faster and simpler automated service follow-up to staff members or guests.
– Reduced customer complaints through automatically scheduled routine preventive maintenance.
(www.bfsaulhotels.com, www.hotelsystemspro.com)
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InterContinental Hotels & Resorts is providing Apple iPads to its Concierge teams in pilot tests at its New York Barclay, Buckhead Atlanta, London Park Lane and Hong Kong properties. InterContinental is evaluating the potential improvement of Concierge interaction with guests via Enhanced Maps and Directions (through interactive maps with high-resolution satellite imagery, close-up street views and detailed walking routes, Video Recommendations (using Concierge teams’ destination specific videos) and Instant Booking Confirmations (restaurant, performance and attraction bookings illustrated with images and text, with bookings made and confirmed by e-mail). (www.intercontinental.com)
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The Omni Chicago Hotel has implemented GBCBlue’s ORION system to allow guests to order a variety of services on-line, including room service, valet and housekeeping requests. (www.omnihotels.com, www.gbcblue.com)
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BACK OFFICE

  • American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute makes Hospitality iCoach training tips available via iTunes
  • NORTHWIND adds Shift4 credit card payment services to Maestro PMS
  • MICROS offers Trustwave services to help clients with PCI-DSS compliance
  • Hilton Worldwide outsources technology infrastructure to IBM

The American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute (EI) has made its Hospitality iCoach on-line training tips and hints available via Apple’s iTunes service for hotel staff and managers to download onto their iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad devices. The training advice covers five different areas: front desk, housekeeping, food and beverage, maintenance, and leadership. Users can use the Hospitality iCoach menu to select a functional area for which to receive a training message, or can simply get a random tip from any of the areas by shaking the device.( www.ei-ahla.org)
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NORTHWIND has added Shift4 credit card payment services to its Maestro PMS application, including a fully-tokenized interface for payment card processing. Tokenization exceeds the Payment Card Industry’s Payment Application Data Security Standard (PA-DSS) compliance requirements and enables operators to choose any payment processor they like to obtain the lowest fees. (www.shift4.com, www.maestropms.com)
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MICROS Systems has partnered with Trustwave to offer Trustwave’s Unified Threat Management (UTM) service and TrustKeeper 3.0 to its clients, helping them achieve and maintain compliance with the Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard (PCI DSS). The managed Unified Threat Management (UTM) service enhances the security offered by Micros’ existing tokenization functionality; the TrustKeeper 3.0 Web portal helps streamline compliance validation. (www.trustwave.com, www.micros.com)
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Hilton Worldwide has outsourced its technology infrastructure to IBM, which will host and manage the technology platforms that support Hilton’s ten brands. The contract includes data center management and monitoring, global email services, web hosting and the central guest reservation system. IBM will host the technology infrastructure at its Smarter Data Center in Research Triangle Park (RTP), North Carolina; the overall technology transition process is expected to occur in phases over the next several months. (www.hiltonworldwide.com, www.ibm.com)
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ENGINEERING

  • Hilton’s LightStay system calculates and analyzes properties’ environmental impact

Hilton Worldwide has unveiled its LightStay system, developed to calculate and analyze environmental impact. The first full-year of findings show that the 1,300 properties using the system reduced energy use by 5 percent, carbon output by 6 percent, waste output by 10 percent and water use by 2.4 percent, results that were independently audited and adjusted for differences in occupancy levels and major weather events year over year. The system measures indicators across 200 operational practices including housekeeping, paper product use, food waste, chemical storage, air quality and transportation, and includes a “meeting impact calculator” that measures the environmental impact of any meeting or conference held at a Hilton Worldwide property. This latter feature enables meeting planners and corporate travel managers to consider the environmental impact of hotel stays and meetings when making purchasing decisions, and provides corporate customers with meeting impact data to include in their own sustainability reporting. All 3,500 Hilton Worldwide properties will use LightStay by the end of 2011. (www.hiltonworldwide.com)
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COMMUNICATIONS

  • Swisscom Hospitality Services and ENTIRETEC partner to provide complete multi-site networking services
  • Kratsa Properties implements ITG Networks wired/wireless networks at Residence Inn by Marriott on Pittsburgh’s North Shore
  • Candlewood Suites in LaCrosse, Wisconsin implements Defero3’s hosted voice solution

Swisscom Hospitality Services and ENTIRETEC have partnered to provide complete multi-site networking services to the international hotel industry, offering a single source for all networking and data security needs. ENTIRETEC designs and manages highly available and fully secured local and wide area networks for all types of data, including speech and video in real time, and already serves major hotel chains with a wide range of services and products in IP communication as well as a remotely managed IT backbone. Swisscom specializes in building and provisioning hotel local area networks (LANs); it is experienced in integrating multiple applications and in monitoring them remotely through its advanced network management tools. (www.swisscom.com/Hospitality/)
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Kratsa Properties contracted with ITG Networks to install and support a wired and wireless network infrastructure for the new 180-room Residence Inn by Marriott hotel on Pittsburgh’s North Shore, which opened on April 5th. The property offers wireless, high-speed Internet access throughout, with wired access in all guest rooms. The hotel lobby offers a large social laptop table with twelve built-in Ethernet and power outlets. A VOIP capable, Mitel SX200 ICP phone switch provides communication to both guestroom and administrative operations; each guest room has a Telematrix 9600 Series cordless telephone and matching 3300 Series 5-button speakerphones. (www.marriott.com , www.itgnetworks.com)
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The Candlewood Suites in LaCrosse, Wisconsin, managed by Kinseth Hospitality Companies, is implementing Defero3’s hosted voice solution. (www.kinseth.com, www.defero3.com)
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SECURITY

  • Microsoft invites OpenWays to join its BizSpark start-up assistance program
  • Bogota Marriott Hotel installs VingCard Signature electronic door locks and Elsafe SENTINEL II in-room safes
  • Hotel Okura Amsterdam completes installation of VingCard Signature RFID locks
  • Townsend Hotel in Birmingham, Detroit, implements SAFLOK Quantum wireless locks

Microsoft has invited OpenWays to join its BizSpark program, launched in late 2008 to help promising new companies with software, support and visibility to organizations focused on the start-up community. OpenWays recently launched its technology to deliver encrypted sound signals to cell phones that enable them to open appropriately-equipped guestroom door locks. (www.openways.com, www.microsoft.com)
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The 239-room Bogota Marriott Hotel, Bogota, Colombia has installed VingCard Signature electronic door locks and Elsafe SENTINEL II in-room safes.
The 301-room Hotel Okura Amsterdam in the Netherlands has completed the installation of its VingCard Signature RFID contactless electronic door locks throughout.
(www.okura.nl, www.marriott.com/bogmc, www.vingcard.com, www.elsafe.com)
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The 150-room Townsend Hotel in Birmingham, a Detroit suburb, has implemented SAFLOK Quantum wireless locks throughout, replacing an older hard-wired locking system. The locks are operated by SAFLOK’s System 6000 application, communicating with each lock via SAFLOK’s Messenger bi-directional wireless system, a ZigBee-compliant platform that includes Messenger LENS (Lock Event Notification System) functionality. (www.townsendhotel.com, www.saflok.com)
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