February 16, 2010

In this issue…

People on the Move

Property Management Systems

Reservations

Marketing / Management

Revenue Management

Sales & Catering, Meeting Planning

F&B / POS

Spa/Golf/Leisure

Guest Services

Back Office

Inventory / Purchasing

Engineering

Security

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FEBRUARY 3 – 16, 2010

TOP O’ THE NEWS

  • Keeping an open mind

A couple of things recently got me thinking about the issue of over-personalization, or more precisely of external forces working to confine us to the limits of what they know about us and making us less complete, less human as a result. One was the issue of the personal preferences property management and guest information systems keep about us. On the one hand it’s definitely useful for a resort to keep information on our typical likes and dislikes so that we don’t have to keep on asking for the same things, such as feather pillows, on every visit.
On the other, just because I’ve been canoeing on every visit so far doesn’t mean that this is all I want to do on future visits, when there are dozens of alternative activities I might prefer instead. Don’t limit me to just what little you know about me from past behavior. If I’ve ordered a good cabernet with dinner on the last three occasions, I don’t necessarily want it with every meal in the future; it may just be that I like good wine, and next time will order a similar quality level of wine that goes with whatever I feel like eating that night. Keep an eye on the forest, not the trees.
Similarly, I’m disturbed by Google’s recent unilateral decision to filter your search results (unless you specifically disable the feature)to give priority to topics you’ve searched before. This can be useful if it returns more relevant results but it will also suppress information I might not have been specifically looking for but would find useful, interesting or both. I want my search engine to be completely impartial, not to feed me information it thinks is good for me. That’s what propaganda machines do.
This same trend is all too easy to fall into in our general lives. There’s so much information on the Internet and TV tailored to very specific viewpoints that it’s way too easy to restrict your viewing and listening to only those channels that support your singular mindset. But such an exclusionary approach is dangerously divisive; if I never hear your viewpoint, let alone find even a glimpse of how you came to your conclusions, how am I going to understand and get along with you? Of such narrow divisions are society’s walls built. I’m all in favor of unfettered freedom of speech, but I think it would be hugely valuable to introduce a random element somewhere that occasionally slips in an opposing viewpoint, just to get our minds working.
Walt Whitman put it succinctly, as always: “Do I contradict myself? Very well then I contradict myself, (I am large, I contain multitudes.)”
Let us be the complex, multi-faceted beings we really are. Stimulate our minds and experiences, don’t limit them; it’s the only way we can grow.
What’s your opinion? Am I worrying too much about this? Go to my Website (www.joninge.com) and post your comments.
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PEOPLE ON THE MOVE

  • Michelle Young joins PAR Springer-Miller Systems as Director of Sales – West
  • Dan Smith hired by Telkonet as Energy Management Sales Associate
  • Paul Barron joins Newmarket as Vice President of Global Accounts

Michelle Young has joined PAR Springer-Miller Systems as Director of Sales – West. Ms. Young brings extensive hospitality experience, most recently as Regional Vice President, Hospitality Solutions Group for SoftBrands, where she served for four years. She had previously held positions with Siemens Information Systems, Wayport and Sulcus Hospitality Ltd.
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Dan Smith has been hired by Telkonet as Energy Management Sales Associate. Mr. Smith brings over twenty years experience, including managing sales for ASSA ABLOY as well as sales management positions at Acosta, Shasta and Procter & Gamble.
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Paul Barron has joined Newmarket International as Vice President of Global Accounts. Mr. Barron was most recently vice president of IT solutions, property operations and global development for Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide.
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PROPERTY MANAGEMENT SYSTEMS

  • Holiday Club Resorts picks SPI Software’s Orange Systems enterprise
  • Pousadas de Portugal implements MICROS’ OPERA Enterprise for 39 properties
  • Barceló Hotels and Resorts extends relationship with Xn Hotel Systems for 4.5 years

