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  • Value Added Tax in the GCC

    Details on the new VAT established in the region covered by the GCC, including implementation best practices and documentation requirements. By Tanya Venegas, MBA, MHM, CHIA

  • Members Only: A Room for Robots in Hospitality

    Realistic uses for artificial intelligence are increasing, making way for machine-based assistance in accounting, marketing, customer service and more. This feature details current scenarios where robotics is used in the business environment, such as for accounting tasks.

  • Letter from the HFTP Global President: A New Year Equals New Possibilities

    Written By: Timothy G. Nauss, CHAE - We are officially in the year 2018. Now is the ideal time to reflect on the successes of the old year, and prepare to make this new year the best one ever. Just as we set goals for ourselves to make us healthier, happier and more successful, HFTP as an organization sets goals each year to better meet the needs of our members and the hospitality industry.

  • GDPR in Hospitality: Vendor Compliance Query Template Available to Industry

    As a professional association, Hospitality Financial and Technology Professionals (HFTP®) created a group of hospitality industry experts to develop hospitality-specific guidelines to assist with preparation for General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliance.

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Cool Roofs - Saving Hoteliers Energy Costs!

Hotels University·17 January 2018
Hoteliers in warm and sunny climate zones often face the challenge of high monthly cooling expenses. After publishing a series on energy efficient hotel solutions, I received some questions about how a cool roof could be used in a hotel application. Cool roofs are a roofing that reflects sunlight and heat away from a building to reduce roof temperatures and the corresponding heat entering a building.
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Efficient Hotel Design Tips - Save Monthly Utility Costs

Hotels University·10 January 2018
With construction costs on the rise, most developers are looking for ways to cut both upfront and operational costs. One way to drive down operational costs is to design a hotel as energy efficient as possible. While we see very few developers pursuing “formal” sustainable certifications like LEED, we do encourage all of our clients to at least evaluate “selfish sustainability” measures – design aspects that benefit both the environment AND the bottom line.

Hotel Shadow Studies Bring Added Value In Design

Hotels University·26 December 2017
Hotel developers do not want to enter their first summer season and realize their hotel pool sits in the shadow 90% of the day! Architectural shadow studies early in the design process will help you avoid this, as well as other costly design mistakes. See below for a shadow time-lapse video of a Hyatt Place recently designed by the Base4 visualization team. You can see the added value this feature brings by visualizing how light and shadows impact your project.
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Extended Stay Hotels On The Rise!

Hotels University·13 December 2017
In last week’s post, we discussed the popular U.S. hotel brands according to pipeline quantity. The most popular brand in the U.S. is an extended stay hotel, Home2 Suites by Hilton. With more people staying in extended stay hotels than ever before, we wanted to explore this sector of the industry.
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What are the most popular hotel brands?

Hotels University·13 December 2017
According to a recent Lodging Econometrics report, the world hotel construction market is growing 8% year over year. The U.S market has played a big role in this growth. Here are the top 5 cities in the U.S. with the highest hotel construction:

Hotel Block & Plank Costs On The Rise

Hotels University·21 November 2017
Evaluate Your Construction Options To Reduce Project Costs I received some great feedback from our readers on our recent Rising Lumber Costs newsletter. We had lots of intriguing questions and wanted to continue this dialogue by sharing some similar information about pricing trends for CMU (Block) and Hollow Core Plank construction. I’d like to start by sharing some relevant data to help clarify overall picture. Our team designed three Holiday Inn Express hotel projects in the same geographical region for the same developer and GC using the same construction type (Block & Plank). The owners were kind enough to share the construction cost data on these projects, so we could better communicate the market trends we are seeing in numbers.

What Construction Type is Right for your Hotel?

Hotels University·16 November 2017
Hardly a day goes by where we don’t find ourselves talking to hotel developers about construction types. Whether it be wood, concrete, steel, block & plank, or ICF, construction costs continue to be on the rise and evaluating all your options for construction early on will help ensure you select the one that is right for your project goals and budget. HU works on hotel projects across the US. We thought it would be valuable to share some of the data we’ve collected on the construction types our clients are choosing for their new-build hotel projects. Below is a chart highlighting the last 100 limited & select service hotel projects our team has designed and the associated distribution by construction type. As the chart shows, wood framed and block and plank make up nearly 90% of the projects we’ve designed.
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Hotel HVAC Systems - What Are My Options? Part 2

Hotels University· 7 August 2017
This week, I expand upon our previous newsletter and continue the discussion about HVAC systems (PTAC, VTAC, and VRF). In this newsletter, I will discuss the basics of each HVAC system including their installation and basic operations.
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Hotel HVAC Systems - What Are My Options? Part 1

Hotels University·18 July 2017
Hotel owners estimate that hotel guestroom energy consumption accounts for approximately 40% to 80% of total building energy use. This is a very high percentage of a hotel’s operating budget so guestroom HVAC systems are not something that should be taken lightly. We often field questions about what HVAC system is right for a hotel so we thought it would be valuable to prepare a newsletter series to explore and discuss these options with you.
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Should You Go Modular With Your Next Hotel - Part 4

Hotels University·10 July 2017
I received some great feedback from our readers on our recent Hotel Bathroom Pods and Full Modular Guestrooms newsletters, which sparked a lot of new dialogue and questions. I thought it would be helpful to our readers to collect these questions and formulate a hotel modular construction FAQ list. Below is a collection of these questions and our responses:

Should You Go Modular With Your Next Hotel - Part 3

Hotels University·27 June 2017
As I discussed in previous newsletters Modular Construction & Hotel Bathroom Pods, modular is gaining new attention in the United States especially in the hotel sector. Fabricated bathroom pods are just a part of modular construction that minimizes a project punch list – fabricating entire hotel bays is another beneficiary option for modular. In this newsletter, I share the processes involved in utilizing full modular guestroom units and bays.

