4 hospitality trends for 2018 you need to know about

January 26, 2018

The only constant in the hospitality industry is the fact that it’s always changing. In the past few years alone, the industry has seen a major shift in how guests are booking, where they are booking and why. The competition has grown from other hotels to home share companies like Airbnb, HomeAway and VRBO, thanks to the growth (and spending) of millennial travelers. Beyond that, though, guests of all ages are seeking more from their hotel experience. They’re no longer just satisfied with a pillow to sleep on. From mobile check in to locally sourced artwork to more conversational marketing, hotels are having to constantly stay on the edge of the digital hospitality movement. Whether it’s adding in-room iPads or upgrading the way you clean, these are trends you need to adapt to in order to keep your business relevant and successful in 2018.

Mobile is everything

Travelers are connected to their cell phones now more than ever, and most aren’t just using it for Instagram. According to Adweek and Opera Mediaworks, over 85% of people book hotels, tours and even flights directly from their phones. Thanks to apps like Trips, Google’s Travel Assistant, guests are able to organize their hotels (and keep track of which ones they rated the highest), flag restaurants, book ubers and even get boarding passes right in their email. More than that, mobile integration is taking hospitality up a notch – by even offering mobile check in with the hotel’s app as well as the ability to customize everything in their room directly from their phones, from dimming the lights to ordering room service. To keep mobile savvy customers booking, ensure your hotel app is clean, useful, intuitive and innovative. In addition, ensure every room is outfitted with smart plugs that include USB chargers or all-purpose docking stations.

Smart rooms are key

It’s no longer just having the right plugs, it’s all about having a room that’s intuitive to the guest that’s in it. As most hotels program their TV’s to welcome you (with your name) and offer a customized itinerary based on your preferences, many are upping the game more. East Hong Kong offers guests the use of pre-programmed mobile phones complete with a data and calling plan so they can navigate the city, as well as restaurant recommendations, deals on attractions and even public transportation tips. Hilton, for example, is beta testing its first mobile-centric room, where everything is controlled with the tap of their finger on their phones. Marriott is capitalizing on the Internet of Things by offering mirrors with yoga tutorials. One thing is clear, AI (artificial intelligence) and virtual reality are going to play a big part in room design, and have the potential to make or break a hotel’s rating. According to Forbes and Ayush Sharma of Northwestern University, AI going to change the entire hospitality industry – from guest check-in to even employee management and security.

Keep it local

Millennials weren’t always the key demographic for hotels, but with this generation traveling more than any other, the need to keep up with their likes, dislikes and passions is becoming a key focus for many of the big, and smaller, brands. According to Jacob Marek, who spoke to the Boston Globe, millennials are a more curious traveler, and are always seeking experiences that go beyond the standard tour or typical hotel room. They’re looking for a connection to the destination, whether it’s a new country or city, and look for hotels that offer that local time in. Many hotels, like the Hilton in downtown Cleveland, work with local artists to commission pieces to display throughout the hotel. In addition, hotels – like Mr. C in Beverly Hills – offer customized itineraries completely related to the city, whether they be Hollywood tours or hikes up Runyon Canyon Park. Beyond just decor and the concierge, many hotels are focusing only on local food in their flagship restaurants. Millennial travelers are focused on keeping their money into the local community, which is why so many hotels are offering specialty menus based on seasonal produce in the area (like artisanal cheeses and wines in Northern California or fresh seafood in Miami). This farm to table movement, which has been a trend for years, is still a big focus many travelers look for when dining inside the hotel.  Valerie Chen, a travel writer for Travel Age West, wrote “Authenticity of the locale is paramount, as well as environmental sustainability and collaboration with the local community. Accor Hotels also extended this to non-guests, by allowing people living in the area (which is computed through their AccorLocal app) to use the hotel’s amenities.

