The Best Boutique Hotels In _______ / Are you getting tired of this heading?

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I use a google search that uses the term “Boutique Hotel” because I have been retained to complete some research in recent months for a number of clients for a range of reasons. The number of “news” articles that lead off with this heading seems to be growing at an incredible pace. In reality, most of them are essentially PR promos.

My question is this- what do you at your property to make it special? Unique? Memorable?

Feel free to contact me if you could use an independent, 3rd party resource.

Comments and suggestions for future articles are always welcome john@hoganhospitality.com 

 

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

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Click below for a fascinating look at one of the most successful of all American Hospitality businesses

Howard Johnson’s, Host of the Bygone Ways

For more than seven decades American roads were dotted with the familiar orange roof and blue cupola of the ubiquitous Howard Johnson’s restaurants and Motor Lodges.  The company’s founder and namesake was a grade school dropout who became a franchising pioneer and introduced the restaurant industry to centralized purchasing.  Johnson repeated his formula with motor lodges, creating one of the world’s largest hotel chains.

In 1965 Howard Johnson’s sales exceeded the combined sales of McDonald’s, Burger King, and Kentucky Fried Chicken.  By 1979 the “Host of the Highways” had become the largest hospitality company in America, with more than 1,000 restaurants and 500 motor lodges.  But the company saw a decline of its rule over the roadways in the 1970s after a series of events destroyed the company’s earnings.
cover photo courtesy Ben Schumin

 

https://sometimes-interesting.com/2017/10/06/howard-johnsons-host-of-the-bygone-ways/ 

 

Howard Johnson first became locally famous for his ice cream.  He claimed the secret recipe came from his mother, while other accounts suggests it came from William G. Hallbauer, a retiring German immigrant who had been selling ice cream from his horse and cart in the area at the turn of the century.  The ‘secret’ was to double the amount of normal butterfat, and to use only natural ingredients.  This created a premium ice cream that was an immediate sensation and earned Howard $60,000 in revenue from his first beachfront stand.

An image accompanying a 1948 newpaper article shows Howard Johnson's 28 flavors at the time.An image accompanying a 1948 newpaper article shows Howard Johnson’s 28 flavors at the time (source).

Additional flavors were added – 28 in all – as well as “frankforts,” a premium hot dog sandwich developed by Howard that was grilled in butter.  Johnson clipped the frankfurters at both ends and notched them lengthwise.  He used only the highest quality meats grilled in a creamy butter, and for buns he used lightly buttered and toasted fresh rolls.

By 1928 Howard Johnson was grossing $240,000 from his store and small network of beachfront ice cream and frankfort vendors.

[ Howard Johnson’s original 28 ice cream flavors:  Banana, Black Raspberry, Burgundy Cherry, Butter Pecan, Buttercrunch, Butterscotch, Caramel Fudge, Chocolate, Chocolate Chip, Coconut, Coffee, Frozen Pudding, Fruit Salad, Fudge Ripple, Lemon Stick, Macaroon, Maple Walnut, Mocha Chip, Orange-Pineapple, Peach, Peanut Brittle, Pecan Brittle, Peppermint Stick, Pineapple, Pistachio, Strawberry, Strawberry Ripple, Vanilla.

MORE DETAILS HERE
https://sometimes-interesting.com/2017/10/06/howard-johnsons-host-of-the-bygone-ways/ 

Howard D. Johnson personally ensured quality by testing every item before it went on the menu.

Howard-Deering-Johnson-press-photo-1962-age-65                  Howard Johnson's, "Landmark for Hungry Americans" ad

 

 

Comments and suggestions for future articles are always welcome john@hoganhospitality.com 

 

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

A focused look at the path to success – recommended reading

This book is a good logic forward and rocks and Dan Heath, coauthor of SWITCH, who uses examples of how Chris Rock perfected his comedy routines through months of , at times, painful performances.

The premise of the book is based on fact and experience of shared by many of us. There are references to youth, including practice of learning piano, a new language and sports. A reality for many of us remains from those focused efforts to study and practice along the way.

The authors use examples of legendary college coach John Wooden of UCLA and his almost fanatical commitment and the definition of success. He found success come from “old fashioned, well orchestrated, intentionally executed, carefully planned practice.”

The book is not meant for athletic coaches, but rather primarily for teachers. The author identifies 42 separate rules that are brief and focused. They often use sports or youth images, but they are not about play.

The sections of the book are as follows, with each having 5 – 6 short sub headers or rules:

* Rethinking practice

* How to practice

* using modeling

* Feedback

* Culture of practice

* Post practice: making new skills stick

* The Monday morning test

I did not care for the information in appendix A or B. I was an adjunct professor for 20 years at three different colleges and have taught thousands of professional workshops and these activities were just not on target from my perspective.

The closing comments on the books back cover share some very positive messages. They remind us that while we live in competition loving culture, our success is very likely to come from practice more than from just games.

