March 4, 2008

In this issue…

People on the Move

Property Management Systems


Marketing / Management

Revenue Management

Sales & Catering, Meeting Planning


Guest Services

Inventory / Purchasing





  • HTNG Conference showcases products, momentum, value of participation

Last week’s excellent 4th annual HTNG conference in Seattle was solid evidence of the initiative’s momentum and productivity. As usual, there were good thought leadership sessions, but this year the workgroup reports provided just as much inspiration. HTNG-certified interfaces are now available from several vendors for both the Single Guest Itinerary (which links activity-management systems to PMSs) and Property Distribution (which links PMSs with central reservations, revenue management and other systems involved in managing booking availability). Four Seasons, for example, has already implemented an SGI link between PAR Springer-Miller’s SpaSoft and MICROS’ Opera PMS.
Equally significant, though, were the presentations by InterContinental and Marriott, who are rolling out major initiatives based on HTNG’s original goal of simplifying hoteliers’ lives by providing well-integrated system sets with single-vendor installation and support. InterContinental’s “Hotel-In-A-Box” program for its new-construction limited-service brands (including Candlewood and Express Staybridge) provides all the core technology services (PMS, PBX, network, HSIA, call accounting, voice messaging, door locks, etc.) in one package installed and supported by a single vendor, in this case IBM.
Marriott’s ClearSky converged-network offering is a single network throughout a property for both guest and administrative use, with flexible bandwidth management and providing device-specific services at any point. A POS workstation plugged into a jack anywhere sees only POS communications; a guest’s laptop plugged into the same jack receives only the standard guestroom high-speed Internet access, and so on. Two properties’ installations were presented, one managed by Lorica and AT&T, the other by Guest-Tek. These are not proof-of-concept trials; they’re actual operational products.
Membership is up to 350, with the emphasis shifting more to companies than individuals. All workgroups said that they would welcome more members, especially from hoteliers, to help develop the most representative solutions. Most are re-working their structure to allow more productive use of hoteliers’ time, focusing on involving them in requirements discussions and regular specification checking rather than attending all the technical-detail definition discussions. I strongly urge all hoteliers with an interest in helping to shape integration improvements to become involved.
If you’re concerned about the time commitment, I’d pass on the comment from one hotelier who has staff on several workgroups and was asked whether this wasn’t a drain on his resources. He replied that, on the contrary, if they weren’t involved he’d worry that they might be sub-optimizing their work by focusing on areas that are being done more effectively by HTNG. In his view, HTNG participation is necessary for them to do their jobs properly. **

Back to Top…


  • Louise Meyer hired by VFM Interactive as Vice President Hotels
  • Mark Parry-Jones and Marnie Glasson join iBAHN as regional sales managers
  • Ryan Williams joins time-share specialists 6 Dimensions Consulting

Louise Meyer has been hired by VFM Interactive as Vice President Hotels. Ms. Meyer brings over 20 years of experience in travel and hotel distribution, most recently as Senior Director, Hotel and Car Sales and Marketing for Galileo.
Mark Parry-Jones and Marnie Glasson have joined iBAHN’s Asia-Pacific management team.
Mr. Parry-Jones will be regional sales director in Bangkok. With more than 15 years of experience in hospitality technology, he most recently served as regional sales director for NxTV Asia.
Ms. Glasson joins as regional sales director in Australia. She brings 18 years of experience in the Australian broadcast media, most recently as business sales manager at Australia’s Foxtel cable television network.
Ryan Williams has joined time-share specialists 6 Dimensions Consulting as Vice President of Business Development. Mr. Williams was previously a senior executive with Generator Systems (a provider of multimedia sales systems in the vacation- and shared-ownership industries), and had earlier led sales for TimeShareWare.

