In Tough Question Requires Equally Tough Answers, hospitality expert witness Steven Belmonte, President and C.E.O., Hospitality Solutions LLC, asks the questions: “Are product upgrades and renovations really needed during hard economic times?”
First of all, it doesn’t matter whether you’re operating in a recession or in the most robust economy imaginable. The fact is that if your hotel doesn’t meet guest expectations, if it’s inferior to other, similarly priced properties in your market-well then, you need to upgrade. In fact, if you think you’re being fiscally responsible by not upgrading your hotel’s public spaces and guestrooms right now, you’re mistaken. Failing to renovate could lead to an irreversible decline in guest satisfaction and loyalty-and that scenario, obviously, will destroy your bottom line.
Here’s another piece of advice for hotel owners and operators: It’s crucial that you have in-depth knowledge of your property’s competitive position in the market. You have to take a thoughtful-and brutally honest-look at the quality of your hotel. Ask yourself if the property meets the needs of today’s increasingly demanding guest. How does your hotel compare with nearby (and perhaps much newer) properties? If your hotel isn’t cutting the mustard qualitywise, its future-and yours-is looking very dim.