An Elegant Shower Solution

When Mandarin Oriental Hotels decided to open an exclusive address in New York City, its vision called for an exceptionally luxurious guest experience — right down to the tubs, showers and sinks. Naturally, the bathroom fittings had to convey a sense of opulence, while reliably delivering the fine performance the hotel's wealthy clientele would demand.

Designers and engineers at Symmons Signature Design Studio worked closely with Ron Wackrow, executive vice president of the Related Lodging Group/Mandarin Oriental New York, and Project Manager Michael Antoinik in its design and development facility to craft an elegant and unique suite of bathroom fittings. Within a month, handsprays, valves, showerheads and diverters — all custom-designed and custom-manufactured — were refined, tested and perfected.

Wackrow recalls: “If you'd ever told me that I would be using a Symmons valve on my $800-a-night Mandarin Oriental Hotel, I'd have thought you were crazy.“

The hotel's 277 elegant guestrooms and suites feature two separate shower experiences. One is a ceiling-mounted drench showerhead and pulsating handspray; the other is a spa with a Roman tub filler and deck-mounted handspray. All are outfitted with the beautiful and exclusive Mandarin Oriental fittings designed and built by Signature Design Studio.

Says Symmons Corporate Sales Manager John Joyce, “This was a very exciting project. Working with Ron, Director of Engineering John Couture and his team was a wonderful experience. We were able to learn a lot from each other and to create something that never existed before.“ Circle 150

Laundry Room Tables

Midwest Folding Products' laundry room tabletops are constructed of solid, 5/8-inch-thick, 47-lb. industrial grade particleboard, surfaced with high-pressure plastic laminate and backed with a phenolic sheet to prevent moisture penetration. Tops are edged with vinyl T-molding and secured with staples from the underside of the tabletop. Circle 151

Occupancy Sensors

Watt Stopper/Legrand has unveiled a new family of occupancy sensors featuring 360-degree coverage, advanced detection technology and a low-profile design. Available in both line and low voltage models, the UT-300, CI-300 and DT-300 series mount on ceilings, offering a flat, unobtrusive appearance. The UT-300 features ultrasonic sensing technology, while the CI-300 employs passive infrared (PIR) technology for occupancy detection. The DT-300 relies on both ultrasonic and PIR sensing technologies. Circle 152

Hair Dryer

The engineers at Andis claim to have tamed the frizzies with the Ionic Retract-A-Cord hair dryer. The ionic technology is said to dry hair faster by breaking up water molecules and producing shiny, healthy hair, minus the frizzies. The hair dryer features a retractable cord that tucks into the folding handle for easy storage. Circle 153

Steel Toe Footwear

The new Steel Toe Hornet from Shoes for Crews is lightweight and rugged. Shoes feature breathable knit and leather uppers, speed laces and padded ankle support. Maximum slip and fall protection is standard. Circle 154

Hyatt Housekeepers Are Tops

A team of housekeepers from the Hyatt Lodge in Oak Brook, IL took top honors at the third annual Sealy Bednastics held recently as part of the Illinois Hotel & Lodging Association's 2005 Hospitality Games.

The Hyatt crew set an all-time event record and earned the gold medal for making and stripping a bed twice in just over two and a half minutes. Team members Concepcion Villa, Madelaloz Barrios, Rosa Aguilar and Edoniges Martinez each received a Sealy queen-size sleep set for their accomplishment.

More than 1,000 members of the Illinois hospitality industry attended the Hospitality Games, which were held in early February at the Hilton Chicago. Other competitions at the Games included Bell Cart Wheelie (an obstacle course for bell staff), Red, Table, Set, Go! (a banquet table setting and clearing race) and Some Assembly Required (a maintenance and engineering skills test.)

Bednastics sponsor Sealy got further exposure in March when NBC Today Show Travel Editor Peter Greenberg did a segment on the hotel bed wars. On the program, Greenberg reviewed and featured beds from the Ritz-Carlton and Four Seasons, both of which are Sealy Posturepedic sleep systems.

