INNOVATIONS IN HOTEL PRODUCTS AND SERVICES

Tecton Sets Water Club On Course

In May 2002, Condé Nast Traveler named The Water Club in San Juan, Puerto Rico as one of the world's most dynamic places to stay.

Owner Joaquin Bolivar II and his team created a boutique property that was beautifully designed, ideally located and with great revenue-generating potential.

Unfortunately, the property wasn't profitable. In August 2002, Bolivar looked to hotel management veterans Tecton Hospitality to turn things around. The company provides management services and solutions to owners and operators of hotel franchises and independent properties as well as specializing in the turnaround of under-performing hotels.

“The first steps we took were to establish baseline processes,” says J. Raul Leal, president of Tecton Hospitality. “We conducted thorough audits of The Water Club's direct sales, e-commerce outreach, marketing, accounting, human resources, customer service and all other operations. We identified key areas of improvement and quickly implemented new uniform standard operating procedures. We set target dates for compliance, set priorities and began to train all the staff in the systems.”

Tecton redirected the sales teams' focus to more strategic account selling and marketing the hotel in typically high-yield distribution channels such as the Internet. It completed an overhaul of the website and focused the sales effort on key account management solicitation to ensure The Water Club was visible to its target audiences and priced correctly to earn the business.

At the same time, Tecton made dramatic changes to the back-office operations by instituting financial controls and reports.

Within 90 days of Tecton's work with The Water Club, occupancy jumped from 50 percent to 85 percent. Today, occupancy typically averages in the low 90 percentages. At year-end 2003, The Water Club reported a 200-percent increase in net operating income, in addition to a 57-percent RevPAR index growth. Circle 80

Coffee Makers

Four-cup commercial coffee makers from Classic Coffee Concepts are said to provide hotter, faster and better coffee. Models CC40 (white) and CC43 (black) each provide one hour to shut-off, non-stick warming plate, pause & serve, a large pour-in water reservoir and more. The stylish black model CC43 model is now available with a stainless steel decanter as model CC43S. Circle 81

Ironing Station

Whirlpool's ImPress ironing station offers everything needed for ironing activities within easy reach. The lighted, built-in station holds all ironing equipment, including storage space for the iron as it cools. It's designed to swivel 360 degrees and adjust to several different heights. Circle 82

TV Guide Folder

A TV/entertainment guide bi-fold, in “sculptahyde” material, is available from Vynatex. An elastic retainer holds the entertainment booklet, and it's available in a variety of colors. The folded size is five-inches by eight inches. Circle 83

Bathroom Scales

Waring introduces three bathroom scales in its hospitality personal care line. The Conair Digital Glass Scale (model MS-8140) has a distinctive chrome frame surrounding a generous-sized platform scale made of tempered safety glass. The Conair Black Speed-ometer Scale (MS-9550) is a chrome scale with a black turbo mat. The Conair White Digital Scale (MS-100) features an electronic scale with a mirror lens as well as reflection Ultra-Bright LED. Circle 84

Air Wall Fabrics

Milliken & Company has launched a new fabric collection that it says opens up design options within the hospitality industry, enabling interior designers to convert air walls in hotel ballrooms from generic space division appliances to integral design elements of a ballroom's overall look and feel. DiVISIONS fabrics are plush knit velvets that feature patterns. Circle 85

Tissue Box Covers

The Wescon Lodging Supplies Division of Lancaster Colony Commercial Products introduces new Sussex Boutique and Flat Tissue Box Covers that offer operators the ability to use either style of facial tissue box to create a display that is both tasteful and functional. Boutique or Flat covers are available in white, cream, black, gray onyx, black onyx and marble onyx. Circle 86

Wine Program

Never sold at retail, Whispering Peak Vineyards is a wine company dedicated to the hotel industry. For 14 years, quality wines have consistently been created with complexity that connoisseurs enjoy, yet drink smoothly for the average guest, claims the company. Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are about $5 a bottle. Circle 87

Software Service

Marqui is a software service designed to help any size hotel or hotel chain streamline and increase the effectiveness of its internal, external and online mar- keting. Starting at $199 per month, Marqui's capabilities include content management, newsletter and brochure creation, e-mail distribution and information output to basically any format. Circle 88