Focus on the experiential

The next generation of hospitality and hotel design is going to focus more on experiential journeys and less on bulky and closed off spaces. Lobbies are going to offer more interactivity – from touch screens in the walls to furniture that inspires mingling and creativity. The conference rooms will no longer be just rooms, but will offer more ways to stay productive – whether that’s with the use of smart TVs, tech-forward podiums or even AI incorporation. The experiential aspect goes beyond just design, too. Guests want to feel like their decisions matter, and that they’re apart of where they stay. According to Travel Age West, keeping guests in the know about food waste, the hotel’s focus on environmental protection and sustainability, make the experience more impactful. Tying in with the focus on local, guests want to experience more with their stay – whether that’s an included activity in the destination, a meet and greet with the chef or even included Wi-Fi to keep them connected. Although the experiential component is easier for remote resorts, city and even airport hotels can adapt to the trend by giving the guest more to enjoy.

Expo in Orlando a smashing success

February 23, 2017

Each year, in late January, we host a Global Hospitality Expo that brings hospitality leaders together to share insights, explore ideas, build relationships, and make bold plans. This year was no different – except for the spectacular setting.

Yes, our 2017 Global Hospitality Expo was the first Expo to be held outside of the Chicago area. And the beautiful Hilton Bonnet Creek of Orlando proved to be a marvelous site for our 20th annual industry event.

More than 400 customers and suppliers joined our leaders and associates at this sun-drenched resort. This year’s Expo theme – Discover what’s new. Realize what’s next. – captured the essence of a hospitality industry poised for progress.

At Expo, members of our Merchandising team helped customers discover new, innovative products.

Our senior leaders kicked off the event with an engaging look at the latest American Hotel initiatives and improvements. The memorable Expo moments also included a lively keynote from Billy Beane, the one-of-a-kind Major League Baseball executive and subject of the film “Moneyball.” Other highlights of this special week included:

  • Customer and supplier breakout sessions
  • Rotating supplier presentations
  • An exclusive customer trade show
  • Vibrant product and room displays
  • Annual Expo awards dinner

This Expo also featured our First Annual Duck Derby in the resort’s lazy river. The clever fundraising race brought in $35,722, which was distributed to over 40 charities.

As in year’s past, the final night of Expo week celebrated the achievements of our supplier partners and our dedicated associates.

The 20th annual Expo, like those that came before it, is a tradition that sets us apart and embodies our commitment to improving all that we do for our customers, our suppliers, and our associates.

Create a clean impression and keep guests coming back

November 10, 2016

It makes perfect sense that, according to a recent survey by P&G Professional, 49% of restaurant and hospitality businesses believe that keeping their guests satisfied is the most important area of focus. And, of course, guest satisfaction depends on your ability to maintain a clean property.

Two-ounce travel size bottle

In hospitality, the cleanliness of guest rooms, bathrooms, towels, linens, and common areas all play a critical role in guest satisfaction. From the moment guests open the door to their room, they are making judgments on the adequacy of the accommodations. When you turn to top trusted brands to keep your property fresh and clean, you offer guests a level of assurance and confidence that will keep them coming back.

Traveling can be hard, and guests want to feel comfortable. They often want the best part of home to go with them when they travel. For example, a great way to create this home environment at an extended stay property is by using the #1 selling brand of dishwashing liquid, Dawn. For this very purpose and these very guests, Dawn recently launched a two-ounce travel size bottle. Having the familiar brand of Dawn next to the kitchen sink can be very welcoming for new guests to a hotel or resort.

Dawn suds last two times longer than the leading competitor*, so your guests can get through more dishes with less liquid. No matter what they have cooking in the kitchen, Dawn dishwashing liquid will leave dishes squeaky clean every time, giving guests the experience they are used to from home.

Providing brands that provide comfort for customers leaves a great first impression and also drives customer loyalty, keeping guests coming back year after year and even recommending the hotel to others.

*Based on cleaning ingredients vs. next leading competitor

Set your property apart with
custom embroidery

November 7, 2016

The aim of nearly every hotel or resort property, no matter how reasonable or refined, is to do everything possible to create a uniquely memorable guest experience. Of course, this is what keeps guests coming back and what spurs them to promote the joys of their stay to others.

Often, it’s the small but special details of a guest room setting that make the most lasting impression. Consider the graceful accents of embroidery. Through custom embroidery, properties like yours are able to add a tailored look and branded finish to their fine fabrics. With your property name beautifully stitched into a cozy robe or comfortable towel, guests are sure to take note.