Back to Top…


  • Danubius Hotels picks MICROS OPERA Central Systems and 9700 POS for all 56 hotels
  • IDS Softwares appoints Caspel LLC as first-line support agent in Eurasian market
  • Mövenpick confirms protel as primary systems provider, with MICROS as the preferred alternative

Hungary-based Danubius Hotels Nyrt. has selected MICROS OPERA Central Systems and 9700 Hospitality Management System (HMS) solutions for all of its 56 hotels. The OPERA component includes OPERA Customer Information System (OCIS), Reservation System (ORS), Sales Force Administration (SFA), Web Services and Deployment will begin with 38 hotels in Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and the UK, followed by Romania, and is scheduled between September 2008 and November 2009. (,
IDS Softwares Pvt. Ltd. has appointed Caspel LLC, an IT & telecommunications company in the Azerbaijan and Georgia, as its first-line support agent in the Eurasian market, backed by IDS’ Global Support Center at Bangalore. (,
Mövenpick Hotels & Resorts’ has confirmed that protel will remain the primary provider of hotel applications for its 80 hotels and resorts, clarifying that, as announced a month ago, it has included MICROS-Fidelio as the preferred IT vendor for PMS and S&C systems for those sites looking for an alternative to protel. (,

Back to Top…


  • expands in China by partnering with DerbySoft
  • SPI contracts with LeisureLink for distribution to online travel sites and GDSs
  • SPI re-brands Enterprise software suite as Orange Systems
  • Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts implements reservations services from Trust International
  • InnLink releases interfaces to Expedia, SABRE, Micros Opera and InnQuest roomMaster 2000
  • Sabre Travel Network to launch Cubeless social networking platform mid-year
  • SynXis’ RedX Distribution Management System PCI-certified by Visa
  • Peak Resort’s Mount Snow resort picks Inntopia for Central Reservations and Internet booking
  • Thomas Cook buys UK hotel booking website
  • TripAdvisor acquires UK user-feedback travel site Holiday Watchdog
  • Marriott to distribute rooms inventory through Orbitz’ brands worldwide
  • MICROS releases XML-based direct connection between Expedia and

Priceline’s division has expanded its Chinese hotel offerings by partnering with DerbySoft, the operator of China’s hotel switch. (,
Vacation-ownership software provider Systems Products International (SPI) has contracted with vacation lodging distribution provider LeisureLink to give SPI clients access to major online travel sites and the GDSs.
SPI also announced the re-branding of its Enterprise software suite as Orange Systems, based on Microsoft’s .Net platform.
Banyan Tree Hotels and Resorts has implemented reservations services from Trust International for its 23 properties. Banyan Tree will use the Trust|Voyager CRS to connect its hotels to the GDSs and numerous websites in real time. Trust will also provide call center services. (,
InnLink has launched an initiative to improve its client hotels’ connectivity, both to reservations sources and to their PMSs. In January it released direct connectivity to Expedia’s Special Rate program to handle contracted net rates, and it has established a Next Gen Seamless connection with SABRE, allowing consumer and travel agent searches to pull rates and availability directly from InnLink CRS. InnLink also recently completed a two-way interface with Micros Opera and an interface with InnQuest’s roomMaster 2000. (
Sabre Travel Network announced plans to launch its Cubeless social networking platform mid-year, providing a communication forum within its GetThere online booking tool for corporate travel programs, initially through American Express Business Travel. Sabre has been using Cubeless internally for about six months. Sabre intends to add capabilities that would allow GetThere travelers to populate and share trip information from their Cubeless profiles, to promote awareness of common trip elements and encourage ad hoc meetings and cost savings through shared ground transportation, for example.
Sabre Holdings’ SynXis division announced today that its RedX Distribution Management System has been certified by Visa as meeting the PCI (Payment Card Industry) Data Security Standards.
Peak Resort’s recently acquired Mount Snow resort has selected Inntopia.CRS for its Central Reservation Center and Internet booking engine. (,
Thomas Cook has bought UK hotel booking website, which claims to have half a million customers and features more than 30,000 hotels. (
TripAdvisor has acquired UK user-feedback travel site Holiday Watchdog. Holiday Watchdog will continue to operate as a separate entity in TripAdvisor’s London office. Its founders will work through a transition period but have chosen not to stay with TripAdvisor long-term. (,
Marriott has agreed to distribute Marriott International guest room inventory through Orbitz’ brands worldwide, including Orbitz, CheapTickets, Orbitz for Business, ebookers and HotelClub. (,
MICROS Systems has released a new XML-based direct connection for directly contracted net rates between Expedia and its service, and then on to any of its Property Management Systems including OPERA, Fidelio Suite 8 and Fidelio Versions 6 and 7. Sunstar Hotels in Switzerland is the first customer to deploy this powerful solution. (,