Finland-based Holiday Club Resorts has selected SPI Software’s Orange Systems enterprise software as its future software technology platform. (www.spisoftware.com)
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Pousadas de Portugal, owned and operated by The Pestana Group, has implemented MICROS Systems’ OPERA Enterprise suite at all of its 39 properties in Portugal. Modules installed include Multi-Property Management (OPMS), Reservations (ORS), Web Services (OWS) and the MICROS 9700 POS Hospitality Management System (HMS). The Pestana Group is expanding its use of MICROS systems to some of its other properties in Europe, Africa and South America, and recently combined three other regional OPERA PMS operations into one Lisbon data center that now supports 25 of its properties in Portugal, UK and the Republic of São Tomé. (www.pousadas.pt, www.pestana.com, www.micros.com)
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Spanish-based Barceló Hotels and Resorts has extended its ten-year relationship with Xn Hotel Systems for protel MPE PMS, Xn globalRES CRS, POS and electronic distribution services for a further 4.5 years. Barceló manages 187 hotels in over 15 countries. (www.barcelo-hotels.co.uk, www.xnhotels.com)
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RESERVATIONS

  • Statler Hotel signs with SynXis
  • RezStream releases two-way PMS interface with SynXis
  • Marina Mandarin Singapore installing Leisurepoint for corporate bookers program
  • AT&T Interactive signs with Hotels.com for rate/room availability and booking services on local search websites
  • Jin Jiang International Hotels contracts with Genares
  • BCD Travel signs reseller’s agreement with Sabre Travel Network’s GetThere

The Statler Hotel, staffed and run by students from Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration, has signed with Sabre Hospitality Solutions’ SynXis CRS for GDS and ADS connectivity services and Website and mobile online booking functions. The SynXis system will also be integrated with the Statler’s Opera Property Management System.
RezStream has released a two-way interface with Sabre’s SynXis CRS for its RezStream Professional property management system, providing real-time availability and rate uploads to SynXis and new reservation downloads.
(www.statlerhotel.cornell.edu, www.rezstream.com, www.sabrehospitality.com)
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The 575-room Marina Mandarin Singapore is installing Leisurepoint for its Waves Rewards Club corporate bookers program. The Marina Mandarin is managed by Meritus Hotels & Resorts, which is implementing Leisurepoint (supplied by Xn Hotel Systems Pte Ltd) at multiple properties. (www.meritus-hotels.com, www.xnhotels.com)
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AT&T Interactive has signed with Expedia’s Hotels.com subsidiary to provide hotel rate and room availability data and room booking services on its YELLOWPAGES.COM and YP.COM local search websites. (www.hotels.com, www.attinteractive.com)
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Jin Jiang International Hotels has contracted with Genares Worldwide for reservations services, including its gReserve CRS and GDS/ADS connectivity, for 51 properties throughout China. Genares is also supplying a proprietary booking engine interfaced with the brand’s web site. (www.jinjianghotels.com, www.genares.com)
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BCD Travel has signed a formal reseller’s agreement with Sabre Travel Network’s GetThere, which offers self-booking programs to mid-size and large multi-national corporations in 76 countries. While several BCD Travel clients already use GetThere, formalizing the agreement will help BCD Travel influence future enhancements and will provide access to GetThere customer service resources. (www.bcdtravel.com, www.getthere.com)
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MARKETING / MANAGEMENT

  • MMG Worldwide signs with BlueKai for anonymous shopping data
  • Best Western adopts VFM Leonardo’s VScape Digital Asset Management System, names it preferred rich media distributor

Hospitality marketing form MMG Worldwide has signed with BlueKai for anonymous shopping data extracted from travel websites, including online travel agencies and travel meta-search sites, to help its clients understand and reach their target audiences more effectively. (www.bluekai.com, www.mmgworldwide.com)
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Best Western International has adopted VFM Leonardo’s VScape Digital Asset Management System and named it as the preferred distributor of rich media for Best Western properties. VScape will be integrated with Best Western’s internal database to allow photos to be updated and displayed across thousands of electronic channels in VFM Leonardo’s VNetwork distribution network. (www.bestwestern.com, www.vfmleonardo.com)
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REVENUE MANAGEMENT

