A Colorado wildfire of epic proportions continues to sweep through parts of the state Wednesday, disrupting hotel operations at several properties while causing anxiety at others.
Local officials ordered the evacuation of the Hyatt House Colorado Springs and Hyatt Place Colorado Springs/Garden of the Gods late Tuesday evening. “Hyatt House Colorado Springs will be closed for arrivals for the next five days, and Hyatt Place Colorado Springs/Garden of the Gods will be closed for arrivals for the next 10 days. Both hotels will waive all cancellation and rebooking charges and will work with each traveler to make future arrangements,” according to a statement.
Roughly nine miles south, the iconic Broadmoor hotel remains open and fully operational after a long night for operators who anxiously monitored shifting wind patterns in the area.
“We are open for business. The base of the fire on the south end has been secured and is moving rapidly away from us,” said Allison Scott, director of communications, at approximately 9 a.m. Eastern Daylight Time on Wednesday. “The impact on the north end of town has been intense, but down here, except for some smoke in the air, it’s kind of the tale of two cities. Down here we have sunshine, no wind at the moment.”
The aftershocks from hotel data breaches at Wyndham Hotels and Resorts in 2008 and again in 2010 hit the company hard Tuesday.
The New York Times is reporting that the Federal Trade Commission on Tuesday charged Wyndham Worldwide and three hotel and resort affiliates with allowing three breaches of its corporate data files in two years, resulting in the electronic theft of the credit-card data of hundreds of thousands of the hotel chain’s customers.
The commission charged Wyndham, which says it cooperated with the investigation, with unfair and deceptive practices, violating Section 5 of the Federal Trade Commission Act. Wyndham claimed on its website that it protected the personal data of its customers, the FTC. said.
The FTC’s complaint claimed more than $10.6 million in fraud losses. Wyndham, however, said it knew of no customers who suffered a financial loss because of the incidents.
A biennial index released Wednesday by Jones Lang LaSalle and LaSalle Investment Management reveals that nearly 90% of markets have registered advances in real-estate transparency during the past two years, driven by improving market fundamentals data and performance measurement, combined with better governance of listed vehicles.
Key findings of the report include:
- The United States ranks as the world’s most transparent real-estate market in 2012, followed closely by the United Kingdom and Australia.
- Environmental sustainability emerged as an important transparency factor with the U.K., Australia and France, the most transparent markets in terms of real-estate sustainability. Dubai, United Arab Emirates, on the other hand, has lower scores than other major global cities in respect of the transparency of sustainability related issues.
- Continued transparency deficiencies are present in many African, Middle Eastern and Latin American markets. Nations scoring the lowest on transparency include Sudan, Nigeria, Ghana, Iraq, Pakistan and Algeria.
- While transparency has improved in 80% of the markets across MENA over the past two years, these gains have been relatively modest and real-estate markets in MENA remain less transparent than other global regions. Dubai remains the region’s most transparent market but achieves only a middle ranking in global terms (47 of 97 markets covered globally), while Lebanon showed the greatest improvement over the past two years.
As more and more technologies are introduced for hoteliers to both maximize operating efficiencies and wow guests, connecting those technologies to one another presents more of a challenge, writes HotelNewsNow.com’s Jason Q. Freed in a report from the Hotel Investment Technology Expo and Conference.
Getting technology tools to interact with each other—whether it be for distributing inventory, collecting guest data or offering the guest a seamless check-in experience—is a must for hoteliers. Today, however, many technologies operate on different platforms and don’t “speak the same language.” Different brands require varying languages and different vendors offer their own unique connectivity plugs.
For that reason, a number of organizations are working toward uniformed connectivity standards. The goal is to have all hotel technologies operating on the same platform so hoteliers can “plug and play” technology tools and have seamless connectivity.
Revenue managers are suffering a branding crisis. And until they do a better job defining who they are, what they do and the value they can deliver, they will have a hard time effecting change in every discipline of the hotel business, concluded Craig Eiseter, VP of revenue management for InterContinental Hotels Group, during the closing session of HSMAI’s Revenue Optimization Conference.
Eister outline four key steps to build a better brand for revenue management:
1. Develop clear, articulate vision statements and continuously repeat them at every presentation and meeting.
2. Create a value proposition so that other departments within a hotel company understand how revenue management can enhance existing capabilities.
3. Strengthen interpersonal skills to encourage teamwork across silos.
4. Continue to innovate and drive progress ahead.
Compiled by Stephanie Wharton and Patrick Mayock.