Back to Top…


  • Lodging Interactive releases HotelCalendars Events Calendar for hotels
  • Smith Travel Research acquiring research and planning firm RRC Associates
  • Great Hotels Organisation picks VFM Interactive for rich media services
  • MICROS to provide VFM Interactive services to all hotels using
  • Pegasus and Leonardo to offer ContentHub single-site rich-media management and distribution service

Lodging Interactive has released its HotelCalendars Events Calendar for hotels, which allows hotel managers to tie local events into specials and packages and present a combined rolling 12 month calendar to consumers on its own Web pages and through the major search engines. (
Smith Travel Research is acquiring RRC Associates, a research and planning firm specializing in tourism and the ski industry in the United States and Canada. (
Great Hotels Organisation (GHO) has selected VFM Interactive to produce and distribute photos, virtual tours, videos, and other forms of rich media for its member hotels worldwide. GHO member hotels will have access to VFM’s Vscape digital still image management and distribution service and a Rich Media Initiative to select the media productions that best showcase their property.
MICROS Systems has contracted with VFM Interactive to provide all hotels using services with sourcing, management and distribution of hotel photos, virtual tours and videos to all electronic distribution channels.
Pegasus Solutions and Leonardo Media have partnered to offer ContentHub, a single environment for hotels to manage and distribute all of their online content. ContentHub will allow hotels to access, update and manage their images and text, and then distribute the content to all channels supported by both Pegasus and Leonardo. (,

Back to Top…


  • Rate Tiger establishes dedicated team to manage website integration
  • IDeaS forms revenue optimization consulting division, IDeaS Advantage

Revenue management and distribution vendor Rate Tiger has established a dedicated team to manage website integration, working with several Property Management Systems and Channel Management Systems to provide XML integration with RateTiger suites. Over 300 websites are currently targeted for integration. (
IDeaS has formed a consulting division, IDeaS Advantage, to help hospitality companies develop a revenue optimization culture. Operating independently from the IDeaS technology division but drawing upon IDeaS’ infrastructure and resources, IDeaS Advantage provides a range of client specific services including revenue management outsourcing services, revenue analysis and benchmarking, best practice development and hotel pre-opening support. (

Back to Top…


  • Newmarket integrates MeetingBroker with SMI’s Destination 3000 for CVB lead management
  • Sofitel London Heathrow icks Newmarket’s Delphi, MeetingBroker and Delphi Diagrams
  • Donald E. Stephens Convention and Conference Center installs FlyteBoard
  • Nexus launches HotelworX hotel industry Sales Force Automation system
  • Hyatt, Hilton to use StarCite’s on-line Small Meeting Solution
  • Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain selects UniFocus’ STAFFScope
  • Millennium Hotels and Resorts selects UniFocus’ MEETINGScope for 14 USA properties
  • MTM Luxury Lodging deploying Passkey at seven properties

