INNOVATIONS IN HOTEL PRODUCTS AND SERVICES
The recently opened $300-million Rosen Shingle Creek mega-resort in Orlando reflects owner Harris Rosen's vision of old Florida grand hotels. The 1,500-room convention hotel with its Spanish Revival towers rises majestically above 230 acres of expansive Florida landscape and a well-groomed golf course.
An important component in the resort's overall design scheme was a cohesive, image-enhancing career apparel package for the hotel's employees. Management, with input from the project's interior designer, looked to create a professional, country club presentation, in keeping with the resort's casually elegant atmosphere.
Hotel management turned to the experts at Superior Uniform Group to produce and deliver the look.
The job wasn't without its challenges. The opening date was moved up a month, and the number of orders increased dramatically as more employees than originally projected were hired.
“Superior created a clean, crisp, professional look — across the board — from the front desk staff to banquet service and housekeeping,” says Jason Parsons, resident manager at Rosen Shingle Creek. “It was important to us that they create a synergy among all the departments.” Parsons was particularly pleased with the attention the vendor devoted to the project. For example, “Superior created a fashion show for us with different looks for each area to choose from,” says Parsons. “They didn't just present, say, two options, but a dozen looks.”
Several pieces were custom-designed, with the balance chosen from a comprehensive stock selection. Custom orders were specified for a banquet server coat, valet shirt, bartender shirt, restaurant apron and front desk tie. The front desk look is “powerful and professional, yet in keeping with the resort feel,” says Parsons, comprising a royal blue shirt, tan pants or skirt and yellow tie. The foodservice uniforms complement each outlet's colors, primarily earth tones and royal blue, with red and orange accents.
Logos are featured on everything, and “Superior did some great logo work, especially in the coffee shop,” notes Parsons. A handsome brown uniform is topped with a long apron and a large emblem for Smooth Java, the name of the outlet.
Florida's sultry climate demands performance wear for outdoor employees. For example, the pool area workers were outfitted with smart looking khaki shorts and a waffle weave T-shirt with moisture management qualities. And hard-working housekeepers appreciate the stretchy, comfortable uniforms they've been provided, adds Parsons. Circle 110
E.coli and Samonella bacteria cause food poisoning. Dial Complete Antimicrobial Foaming Hand Soap for foodservice workers contains a patented Activated Triclosan Technology that is said to be 25 times more effective at killing germs than other AB soaps, yet is more than 25 percent milder. Plus, Dial Complete is E-2 rated and helps eliminate food odors from hands. Circle 111
The Clarity Designer Line of moist towelettes from Nanofilm was developed to care for delicate optics. Guests simply wipe away smears, smudges, dirt and fingerprints. There's no streaking, haze or residue. And they're safe for all optics and coatings. Sixteen packaging looks are available and custom packaging is offered. Circle 112
P&G Pro Line Lodging, a division of Procter & Gamble Professional, offers a line of stain removal products for hotels, as part of the P&G On-Premise Laundry Program. The three products include Tide Multi Purpose Stain Remover, Tide Rust Spot Remover and Tide Stain Removal Treatment. The stain removers have been formulated to tackle tough stains housekeepers experience on a daily basis. Circle 113
PhoneSuite, a division of Call Management Products, offers a hospitality phone system that is ideal for motels and limited-service hotels up to 220 rooms. PhoneSuite is said to meet or exceed all franchise requirements by offering features such as answer detection, T1 digital trunk support, wake-up calls, PMS interfaces, call accounting, voice mail and more. Circle 114
WHITEFACE LODGE GUESTS STAY TRIM
Olivier Bottois concedes he's no “fitness guru,” but he recognizes quality when he sees it. That befits the chief operating officer of the Whiteface Lodge, an 85-suite luxury hotel on 30 acres in Lake Placid, NY. The Leading Hotels of the World facility boasts a large fitness center featuring True Fitness equipment, which Bottois says is working very well indeed.
“It is working extremely well for us, with no breakdowns, no issues, no complaints,” Bottois says of the multifunctional True Fitness elliptical machines, treadmills and stationary bike. “People love it, they're impressed. Our gym is better equipped, with higher-quality equipment, than most free-standing gyms.”
The fitness center is open from 6:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. Directions on equipment use are posted and trainers are available upon request. Three of the walls are lined with mirrors, music is playing, and there is fresh fruit available.
Bottois himself uses the treadmills and the stationary bike, “brand-new models, very nice,” he says. “I previously belonged to a gym in town that has very nice equipment, but these are just beautiful and top-of-the-line.”
Each treadmill has its own TV and there's one next to the stationary bike. Whiteface has been using True Fitness equipment for 14 months and it still looks new.
“That was the intent when we purchased it,” Bottois says. “We wanted to make sure we had the best of the best. That's what the resort is all about.” Circle 115
Cold Water Wash
The proprietary technology of NuTek International Inc.'s Ozone Laundry Support System allows hoteliers to process all linen in cold ozonated water. The OLSS is a stand-alone, wall-mounted system that combines a fail-safe delivery system. The design will save the average limited-service property about $850 per month in energy and water costs and a full-service hotel will save in excess of $3,000 per month, claims the company. Circle 116
ATM Systems provides custom ATM solutions to world-class hotels. Its clients include Host Marriott, Ritz- Carlton, Four Seasons, Starwood Hotels & Resorts and more. Circle 117
D&D Technologies' Magna-Latch is a pool and child safety gate latch that's magnetic, self-latching and won't rust, corrode or jam. Magna-Latch meets pool barrier codes and has been tested to 400,000 open/ close cycles. It is easy to install, says the company, and can be adjusted horizontally or vertically. Circle 118
Superior Uniform's Wool-Luxe collection includes updated classic ensembles presented in a stylish navy pinstripe that incorporates subtle striping in light blue and silver. The garments' timeless and luxurious wool-rich fabric has a retail hand and finish consistent with those seen in high-end fabrics, says the company. Circle 119
Human Resources Textbook
The revised fourth edition of Managing Hospitality Resources, published by the Educational Institute of the AH&LA, provides readers with the latest information about the many facets of hospitality human resources. It features information about the requirements of U.S. employment and workplace laws and strategies for attracting employees, minimizing turnover and maximizing productivity. Circle 120
AVENDRA TURNS FIVE
In 2001, Avendra was just an idea. Five hospitality companies — ClubCorp, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, Hyatt Hotels Corporation, InterContinental Hotels Group and Marriott International — formed an entity to provide innovative procurement for the hospitality industry.