Should You Go Modular With Your Next Hotel - Part 2

Hotels University·15 June 2017
In the previous newsletter, I introduced the modular construction method. Last month, I attended the first East Coast Modular Stacking Event, which was dedicated to upcoming developments of Modular Construction in the US market. Please follow the link Should you go modular with your next hotel? As I continue this topic, I would like to share helpful information about modular bathroom pods.

Should You Go Modular With Your Next Hotel - Part 1

Hotels University·30 May 2017
I was honored to join Marriott International, OTO Development, Champion Commercial Structures and Le Chase Construction for the first East Coast Modular Stacking Event at the Marriott AC in Chapel Hill, North Carolina last week. I would like to thank Marriott International and especially Jennifer Lund, Senior Director of Global Design Strategies for Marriott, for this distinct invitation, which gave me an opportunity to share my experience and vision on upcoming developments of Modular Construction in the US market. While attending the event I had the opportunity to meet with many leaders and pioneers in the modular hotel industry to discuss both the benefits and challenges they have experienced with modular construction in the hotel sector. Hearing their personal experiences firsthand was very insightful.
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How to build a five story wood framed hotel - Part 3

Hotels University·21 February 2017
In case you missed it… in part 2, we explored potential ways to increase wood buildings to five stories using Type IIIA construction. (Link to Part 2). Another option for building a 5-story wood hotel is the use of a podium design.
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How to build a five story wood framed hotel - Part 2

Hotels University·21 January 2017
In Part 1, we explored code restrictions pertaining to wood structures and potential ways to increase building height and number of stories. As discussed in Part 1 (Link to part 1), the International Building Code (IBC) classifies traditional wood framed construction as Type V and allows a maximum of four stories when utilizing an approved sprinkler system.
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How to build a five story wood framed hotel - Part 1

Hotels University·15 December 2016
Today marks the beginning of a new three-part series about 5-story wood framed hotel construction. We often get asked about 5-story wood framed hotel construction due to confusion regarding what is allowed by the code. In this series, we attempt to address your concerns and questions.Before we can dive directly into 5-story wood construction, we need to briefly understand how the International Building Code (IBC) classifies wood construction and corresponding restrictions, as follows:
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How to keep your hotel guestrooms quiet! Part 5b: Flanking Noise Sources

Hotels University·15 November 2016
In last week’s module, we discussed two of the most common sources of flanking noise. (Link to Part 5a) This week we focus on two additional sources and how to reduce and eliminate them in your hotel. As a brief reminder, flanking noise is simply noise that transfers from one space to another via an indirect pathway. Below are the most common sources of flanking noise and the related design ideas to reduce such noise in your hotel guestrooms:

Hotel Laundry - Don't throw money down the drain!

Hotels University·29 January 2016
One of the largest operational expenses for hotels is back-of-house laundry. Hotel operators know that these services utilize significant gas and water utilities, use valuable hotel manpower and also lead to more frequent linen replacement. What can a hotel do to cut down on these costs?

Hotel Salt Water Pools - Myths Debunked!

Hotels University· 1 January 2016
In recent years, salt water (Saline) pools have been growing in popularity vs their Chlorinated pool counterpart. In hotels across the US, we are seeing more and more hotel owners that are exploring salt water as an option. When most people here ‘salt water pool’ they have visions of a 5-star luxury resort with water that is safer, healthier and rolls like butter across the skin. Because of this, we wanted to debunk a few of the most common myths about these types of pools.

Guestroom Outside Air - What are my options!? (Part 2)

Hotels University· 1 December 2015
Previously in Part 1 of this series, I briefly described the three most common methods for introducing fresh air into a hotel guestroom; Standard PTAC with open damper (Method #1); PTAC with two-stage system (Method #2); and a Dedicated Outside Air System (Method #3).

Turn up the heat in your hotel pool room to SAVE money...

Hotels University·15 October 2015
Turn up the heat in your pool room and save money… It may seem counterintuitive, but by paying a little more to heat your pool room, you may actually be saving money on your hotel utility bills. The reason for this boils down to one simple word… evaporation.

Guestroom Outside Air - What are my options!? (Part 1)

Hotels University·15 September 2015
We’ve all experienced the comforting sensation of stepping into a hotel guestroom and being met by a rush of fresh clean air as we open the door. First impressions to hotel guests are important and fresh air gives the immediate feelings of clean, cool, and calm which is exactly the guest experience hotel owners want to give their guests. On the other hand, we’ve all probably experienced the opposite and been hit in the face with humid air or stale odors and the negative impression it leaves.

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