Newmarket International has integrated its MeetingBroker web-based lead management system with Software Management, Inc.’s (SMI’s) Destination 3000 (D3000) Convention and Visitor Bureau system to automate lead distribution and management for participating CVBs and their member suppliers. The Chicago Convention & Tourism Bureau, an existing SMI client, will be the first CVB to go live on the integrated solution this month.
The Sofitel London Heathrow is implementing Newmarket’s Delphi S&C system, MeetingBroker RFP toolkit and Delphi Diagrams room diagramming application. The 605-room hotel with direct access to Terminal 5 will include 41 event, meeting and boardrooms.
The Donald E. Stephens Convention and Conference Center in Rosemont, IL. has installed Flyte Systems’ FlyteBoard real-time airport travel information display. Flyte Systems partnered with digital signage provider Digital Minds on the project. (,,
Nexus has launched its HotelworX hotel industry Sales Force Automation (SFA) system. HotelworX enables hotels to manage clients across all segments, plan and track sales activities and measure performance against revenue targets, and is fully integrated with Nexus’ existing Consortia and Corporate RFP and group sales lead modules. HotelworX is web based and uses Flex technology to provide the speed and ‘drag and drop’ capabilities typical of a desktop application. The system replaces Nexus’ existing account management module. (
Hyatt Hotels & Resorts has renewed its contract with StarCite and expanded it to include StarCite’s Small Meeting Solution, to provide meeting planners with real-time online access to Hyatt’s inventory of guest rooms, meeting spaces and services for meetings of 50 people or less.
Hilton Hotels Corp is integrating its eEvents real-time online small group product with StarCite’s Small Meeting Solution. Meeting planners will use StarCite SMS to gain direct access to Hilton’s inventory of guest rooms, meeting spaces, food and beverage, and audio/visual services that is bookable through the eEvents platform.
Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort & Spa has selected UniFocus’ STAFFScope Web-based feedback application to survey its employees at least twice annually. STAFFScope will capture employee feedback to determine attitudes and perceptions and establish baseline patterns to help the property improve employee morale and productivity and measure what effect employee satisfaction has on guest satisfaction and revenue.
Millennium Hotels and Resorts has selected UniFocus’ MEETINGScope for its 14 properties in the United States to gather meeting planners’ experiences and comments to improve service throughout the entire meeting event process.
MTM Luxury Lodging is deploying Passkey at seven of its properties across the United States, to provide each group with a dedicated website, for event attendees to make hotel reservations and for meeting planners to enter rooming lists. In both cases the reservations will flow directly into MTM’s PAR Springer-Miller Host property management system. (,

Back to Top…


  • Orange Lake Resorts picks Carnus’ Forecaster & AI Scheduler
  • Las Vegas Sands extends Venetian’s MICROS 9700 HMS to include Palazzo Las Vegas
  • Danubius Hotels picks MICROS 9700 HMS and OPERA Central Systems for its 56 hotels
  • MICROS expands integration between Payment Gateway and Planet Payment in Asia-Pacific
  • Squirrel releases Loyalty and Delivery modules for SquirrelOne POS
  • Malmaison and Hotel du Vin Hotels to roll out Xn Hotels’ dotPOS Enterprise
  • Eiffel Tower Restaurant in Paris Las Vegas implements ReServe Interactive