Recommended.

As always, feedback is appreciated.

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

7 Practical Steps on MBWA

                           7 Practical Steps on MBWA:  Hotel Common Sense 
I was looking at some of my earlier articles written for hospitality publications and realized how well this one was received. Interesting to me that while so much in our businesses has changed, so much remains within our control to influence.

An earlier article used one of Tom Peters and Robert Waterman’s fundamentals from their groundbreaking book on changing the ways we do business.  IN SEARCH OF EXCELLENCE introduced a formal name for what the more successful hospitality managers already knew about motivating their staff. The phrase “Management by Walking Around” was based on Hewlett-Packard’s commitment to their staff with interaction – not micromanagement, but ongoing listening and responding to staff ideas.

Hotel Common Sense – Philosophy #2 , Or, why the Open Door policy no longer works… article outlined how today’s workforce wants and needs to be considered as individuals who can contribute to the success of their organization.

Reader feedback showed the growing awareness to that need for additional management and leadership “active listening” and this follow-up message on MBWA offers some concrete ways to notch up that effort of positive involvement.

1. Allow your staff to share complete stories and messages.  Many hospitality companies are trying to improve their customer care programs, yet how often do leaders and managers actually ask an hourly staff member to share a story about either an unhappy or very satisfied guest? Listening to the entire story could provide best practices that might be substantially more effective and less expensive than hiring a consultant.

2. Avoid the tendency to interrupt.   General Managers are results oriented people who are looking for the bottom line.  I know from personal experience the tendency to “hurry” people along is there, but allowing people to share the entire experience will encourage them to be more open.

3. Remember eye contact in conversations.  One of my first mentors taught me a great deal about hospitality, but his habit of looking over my shoulder when we were talking always made me feel I was missing something. Give confidence to people with your eyes.

4. Collect and communicate these stories of success (and failures). Sharing these stories (appropriately) at meetings of all staff, at training sessions, in newsletters and more provides an incentive to people to want to contribute because they have learned that you really do care. I have seen some outstanding examples of “you tube” like testimonials from a number of hospitality companies of all sizes.

5. Remember this is not a game of “one-up.”  As General Managers, we have likely been in the business longer or heard more stories and it is important to recognize that we should not try to offer one “better” story than the one we are hearing. Remember, MBWA is about “active listening.”

6. Credit the source.  When we add a new resource, form or best practice to our hospitality membership site, we obtain permission first and then always make certain we credit them fully. Each of us has unique approaches, messages and talents and sharing the credit with our associates and guests is essential to moving forward.

7. Build trust by honestly listening.  Some (correction, many) of the best suggestions I have ever heard as a manager or executive came from the people who are performing the job. I learned more about laundry sorting, washing pots and up-selling from people who were proud to be successful at what they were doing. Some of those suggestions needed clarification and some were not told as quickly as I might have preferred, but building teams means using all the team members’ strengths.

HOTEL COMMON SENSE was a phrase I learned from a great independent Vermont hotelier a generation ago,

Keys to Success Hospitality  Tip of the Week:

Focus on MBWA 

A challenge to every manager who is responsible for 5 or more people: measure your in and out of the office time and at the end of the week, see how much time you spent ACTIVELY INTERACTING with your team.

The goal is 70% of your time out of the office – how did you do?

What will you do next week?

As always, feedback is appreciated.

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

Christmas Gift Suggestions

TWO SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT LISTS WITH THE SAME INTENTIONS

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

 

Guest Blog message from Stanley Turkel- The Pineapple as a Symbol of Hospitality, Fanciful Travel Predictions & Definition of “Turnpike”,

Hotel History: Fanciful Prediction – In the September 1912 issue of American Homes & Gardens, futurist Harold D. Eberlein presented his predictions of the impact of air travel on American cities.  Eberlein foresaw a proliferation of roof gardens on top of large hotels to provide pleasing views for guests.  He also predicted that travelers could expect to find “clerks and bellboys posted on the top floor ready to attend to the immediate wants of tourists who have just arrived by airplane. Aerial taxicabs will circle like vultures over the hotel waiting for a doorman to signal one of them to alight and pick up a departing guest.” The creation of drones and self-driven vehicles shows just how close we are to fulfilling Eberlein’s fanciful prediction of the future. Google’s efforts to build delivery drones and internet-beaming balloons are no longer just science projects.

Definition of “Turnpike” – It came from the practice of placing a pike or staff across a toll road. One side of the pike was imbedded with spikes. When the toll was paid, the pike was turned spikes down so the traveler could pass. The first turnpike was built between Philadelphia and Lancaster in 1792.