Weather Forecasts

AccuWeather.com offers the Planner, which puts decision-making tools in the hotelier's hands with a complete two-week snapshot of the weather on one web page. Users can set their own weather alarms for specific conditions such as low temperatures or precipitation levels that may impact their occupancy, personnel schedules or special event bookings. Circle 89

Sensor Faucets

The new Tripoint technology from Kohler Co. is said to improve upon the standard of current commercial sensor faucets that use infrared sensors to provide highly accurate, dependable performance. It reduces false activation to a minimum because its sensors rely on distance as the primary trigger. The lavatory faucet also features a high-temperature limit stop for safety and a temperature adjustment lever on the side of the faucet. Circle 90

Ceramic Tile Alternative

Marlite introduces Symmetrix with Sani-Coat, a scored FRP panel coated with a sanitary sealer, recreating the look of a ceramic tile application while providing ease of cleaning and better durability characteristics. Symmetrix panels are available in a variety of colors and are grooved to resemble ceramic tile and grout lines. Circle 91

Branded Coffees

S&D Coffee, distributor of Barnie's Coffee & Tea Company branded coffees, introduces the Barnie's Café program. Centered on the redesigned packaging, the “Proud to Serve” program features everything one needs to bring premium branded Barnie's coffees to a lodging operation. Circle 92

Patterned Carpet

Contemporary Blocks, a new design from Durkan Patterned Carpet, features an interplay of blocks and checkered motifs in a variety of configurations, creating a distinct pattern. Outlines of flora are fused with the geometry in a style reminiscent of 20th century decorative arts as well as Matisse's magnificent paper cut outs. Circle 93

LED Lighting

LED-FLEX LED lighting from Mule Lighting, Inc. has the same appearance as traditional neon lighting, but requires less energy, is more flexible and durable and can be used in many applications where neon is not appropriate. The lights are durable UV-protected tubes lined with LED lamps for illumination. Circle 94

Folding Tables

Comfort Leg meeting room tables from Midwest Folding Products increase seating capacity and improve guest comfort. Because table legs don't interfere with chair spacing, more chairs can be set at the tables. Tables are available in steel-edged plywood top, decorative laminate plywood core top and light-weight ABS plastic top. Circle 95

Programmable Floor Warming

SunTouch offers a redesigned control that it says is more elegant. The Programmable FloorStat is easy to install and program due to the two-part control face and power base design. Available in 120vac and 240vac, the unit has three program settings: comfort, economy and vacation. Circle 96

Waste Receptacle

United Receptacle's weather urn features a top that conceals smokers' waste and keeps water out. The urn is constructed from fire-safe galvanized steel and is powder coated for durability. A piano hinge lid makes emptying easy. Circle 97

Italian Toiletries

Essential Amenities introduces the new line of Poggesi Italian toiletries, said to represent an experience in luxury and pampering. Clean, fresh fragrances are made from all-natural ingredients with the benefits of plant extracts. Circle 98

Quality Assurance Services

Avendra offers foodservice operators a variety of services that can help them address food safety issues. The procurement services company offers a supplier audit program, which proactively checks for proper food handling among its supplier base. In addition, through its newly formed Avendra Services Group, it has property-based services that help ensure safe food operations at individual units. Circle 99

Feature Phones

PhoneSuite, a division of Call Management Products, Inc., offers feature phone support with the PhoneSuite Model 112 hotel/motel telephone system (PBX). For administrative users, the phones are multi-button speaker phones providing TouchLite combined voice mail waiting light and access pushbutton, hold button, call release button, backlit LCD display and 11 custom keys that may be programmed with multiple functions. Circle 100

Ovens

Merry Chef uses accelerated cooking technology in its ovens. The 500 series comprises microwave-accelerated, high-speed convected hot air ovens, suitable for use in commercial kitchens, and fitted with Menu Key as standard on all models. Circle 101

Washer-Extractors

Milnor's new suspended washer-extractors are said to boost washroom production, save overtime costs and conserve floor space because fewer machines are needed. The X-series models increase productivity through larger cylinders that allow a higher finished wash quality than in other machines, claims the company. Load capacities range from 55 to 170 pounds. Circle 102

Magnets

BIC Magnets, available in a variety of shapes and sizes, are an alternative to door hangers by clearly communicating “Privacy Please.” From basic calendars to magnets listing a variety of local restaurant choices, BIC Magnets are also well suited as refrigerator magnets in suites and extended-stay locations.Circle 103

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