Orange Lake Resorts has picked Carnus’ Forecaster & AI Scheduler to automate their F&B forecasting and scheduling process. The Orlando timeshare property includes 2,300-units, 7 restaurants and 4 golf courses. (,
Las Vegas Sands has selected MICROS 9700 Hospitality Management System (HMS) for its new Palazzo Las Vegas resort, hotel, and casino adjacent to The Venetian property. The Palazzo went live in January 2008 with 110 MICROS Workstation 4 LX terminals added to The Venetian’s existing system, resulting in a single 275 terminal point-of-sale (POS) system spanning both properties.
Hungary-based Danubius Hotels Nyrt. has selected MICROS 9700 Hospitality Management System (HMS) and OPERA Central Systems solutions for all of its 56 hotels. Deployment will begin with 38 hotels in Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and the UK, followed by Romania, and is scheduled between September 2008 and November 2009. (,
MICROS Financial Services, a division of MICROS-Fidelio Asia-Pacific, has expanded is partnership with Planet Payment to provide integrated payment services to MICROS POS users. MICROS developed direct integration between its MICROS Payment Gateway and Planet Payment’s processing platform to facilitate the delivery of credit card transactions to a broader pool of Planet Payment-supported acquiring banks and processors, and has modified its POS software to support Planet’s multi-currency processing “Pay in Your Currency” and “FX Assured” options.
Squirrel Systems has released Loyalty and Delivery modules as part of its suite of Customer Relationship Management tools, integrated with the SquirrelOne POS system. The Loyalty module allows restaurateurs to track guest activity including frequency, spend information, special occasions, preferences, etc. Restaurant managers can access the information in real-time at a new back office dashboard and via several reports. The POS system identifies loyalty guests on reservation and waitlist records and on the integrated floor plan to alert servers, who have access to the guests’ preference information. The Delivery module manages take-out and delivery activities with the integration of Microsoft MapPoint to improve speed of service and driver efficiency. It also tracks guest delivery and preference information for easy retrieval and re-order. (
Malmaison and Hotel du Vin Hotels have completed a pilot implementation of Xn Hotels’ dotPOS Enterprise at four UK properties (Malmaison Reading, Hotel du Vin Cheltenham, Hotel du Vin Cambridge and Hotel du Vin York) and has begun a rollout to 11 further properties. The implementation includes centralized management and reporting, an interface to Micros’ Opera v3 PMS and 2-way integration with Fourth Hospitality’s FnB Shop stock application. (,
The Eiffel Tower Restaurant in the Paris Las Vegas hotel has implemented ReServe Interactive’s web-based Catering and Event Management system. (,

Back to Top…


  • Acentic announces next generation of navigation technology for hotel in-room entertainment
  • cStar Technologies integrates Vending Genie unit with Fastcorp’s Z-400 Robotic Frozen Vendors
  • TTI Technologies’ ConciergeOnDemand now used by 100 hotels in greater New York area
  • iBAHN launches digital convergence services in Asia-Pacific
  • FoneKey appoints Pop-A-Lock as implementation partner for installation/ maintenance
  • NewspaperDirect launches Hotel with facsimiles of 550+ newspapers and magazines
  • Hilton Phoenix East/Mesa upgrades wired and wireless Roomlinx HSIA
  • NxTV signs film and television VOD content licensing agreement with NBC Universal

Digital interactive TV vendor Acentic announced its development of a next generation of navigation technology for hotel in-room entertainment, developed in user testing with the Fraunhofer Institute for Applied Information Technology. The Acentic platform integrates external sources of information and entertainment to make the in-room television screen a media hub. Acentic’s GUI is open to external content to make use of the extensive content available on the Internet, and makes increased use of animation and video content within the hotel information pages. Graphical elements onscreen assist navigation; a key aspect is the removal of numeric keys in the UI so that the guest does not have to switch between arrows and numbers on the remote. (
cStar Technologies has integrated its Vending Genie cashless vending unit with Fastcorp’s Z-400 Robotic Frozen Vendors to provide cashless vending for the hospitality market. A swipe of the room key card or RFID wristband allows guest to purchase items from any unit; purchases are wirelessly approved and posted to the guest’s folio for payment at checkout or to the guest’s prepaid account. (,
TTI Technologies International announced that its ConciergeOnDemand service is now used by 100 hotels in the greater New York area. The system allows guests to view and book tours, buy show tickets via Ticketmaster and Telecharge, book transportation, etc. directly from a lobby kiosk or PC workstation; vouchers are printed immediately from the terminal. (
iBAHN has launched its digital convergence services in the Asia-Pacific region, with Sydney-based Eight Hotels Group already running its ETVi product in The Diamant Hotel. The services in place or on order include IP-TV (Internet-based television), video-on-demand (VoD), automated guest check-in, call center/guest services centers, music on demand, and iBAHN’s first digital signage product for the Asian market. (
FoneKey has appointed Pop-A-Lock as its implementation partner for installing and maintaining FoneKey’s cell-phone activated door lock technology in the United States. (,
NewspaperDirect has launched Hotel to provide digital facsimiles of over 550 newspapers and magazines from 72 countries and in 37 languages to hotel guests’ laptops. Hotel is currently deployed as the digital newspaper component of Swisscom Hospitality Service’s Room 2.0 Internet service, and is available in over 1,100 properties throughout Europe. (,
The 260-room Hilton Phoenix East/Mesa has upgraded its wired and wireless Roomlinx High-Speed Internet Access service. Wireless connectivity is available throughout the hotel, including the pool area, restaurant, lobby and all guestrooms. The meeting rooms and guest suites also have wired access. (,
NxTV has signed a film and television VOD content licensing agreement with NBC Universal, including the ability to offer new release movies from Universal Pictures in HD, episodes from current primetime television shows and access to NBCU’s library of archived films. (