  • EZYield.com channel management transactions up 500% in January 2010 compared to prior year
  • The Rainmaker Group attains Gold Certified Partner status in Microsoft Partner Program
  • EasyRMS appoints WISH Technologies FZE as a distributor for Middle East and India
  • Gubse AG integrates RateTiger RTConnect into its Sihot PMS
  • Room Mate Hotels picks RateTiger’s RTSuite Allocator for all 17 properties
  • IDeaS Revenue Optimization celebrates 20th anniversary

EZYield.com announced that 5.3 million rate and inventory updates were processed through its channel management system during January 2010, a 500 percent increase over January 2009. Throughout the 3,000-property customer base, more yields were registered from a unique IP address, which corresponds with more users yielding from a variety of sources. (www.ezyield.com)
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The Rainmaker Group has attained Gold Certified Partner status in the Microsoft Partner Program with a competency as an Independent Software Vendor (ISV). (www.letitrain.com)
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Easy Revenue Management Systems has appointed UAE-based WISH Technologies FZE as a distributor for the Middle East and India, working in collaboration with EasyRMS’ existing Middle East partner, DuncanBramwell&Company. (www.wishtechnologies.ae, www.easyrms.com)
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Gubse AG has integrated eRevMax International’s RateTiger RTConnect bi-directional channel management system into its Sihot PMS. The interface will also process Internet bookings directly into the PMS.
Spanish-based Room Mate Hotels has selected RateTiger’s RTSuite Allocator channel manager for all its 17 properties, including New York, Miami Beach, Buenos Aires and Mexico City as well as throughout Spain.
(www.gubse.com, www.room-matehotels.com, www.ratetiger.com)
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IDeaS Revenue Optimization is celebrating its 20th anniversary, having delivered its first Revenue Management System in 1990. Acquired by SAS Institute in 2008, IDeaS now has over 250 employees and provides revenue optimization services to more than 1,600 hotel properties worldwide. (www.ideas.com)
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SALES & CATERING, MEETING PLANNING

  • Kimpton expands listings on Cvent Supplier Network to all properties
  • Cvent reports major year-on-year growth in RFPs distributed
  • PSAV partners with Aptilo Networks for high-speed wireless Internet access services

Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants has upgraded its listings on the Cvent Supplier Network to now cover all properties.
Cvent announced significant growth of its Cvent Supplier Network in 2009 since its launch in late 2008. Over 160,000 RFPs were distributed to meeting venues in 2009, with almost 100,000 gross RFPs in the fourth quarter, a 1000% increase over Q4 2008.
(www.KimptonHotels.com, www.cvent.com)
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PSAV Presentation Services has contracted with Aptilo Networks for high-speed wireless Internet access services for its hospitality customers. PSAV will deploy Aptilo’s platform via its PSAV Meeting Room Manager; the combined services are expected to be live at more than 60 hotels in the U.S. and Canada by March 2010. (www.psav.com, www.aptilo.com)
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F&B/POINT OF SALE

  • HSI releases version 8.02 of Profit Series POS, with tokenization-based Secure Payment Gateway

HSI has released version 8.02 of its Profit Series POS, incorporating a Secure Payment Gateway (SPG), which uses tokenization to assign a “single use” token to credit card data and remove all cardholder data from the POS. (web.hsi-solutions.com)
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SPA/GOLF/LEISURE

  • Mira Hong Kong selects PAR Springer Miller’s SpaSoft

The Mira Hong Kong has selected PAR Springer Miller’s SpaSoft system for its 18,000+ sq. ft. spa and wellness facility. (www.themirahotel.com, www.springermiller.com) **

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GUEST SERVICES

  • Guest Tek’s OneView high speed Internet platform has its 100 millionth user login
  • Joie de Vivre rolling out Joie Connect in-room entertainment and media platform based on Apple Mac Mini
  • Peaks Resort installs Telkonet’s EthoStream wireless HSIA service
  • Acentic opens Middle East office to oversee nine regional distributors
  • Yahoo applies for patent on mobile ad technology based on where a traveler is likely to be heading
  • Langham Hotels International launches Langham Touch iPhone app with voice-enabled travel phrases