As the premier hospitality source, we operate a state-of-the-art embroidery machine able to create custom looks, logos and messaging on virtually any fabric a property would want.

We embroider robes, slippers, towels, select sheeting products, accessory bags and more. With 8 heads, 120 needles and 120 spools of thread, our amazing machine can embroider a single design on eight different garments at the same time.

  • With up to 15 different colors possible within a single embroidery, we can embroider any logo or style
  • We can cut order time by two weeks to help customers save money and time
  • Our machine’s precise capabilities offer our luxury customers a world of possibilities

With embroidery, you can accentuate the positive and keep your name in the minds of your guests. To place an order or ask questions about our embroidery capabilities, you can simply contact your sales representative.

Tips for working smarter, not harder

August 26, 2016
  • Buy ready-to-use sheets and towels. They can be unpacked and put into service immediately, no washing needed. Because you save time, reduce water usage and energy costs, you’ll also achieve sustainability goals as well.
  • Save on laundry costs and protect the environment by using conservation signage. There are several kinds to choose from, including signs that cover sheet and towel re-use and general energy consumption.
  • Be sure to invest in No Smoking signs to keep your property’s air clean, too. This saves time in cleaning and deodorizing rooms and public spaces.
  • Keep a small tool kit on housekeeping carts, so that your housekeeping staff can fix minor problems, instead of taking a room out of service.
  • Use an Instant Erasing Pad or Magic Eraser® to save time cleaning scuff marks off of any surface.
  • Provide “light touch” housekeeping service every other day for multiple-day guests, which reduces labor as well as costs of products required to service room.
  • Use lint rollers to save time picking up lint and hair in bathrooms and rugs.
  • To leverage productivity of your housekeeping, security, maintenance, room service and other staff, use two-way radios.

A simple solution for faster, easier and healthier bedmaking

August 26, 2016

Designed to save time and backs, the Bed MadeEZ® Mattress Lifter is easily inserted between any mattress and box spring. It lifts/holds the mattress while sheets and blankets are tucked in.

More Bed MadeEZ features and benefits:

  • Helps reduce soft tissue damage and fatigue from repetitive lifting
  • Helps minimize workers’ compensation claims due to repetitive lifting
  • Perfect for use in tight places, like next to night stands
  • Polyurethane with rubber overmold handle
  • Made in the USA
  • Lifetime replacement warranty

Find the right fit with the Quick Cart from Rubbermaid

August 4, 2016

Looking to elevate your housekeeping game? Explore the advantages of the powerfully flexible Rubbermaid Quick Cart.

Sure, its very name spells out its biggest benefit. Compared to traditional housekeeping carts, the Quick Cart does indeed speed the cleaning process. Compact and lightweight, it easily maneuvers in tight spaces. It also offers versatile compartments, which allow for multiple configurations and uses around all areas of your property.

Here’s another housekeeping bonus. The Quick Cart is quiet and discreet. Its modern design blends into public areas and, as it disappears into guest rooms, this smart cart helps your staff keep a low profile in the cleaning process.

Just as importantly, the Quick Cart withstands rigorous daily use. It’s constructed with high-performance materials for added strength and durability. Treated with Dupont Teflon fabric protector, the cart repels water, oil and stains – greatly extending its life.

Part of the Executive Series, the Quick Cart is a prime example of Rubbermaid’s reputation for delivering efficient and effective cleaning tools. What more can we say? See for yourself why the Quick Cart is becoming hospitality’s go-to housekeeping solution.

Mattress protection for guests, brand protection for you

May 31, 2016

7389CRS-BSECKWant to stop bed bugs, stains and spills in their tracks? Turn to CleanRest Pro mattress encasements.

CleanRest Pro encasements are the last encasements you’ll buy for the mattress you’re protecting. These specialized products, designed using patented technology, offer spoilage and bed bug protection with a 100% waterproof sleep surface. CleanRest Pro encasements promote healthy sleep by blocking allergens and irritants, and they enhance your guests’ quality of sleep with their soft, quiet, breathable material. Plus, they come with an unparalleled 10-year full product warranty and exclusive access to their ROI property analysis calculator.