Sealy produces a number of custom-branded bedding sets for both chains and independents. Circle 155

Remote Control Minibar

Bartech uses wireless technology to streamline engineering and housekeeping functions as well as minibar operations. With its Refill Remote Control minibar, attendants simply unlock one minibar at a time from within the guestroom. Control is maintained and shrinkage eliminated. Using Bartech's PDA system when refilling minibars streamlines the servicing of rooms, yielding even better control and cost efficiency. Circle 156

Diversity Video

Diversity WORKS, a new video from the Educational Institute of the American Hotel & Lodging Association, defines diversity and explains why it's critical for growing business and reducing turnover. Viewers learn how to make diversity initiatives succeed and how to sustain an ideal diverse work environment. A print companion guide offers discussion questions, activities and testimonials to use as part of diversity training and education. Circle 157

Hard Floor Care System

The Commercial Care Division of 3M introduces three hard floor care systems leveraging 3M technology that collectively create the new 3M Easy Clean System. The system provides solutions to needs in the areas of floor dusting, wet mopping and disinfecting, as well as floor finish application: the 3M Easy Trap Duster System, Easy Scrub Flat Mop System and Easy Shine Applicator System. Circle 158

Serving Bowls

The Vollrath Company has expanded its line of double wall serving bowls. The 18-8 stainless steel serving bowls now include 23 models available in a variety of styles: oval, conical, angled beehive, round beehive, round angled and trumpet shape. The double wall construction provides insulation that maintains proper food temperature, hot or cold. Circle 159

Carpet Care

Pioneer Eclipse introduces additions to the EnviroStar Green line of environmentally friendly products. The EnviroStar Green Carpet Care line includes Extractor & PreSpray Cleaner, Extraction Rinse, Soil Release Bonnet Buff and All Purpose Spotter. Circle 160

Digital Entertainment

NXTV provides digital broadband entertainment and Internet services to the hotel industry and is a licensor of advanced IP-based broadband solutions to a variety of industries. The NXTV system features high-definition digital movies and previews on demand, high-speed Internet access via TV or laptop, video games, digital satellite TV, state-of-the-art VOIP and a branded portal to access the features. Circle 161

Wall Maps

Rand McNally introduces a new self-service mapping tool at, which allows hospitality businesses nationwide to quickly create large, high-quality, affordable, customized wall maps to suit their distinct business needs. The patent-pending Custom View Wall Maps system provides an easy-to-use mapping tool that guides users with simple step-by-step instructions. Users can prepare a customized map of a specific area, such as a neighborhood or property location, anywhere within the contiguous United States. Circle 162

Display System

Swingframe Mfg., manufacturer of a quick-change, swing-open frame and display system, now offers a 1-3/16-inch-wide natural wood profile that comes in 10 stain luster finishes, including natural clear, cherry, dark mahogany, honey pecan, dark green and more. Wood Poster Swingframes hold posters, graphics, photos and other printed announcements. Circle 163

Omelet Sandwiches

Kangaroo Brands, Inc. introduces Kangaroo Omelet Sandwiches, portable omelet sandwiches for a fast heat n' serve breakfast. Each sandwich is individually wrapped and contains a fully cooked omelet nested inside a no-fat, low-calorie Kangaroo pita pocket. Consumers microwave a frozen sandwich for one minute, or 30 seconds if refrigerated. Varieties include Cheddar Cheese Omelet Sandwich and Sante Fe Omelet Sandwich. Circle 164


Goodman Company introduces an Amana brand Package Terminal Air Conditioner (PTAC) with energy efficiency ratios (EER) up to 12.8 that it says saves energy, has cooler operating temperatures and is less costly to operate than conventional units, all in a standard-size package. The heart of the new unit is Bent Coil Technology, which increases the primary and secondary air surface on the coils while keeping the PTAC within standard industry size and shape limitations. Circle 165

Ad Panel Receptacle

United Receptacle has added a new three-sided ad panel receptacle to the Classics by Howard Products line. This new receptacle has three large, changeable message windows that can be used to generate revenue by selling the ad space to advertisers. Or, ad panels can be used to prominently display one's own ad or corporate logo. Circle 166

Fitness Entertainment

Life Fitness offers a line of LCD entertainment options for new or already-in-use cardio equipment, ideal for hotel fitness facilities that want to provide guests with cardiovascular machines equipped with personal entertainment. New offerings include an enhanced integrated LCD screen solution that's standard on e-model cardio products and attachable LCD screen solutions for select equipment. Circle 167

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