Friday, June 9, 2017

Should hotels and accommodation providers get together to create their own booking portal?

Like Room Key? It’s been done already, and it’s a failure.

Image result for roomkey


Room Key was launched by a consortium of hotel chains who wanted to light off a collective response to, and re-capture guest referrals from, online travel agencies like Expedia and Travelocity.

Only one teeny-weeny problem: the OTAs were already filling the demand for hotel room bookings via online travel agencies. Customers wanted to compare rates, and hotel features, at their destination side by side, and the online travel agencies were enabling that, and had first mover advantage, and the customers didn’t need Room Key in order to do it.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Hotel for sale: Motel 6, Greensboro, N. C.

Image result for motel 6 greensboro nc

Property offering

MOTEL 6 (former Landmark Inn)
2838 SOUTH ELM-EUGENE STREET
GREENSBORO, N. C.  27406

Listing broker: Vinit Mody, MTEL Consultants, via Loopnet

TripAdvisor reviews: Bubble score 1.5


Property website:

The facility:

This property (formerly the LandMark Inn) has had some renovations, was recently accepted as a Motel 6 franchise, has glaring security problems (not the least of which was three homicides in a two month period some years back), and still has a long way to go. But its location can be its salvation if it is upbranded to a mid-market product, a complete renovation occurs, some product differentiation is implemented to go along with that, and some corporate marketing is implemented. Also, quite a bit of acreage is included.

It's a voodoo hellhole, but you should buy it anyway.




Asking price$2,100,000.00Given
Number of rooms61Given
Annual gross$654,457.41Calculated
Occupancy71.00%Given (see note)
ADR$41.40Given
REVPAR$29.39Calculated
Room revenue multiplier3.21Calculated
Year built1967Given
Last renovated2016Given
Last sold2005Guilford County GIS
Lot size11.88 acresGuilford County GIS

Occupancy and REVPAR are based on the current inventory of 61 rooms. There are three guestroom buildings, each having 32 rooms (one seems to have three room bays knocked out for an apartment), for a total of 96 rooms. Let's try it again with the actual number of rooms:


Asking price$2,100,000.00Given
Number of rooms96Given
Annual gross$654,457.41Calculated
Occupancy43.31%Given (see note)
ADR$41.40Given
REVPAR$18.68Calculated
Room revenue multiplier3.21Calculated
Year built1967Given
Last renovated2016Given
Last sold2005Guilford County GIS
Lot size11.88 acresGuilford County GIS

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Seth's Blog : Merely transactional

From Seth's Blog

Merely transactional


"We owe you nothing."

This week, all but one NFL owner voted to let the Raiders leave Oakland for Las Vegas (I'm not a football fan, but bear with me).

A nearly perfect example of how one version of capitalism corrupts our culture.

The season ticket holder bought a ticket and got his games. Even steven. We owe you nothing.

The dedicated fan sat through endless losing games. Even steven. Ticket purchased, game delivered. We owe you nothing.

The problem with 'even steven' is that it turns trust and connection and emotions into nothing but a number. Revenue on a P&L. It ignores the long-term in exchange for a relentless focus on today. Only today.

There's an alternative view of capitalism. Modern capitalism. Capitalism for the long-term. In this view, the purpose of an enterprise is to make things better. To minimize negative externalities and create value. Value for the owners, sure, but also for the workers, the customers and the bystanders.

"We owe you everything."

You trusted us. You showed up. You tolerated our impact on your world, even when you didn't invite us in.

It'll never be even steven, but we can try to repay you. Thank you for the opportunity.

I think this is what sports fans signed up for when they were first offered the chance to support a team. Maybe your customers feel the same way.


Garbage out, garbage in


Image

Observations

We've seen this before: Most people are overconfident in their ability to get accurate assessments based on a job interview.

People whose accountabilities include interviewing and hiring need to stick to a structured interview. 

People whose accountabilities include interviewing and hiring need to be trained to first determine needs and objectives, then conduct an interview and accurately note responses that are in alignment with those needs and objectives.

This isn't just a Starbucks disease

Many hotels are bad about it, too.

Business Insider article: Starbucks is quietly changing the business as furious baristas slam the 'cult that pays $9 per hour'

starbucks barista


Observations:

We've seen this before: Management wants to micromanage the customer experience and leans too heavily upon 'service' and connection (which you can't force). Some even attempt to use it to cover inadequacies in the operation or facility itself. It makes any employee exposed to culpability for anything, and makes for a very unhealthy work environment.

No matter what the 'benefits' are, their value will show up as nebulous if you're not paying a living wage.


Monday, May 22, 2017

What is and why do hotels have a rack rate?

Sometimes, with all these 'entitlement' discounts, I wonder myself . . .

First of all, rack rate is not - at least not in the US - set by law. If some hotel clerk told you that, he or she either didn't like you, or just didn't want to give you any kind of discount. Every hotel sets its own rates - and its own exceptions to and discounts from those rates.

(Some localities require the hotel to post their rates, like on the inside of the door to your room, usually a scheme to thwart price gouging, or fraud by clerks. Where there is such a requirement, you'll see an astronomically high rate posted, in anticipation of the expected rate for the most high-demand special event in the area . . .)

Rack rate is the asking price for a room, the set price from which nearly all discounts are calculated.

How much? Well, certainly I want to cover my costs, make a profit, etc. - but it is strictly market driven. (Consider Hampton Inns, or Courtyard by Marriott. A room at a Hampton Inn, or a Courtyard, is going to come pretty much one way. But a king room at a Hampton Inn in one city can be priced very differently from a similar king room at a Hampton Inn in another, depending upon the local market. The same goes for Courtyard, and any chain that emphasizes product consistency and uniformity.) I'm going to set it at an amount comparable hotels are asking for comparable rooms. Set it lower, and I'm charging less than the guest might be willing to pay; set it higher, and unless my property has amenities and features for which the guest considers worth paying a little more, I'm going to lose business to the competing hotels.


And now, the discounts . . . You can pretty much figure that everyone who walks in the door has some rationale why he or she should receive a 10% discount from the rack rate.

Motorcoach service facilities

Image result for coach maintenance facilities

We like to have installed, in every town where we operate a hotel, facilities for servicing motorcoaches. I learned some years ago that the availability of these is of great value for pursuing and successfully booking bus tour business.

These would include a prefab outbuilding to store your necessary tools and supplies, located to a fresh water connection and a lavatory dump.


We don't want to use the lav dump as a commercial RV dump. (And the design will differ from the one shown above -- which is designed for RVs, not motorcoaches specifically -- to not encourage such inquiries.) Heavy use would generate a mess and odor problem.

But motorcoach tour operators that I've dealt with in the past are particularly appreciative of an amenity such as this. They don't pursue discounts very aggressively -- they just pass the costs of the rooms to the tour customers, anyway -- but they like being able to have the coach serviced; and with Trailways no longer in business in most parts of the country, there aren't that many places to get it done any more.

Image result for bus tour group hotel


We have a maintenance guy there when a coach is scheduled to arrive to help unload the coach, we have the driver park the coach over the lav dump, we dump the lav and hose down the area around the dump spot; we swab out the lav, refill it and dump in some de-germ, we sweep and mop the coach and get the interior looking nice and fresh, and we wash the coach. Total time, one guy, a little over an hour, maybe two hours if you want to give it a really good job. (And we do. As you can guess, I worked for Trailways years ago, when there was a Trailways...).

Related image

Small price to pay for being able to rent an extra 25-50 rooms in a night, even if we have to give a free room to the driver.