No other product on the market provides the same level of defense against bed bugs, stains and wetness.

Designed with the hotel owner in mind, CleanRest Pro encasements are engineered to last the 10-year life of the mattress, not the 12-month life cycle of the bed bug. Thanks to their stretchy sidewall and bottom fabric, they can be installed and reinstalled easily, and commercially laundered repeatedly, making them the only preemptive encasement solution.

By encasing your property before the onset of an inevitable bed bug occurrence, you’re insuring the life of one of your most costly assets, your mattress. The bed bug proof technology of CleanRest Pro denies access to the mattress, causing bed bugs to move further away from your sleeping guests and allowing you the chance to find them before your patrons do.

CleanRest Pro mattress encasements protect against bed bugs, spoilage, and the fallout from negative social media reviews. Protect your investment as well as your reputation with CleanRest Pro.

Here’s an added advantage. As a one-stop shopping source for your bedding needs, American Hotel invites you to try a free sample of this superior mattress protection. Call us today at 1-800-323-5686 to order your free sample.

Triple Sheet Your Beds in 6 Easy Steps

May 20, 2016

Triple sheeting is a luxurious, cost-effective and efficient bedding solution. It guarantees a clean, crisp bed that is easily managed by the housekeeping staff, ultimately saving considerable time and money.

Sheeting components can be laundered after each guest visit to ensure a sanitary environment.

Bedspreads can cost $100-$250 per piece, and up to $25 per piece in off-site laundering. By replacing a bedspread with one additional sheet, the Triple Sheeting technique can significantly reduce overall operational costs.

Duvet covers cause housekeeping to spend three times longer to make the bed. Triple Sheeting is an easy step-by-step process that can greatly increase housekeeping efficiency.

ITEMS NEEDED: flat or fitted sheet to cover mattress, basic flat sheet, lightweight blanket and decorative top sheet

Option 1: Lay a flat sheet on the mattress and tuck all the way around the bed. Option 2: Use a fitted sheet to cover the mattress.

Place the top hem of flat sheet so it is even with the top of the mattress. The sheet should be even on all sides and smooth.

Place a lightweight blanket on top of the middle sheet starting about six inches below the top of the mattress.

Place remaining flat sheet on top of the blanket. The top hem should be even with the top of the mattress.

Fold 1: Take the top of both flat sheets and fold down together about six inches (blanket should not be included in this fold). Fold 2: Then fold down the two flat sheets and the blanket another six inches. The sheets should now be folded twice and the blanket folded once.

Tuck in both flat sheets along with the blanket beneath the foot of the mattress. The hanging fabric at the sides of the foot will have made a short U-shape. Turn back the U-shape along the length of the bed then pull towards the headboard, parallel to the mattress. Tuck the hanging corners of the sheet and blanket together under the mattress.

HYGEN™-ic is more becoming to your staff and guests

May 20, 2016

The Rubbermaid HYGEN™ Disposable Microfiber System is the solution for optimizing infection prevention, ensuring environmental hygiene, and improving productivity. The innovative technology knits microfiber yarn into a nonwoven substrate, creating unique, disposable microfiber with microbe-removing scrubbing power.1027244#W_1_300x300

99.9% Microbe Removal, Including C. diff*

  • Proven 99.9% microbe removal claim
  • Helps stop the chain of infection
  • Eliminates food sources for live pathogens

Superior Cleaning Performance

  • Microfiber cleaning with built-in scrubbing power
  • Streak-free cleaning for mirrors, glass, and stainless steel
  • Effectively removes dirt without smearing

Versatile Cleaning

  • Compatible with bleach and quat**
  • Ideal for dusting and wet cleaning
  • Convenient charging system and compatible with existing tools

Microbe removal is a critical step in preventing infection. Removing dead microbes eliminates the food source for live pathogens.

*Based on third-party testing with water only. The product can be used with a wide array of cleaning solutions.
EPA EST. 90650-NC-001

**Compatible with quat (cloth); bleach-safe (cloth and mop)