“The idea was unique and untested,” says Dennis Baker, president and CEO of Avendra. “There was initial resistance and skepticism from many in the lodging business. Mostly, they were worried they would lose control of their procurement operations. But instead, after better understanding and experiencing the services and systems we offer, today they actually have more control.” But applying the Avendra strategy was not without its challenges. The lodging supply chain is highly fragmented with thousands of unique hotel properties ordering daily from an enormous number of suppliers. To be successful, Avendra had to deliver product offerings and purchasing programs that provided customers enough variety and flexibility to meet their diverse needs while still achieving the benefits of aggregation.
In the five years since its founding, not only has Avendra validated the idea of leveraged procurement and supply chain services in the hospitality industry, it also has grown to more than 4,500 customer locations, including hotels, golf clubs, airports, restaurants, casinos and cruise ships. Avendra's value proposition is simple: Customers gain substantial savings and efficiencies by accessing contracts leveraging more than $2 billion in annual purchases combined with end-to-end, supply chain management solutions.
Since its inception, the company created a field support organization, enhanced its customer service call center, expanded its dedicated account management group, developed a new series of tools to allow customers to monitor and analyze their purchasing behavior, initiated a new services group that offers operational and best practices consulting, and enhanced price audit processes to assure price accuracy.
“We had a vision to provide cost savings and better supply chain management to the lodging industry,” says Baker. “We proved the idea does work, almost doubling our size since launch five years ago. But, what I am most proud of is the way we continue to evolve. From new product and service offerings to meet changing business demands to enhanced spend reporting and price auditing, it was listening to our customers that has made us the success we are today. Circle 121
The Sereno Single-Handle Faucet is the latest offering in Symmons' Elements line of bathroom faucets. In addition to its minimalist look, the unit features ceramic control components, aerator, single-hole mount and metal construction. It is available in polished chrome, satin nickel or polished brass finishes.
RCA introduces a 42-inch plasma HDTV commercial monitor-receiver the company says provides exceptional picture and sound quality for in-room viewing. Features include 1024 × 768 resolution, 1200 cd/m brightness, a 1000:1 contrast ratio and MTS sound with eight watts per channel in two front speakers. Operator-friendly features include a one-button access channel guide and eight-character channel labeling. Circle 123
Classic Coffee Concepts introduces a new one-cup in-room coffee program. The program eliminates the need for cleaning or replacing glass decanters by brewing the coffee directly into an insulated disposable 12-oz. cup. A heavy-duty, dishwasher-safe brew basket is provided.
Smartcube, a new product from Minibar Systems, is designed to give hoteliers maximum flexibility in all areas of minibar operations. There's a choice of three cooling systems, glass door designs with sensors for products, unlimited product choices and the ability to upgrade the technology and modify the configuration and look at any time. The Smartcube software (S3) is Windows-driven and designed to operate on a hotels' network.
Prodigy, from Scotsman Ice Systems, features a state-of-the-art self-monitoring system that provides up-to-the-minute reporting on the machine's performance, as well as maintenance needs. It visually indicates when it's making ice, as well as when it's due for critical maintenance procedures. Circle 126
Meyda Lighting, a Meyda Tiffany Company, offers the Westport Collection, featuring a sophisticated, graceful design integrating dark bronze leaf fabric shades, accented with Onyx beaded fringe, on handsome metal frames. The grouping includes multi-arm chandeliers, as well as a floor lamp, table lamps and wall sconces. Circle 127
Card Scanning Solutions (CSSN) introduces the Scanshell 3000 Duplex Scanner. The A4 duplex scanner has the ability to simultaneously capture full images of both sides of ID cards, allowing the customer to extract printed data on the front of the card through CSSN's OCR software, while comparing the text data with the encoded barcode on the back, processed using CSSN's barcode imaging library. The Scanshell 3000 also can scan and OCR full-page A4-sized documents, allowing for the use of SDK for OCR and imaging processing to create editable digital copies of forms the customer may need. Circle 128
Terry Towel Technology
Standard Textile now offers terry products with its Centium Core Technology, which is said to make towels feel thicker and more luxurious and last longer than regular towels. The technology replaces the traditional cotton weft of the towel with a Centium microfilament polymeric yarn that imparts higher strength and tenacity. The core yarn never touches the skin but imparts strength while making the towel more absorbent and durable. Circle 129
Richloom Fabrics Group has launched R Bed, its first collection of finished hospitality bedding ensembles. Beds can be customized to designer and hotel specifications. The first R Bed collection consists of 10 ensembles incorporating pintucking, pleating, embroidery and jacquards. Circle 130
Parking Token Designs
A new parking token design from TokensDirect can be ordered as standard tokens or customized with a company's name, logo or other marketing messages. Tokens can be redeemed for free parking, used for self-serve parking structures or for valet parking. Circle 131
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