Back to Top…


  • Agilysys acquires Eatec

Agilysys has acquired Eatec Corp., and will add its EatecNetX inventory and procurement management system to its product range. EatecNetX will also be interfaced with Agilysys’ point-of-sale offerings to create a complete end-to-end solution. (,

Back to Top…


  • Mintek Mobile Data Solutions installs WinTrack PM system in three new hotels
  • Marriott ranks #10 of Computerworld magazine’s “Top 12 Green IT Companies”

Mintek Mobile Data Solutions has installed its WinTrack PM system in three new hotels: the 488-room Radisson Valley Forge in Valley Forge, Pa., the 238-rooom Battle House in Mobile, Ala., and the 682-room Amway Grand Plaza Hotel in Grand Rapids, Mich. The latter property has 42 meeting and reception areas, seven food-and-beverage outlets and is attached to the DeVos Place Convention Center. (
Marriott International was ranked #10 on Computerworld magazine’s first “Top 12 Green IT Companies” list. Among the actions cited in the award are:
– Virtualization software from vendors such as VMware has reduced its server population by more than one-third over the past three years.
– Storage virtualization and archiving technologies have cut storage energy costs by more than 50% over that same period.
– Five of the 10 rooftop air-handling units above the company’s data center were replaced with the highest-rated units available (a SEER, or Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio, of 13).
– Construction of a second data center 300 feet below ground in a former Pennsylvania mine with an ambient air temperature of 53 degrees Fahrenheit. The facility (owned by Iron Mountain) is expected to be complete by year’s end.
– Replacement of over 5,000 desktop PCs with thin clients, cutting power consumption per device by 50%.
– Replacement of 38 public printers at its headquarters with more efficient Energy Star devices, helping reduce its carbon footprint by 36 tons annually.

Back to Top…


  • Vantage Hospitality Group designates Inn-Phone a preferred guestroom telephone
  • Bittel USA named a Preferred Vendor for Best Western hotel chain in first year in USA

Vantage Hospitality Group has designated Inn-Phone as a preferred guest room telephone vendor for its Americas Best Value Inn and The Lexington Collection branded properties. (,
Bittel USA has been named a Preferred Vendor for the Best Western hotel chain in its first year of business in the United States. Bittel’s phones include features such as Never-Off, a busy dial tone disconnect and reset feature that disconnects the line from an accidental off-hook condition and, after a time delay, resets the phone to accept incoming calls, Safe-Redial, which provides convenient last number redial storage with automatic number deletion after a configured time delay, and the No-Hook Hook Switch, which features no mechanical components and enhances the maintenance free aspects of the unit. (

Back to Top…


  • ResortQuest to install Kaba Ilco’s Oracode keyless access system in managed properties

ResortQuest will install Kaba Ilco’s Oracode keyless access system in its managed properties. ResortQuest has used the Oracode lock for several years in various locations; the agreement provides for additional Oracode locks to be installed in vacation rental units managed by ResortQuest throughout North America. Oracode is a pushbutton lock that uses time-sensitive PIN-based credentials issued remotely using web-based software. The system permits the generation of time sensitive codes via the Internet months or even years in advance. (,

Back to Top…

  • Search all current and archived News and Articles here:

  • Jon Inge & Associates
    9301 236th Street SW
    Edmonds, WA 98020

    office: 206-546-0966
    fax: 206-337-1355
    cell: 206-355-3111