Guest Tek Interactive announced that its OneView high speed Internet platform has had its 100 millionth user login. (www.guest-tek.com)
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Joie de Vivre is rolling out its Joie Connect in-room entertainment and media platform, starting with Sacramento’s The Citizen Hotel. Joie Connect, powered by Paris-based Direct Streams, provides integrated media portals to the Internet, video on-demand, and guest services via an Apple Mac Mini in every room, along with 42″ flat screen televisions, wireless keyboards, and streamlined remotes. In addition to video on demand and Internet access, guests will be able order room service or view their bill on-line. (www.direct-streams.com, www.jdvhotels.com)
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The 174-room Peaks Resort has installed Telkonet’s EthoStream wireless HSIA service into all guestrooms and suites, along with Telkonet’s customer support, network infrastructure management and ISP connectivity for an initial term of three years. (www.thepeaksresort.com, www.telkonet.com)
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Acentic has opened a Middle East office to oversee its nine main affiliated regional distributors for its digital interactive hotel TV systems over coaxial and IP networks. A new Acentic Panorama IP in-room Hotel Entertainment Platform developed for the Middle East will be released in Q2, 2010. (www.acentic.com)
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Yahoo has applied for a patent for mobile ad technology based on a determination of a traveler’s direction of travel and destination, serving up ads appropriate to where they are likely to be going. (www.yahoo.com)
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Langham Hotels International has launched its Langham Touch iPhone app with voice-enabled travel phrases, enabling guests to search and view city locations and information without going online. The phrases include directions to the hotel from virtually anywhere in the city in the local language, including Chinese, Mandarin, and Thai. Langham Touch also provides access to a mini-city guide which includes cultural insider tips and recommendations to attractions, restaurants and bars, and includes hotlines for room reservations, hotel information and options to order room service, ask for a wake-up call and make restaurant reservations. (www.langhamhotels.com)
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BACK OFFICE

  • Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel, Vancouver, BC installs FOUNDATION LogicSystems’ Linen Manager, Uniform Manager

The new 377-room Fairmont Pacific Rim hotel in Vancouver, BC, Canada has installed FOUNDATION LogicSystems’ Linen Manager and Uniform Manager applications, which use Fujitsu Frontech UHF RFID tags. This latest RFID tag technology has raised the read range from 12 inches to over 6 feet, making it possible to read the contents of a large laundry hamper without having to unload it. (www.fairmont.com/pacificrim, www.foundlogic.com)
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INVENTORY/PURCHASING

  • DataWorks releases NeXT inventory management software in SaaS format

DataWorks announced the release of its NeXT inventory management software as being available in a Software as a Service (SaaS) format, available through the Internet for a monthly fee. (www.dataworksinc.com)
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ENGINEERING

  • Bardessono awarded LEED Platinum certification

Bardessono, MTM Luxury Lodging’s Napa valley property, has been awarded LEED Platinum certification, the highest LEED level and one reached by only two other hotels in the world. Among the hotel’s sustainable practices are a 200-kw roof-top solar power installation, 72 300-ft. geothermal wells to heat and cool rooms and heat domestic water, guestroom heat control through wide overhangs and occupancy-sensor managed motor-controlled exterior Venetian blinds, and LED and fluorescent lamps. (www.bardessono.com)
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SECURITY

  • The Turnberry Resort implements VingCard’s Signature RFID door locks
  • Le Méridien Qingdao installs VingCard VISION lock system with Signature door locks

The Turnberry Resort, Turnberry, Scotland has implemented VingCard’s Signature RFID door locks with NFC cell phone compatibility and Elsafe’s SENTINEL II in-room safes in all 100+ guestrooms.
The Le Méridien Qingdao, Qingdao, China has installed a VingCard VISION lock system with Signature by VingCard electronic door locks in all 348 guest rooms.
(www.turnberryresort.co.uk, www.lemeridien.com/qingdao, www.vingcard.com)
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