The Pineapple as a Symbol of Hospitality – In order to understand how the pineapple became the symbol for hospitality, we must return to Newport, Rhode Island in the 17th century. It was founded in 1639 by settlers seeking religious freedom. Newport’s majestic schooners participated in the infamous Triangle trade:  ships would sail to western Africa to pick up slaves, continue to the Caribbean to trade the slaves for sugar, molasses and sugar and then back to New England. Along with these commodities, captains would bring home pineapples whose exotic shape and sweetness made them a rare delicacy in the colonies.  Before emails or cellphones, sea captains would place the pineapples on their gate posts or over their doorways to inform neighbors that they had returned.  Colonial hostesses would set a fresh pineapple as a centerpiece of their dining table when visitors joined their families in their homes.  Later, carved wooden pineapples were placed over the doorways of inns and hotels to represent hospitality.  The practice has continued to the present and frequently one sees the pineapple icon in hotels, restaurants and homes to signal an atmosphere of hospitality and welcome.

Hokusai, the great Japanese master printmaster, once wrote:

“From the age of six, I had a passion for copying the form of things and since the age of fifty I have published many drawings. Yet of all I drew by my seventieth year there is nothing worth taking into account. At seventy-three years I partly understood the structure of animals, birds, insects and fishes, and the life of grasses and plants. And so, at eighty-six I shall progress further; at ninety I shall even further penetrate their secret meaning, and by one hundred I shall perhaps truly have reached the level of the marvelous and divine. When I am one hundred and ten, each dot, each line will possess a life of its own.”

My Published Books

All of these books can be ordered from AuthorHouse by visiting www.stanleyturkel.com and clicking on the book’s title.

About Stanley Turkel 

Stanley Turkel was designated as the 2014 and the 2015` Historian of the Year by Historic Hotels of America, the official program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. This award is presented to an individual for making a unique contribution in the research and presentation of hotel history and whose work has encouraged a wide discussion and a greater understanding and enthusiasm for American History.

Turkel is a well-known consultant in the hotel industry. He operates his hotel consulting practice serving as an expert witness in hotel-related cases, provides asset management and hotel franchising consultation. He is certified as a Master Hotel Supplier Emeritus by the Educational Institute of the American Hotel and Lodging Association.

All of his books can be ordered from the publisher (AuthorHouse) by visiting www.stanleyturkel.com and clicking on the book title.

Contact: Stanley stanturkel@aol.com / 917-628-8549

Please Take Note   Effective June 5, 2018, my new address is:

Stanley Turkel, CMHS,   5000 Fairbanks Avenue #321,      Alexandria, Virginia 22311

______________________________________________________________

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

John@Hoganhospitality.com    Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

A very good introduction for those looking to find the value of “mindfulness.”​

 Get Some Headspace: How Mindfulness Can Change Your Life in Ten Minutes a Day

My son lived in Korea for five years and had communicated a number of Eastern beliefs and practices from his time there and I therefore had a fundamental awareness of the topic of mindfulness through meditation.

The title of this book intrigued me because like many Westerners, I felt a void in certain areas and felt “head space” could be a positive. The author, Andy Puddicombe, is a former Buddhist monk and is recognized as an important mindfulness meditation expert in the UK.

The introduction seems a bit drawn out, but it actually dispels some myths about meditation and introduces the reader to the reasons behind the concepts in the book. It addresses the values and principles of meditation, and the author’s personal experiences.

The book is in sections

1. ‘The Approach’

2. The Practice’

3. ‘The Integration’,

Each of these move the reader from background and general interest to preparing to meditate and then to incorporating the concept of mindfulness into your life.

Along the way are a series of short exercises one can do while reading, which is really a good introduction.

The book is manageable and easy to follow. Personal examples and stories are blended throughout the book and make the topics easier to follow as he is describing them.

He tries to balance the value of meditation between focus and relaxation, which makes the comments on mindfulness more understandable. The focus of “Get Some Headspace” is a greater awareness and understanding of ourselves and those we interact with. It focuses on finding our inner self, choosing how we see life and how we communicate and communicate with others

Puddicombe declares that meditating just ten minutes a day increases productivity, clarity and focus, reduces stress and anxiety, and helps with weight loss, improves sleep and personal relationships. He quotes research on increased blood flow and physical changes in the part of the brain that helps to control emotions and behavior and that mindfulness training can effectively treat certain addictions and eating disorders. There are claims of enhanced performance, in making sleep easier, and in a series of other improvements in cognitive skills and reducing the intensity of negative emotions, anxiety and harmful stress.

In reading books that claim to be life changing, it is always a challenge to write a meaningful and early review until one gets to judge the lasting benefits. The author’s website includes 10 free audio mediation sessions, which are supportive in trying to learn the how and why of the 10 minute habit.

I rate a 4 Star, and feel that “Get Some Headspace” is a very good introduction for beginners those looking to find the value of “mindfulness.”

John J Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO    John@Hoganhospitality.com

Office 480-436-0283   Cell 602-799-5375

Hotelier, Speaker, Educator, Author, Expert Witness

John J. Hogan, CHA CMHS CHE CHO

Speaker, Author, Expert Witness, Hotelier,Educator