Big cuts on tourism board are impairing small businesses

Travel and Tour World | May 23, 2019

Cenotes, cultural sites and adventure tours are sensing the ache because of the government’s drastic cuts at the Mexico Tourism Board.As important destinations like Cancun still get some marketing aid from leading hotels and resorts, independent tour operators in smaller destinations are mainly facing the challenge, reports Skift.Tulum, the only Mayan archaeological site in Mexico built on the waterfront, is mainly known for suffering, stated city native Manuel Rodriguez, whose scuba tours went from boom to bust.At present, Rodriguez travels to international tourism fairs, like the ones in Berlin, Spain, and London, all by his own to endorse his company with videos, postcards, and posters.

Spotlight

While vacations can be all about relaxation, exploring new cultures, and leaving one’s comfort zone, a healthy dose of caution can go a long way toward staying safe. Read on for the 10 most common travel safety mishaps, and how you can avoid similar problems during your next trip.

Spotlight

While vacations can be all about relaxation, exploring new cultures, and leaving one’s comfort zone, a healthy dose of caution can go a long way toward staying safe. Read on for the 10 most common travel safety mishaps, and how you can avoid similar problems during your next trip.

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DESTINATION AND TOURISM,HOSPITALITY TRENDS

EPISODE Hsinchu Officially Debuts as the First Hotel in the JdV by Hyatt Portfolio in Taiwan

Hyatt Hotels Corporation | November 22, 2022

Hyatt Hotels Corporation (NYSE: H) announced the official opening of EPISODE Hsinchu, marking the first hotel within the JdV by Hyatt portfolio in Taiwan and the debut of the Hotel EPISODE brand which delivers new experiences that match the unique rhythms of the modern lifestyle traveler."Modern travelers have outgrown the one-size-fits-all business versus leisure mindset, and in response, we created the Hotel EPISODE brand for that community. Our guests can fuse a day’s worth of collaborative work with new encounters that not only energize them, but also make time for true rest,” said Aaron Chan, Chairman of Riant Capital and creator of the Hotel EPISODE brand. Located along Taiwan’s northwestern coast, Hsinchu is about an hour’s drive from Taipei and 40 minutes from Taoyuan International Airport. The city is globally renowned for its Hsinchu Science Park – also known as the Silicon Valley of Taiwan, and is home to top science and technology-focused universities and research institutes. Aside from being a technology innovation hub, Hsinchu features ancient architectural and cultural landmarks such as Chenghuang Temple and East Gate as well as scenic attractions such as 18 Peaks Mountain Park and Siangshan Wetlands. The hotel is conveniently located adjacent to the main freeway exit and a short drive from the Hsinchu Science Park. Westwood Restaurant curated by Michelin-starred Chef Richie Lin Westwood is Hsinchu’s newest culinary destination, a modern California fusion bistro serving comfort food. With its 1930s Art Deco-inspired interiors and an island bar with a vintage LA vibe that takes center stage, Westwood is a great place to dine and imbibe. Every morning begins with Chef Richie Lin’s “Around the World” variety of Western and Asian breakfast bento, including California-style avocado pancakes, Scandinavian rye sourdough with smoked salmon, and Hsinchu rice noodles and guabao. SOCIAL, an all-access lounge for the community The hotel’s aptly named communal space, SOCIAL, is an “all-access” living room for in-house guests as well as anyone in the neighborhood to meet or celebrate. In addition to offering all-day complimentary snacks, refreshments and a daily happy hour, SOCIAL will regularly host comedy shows, movie nights, live musical performances and DJ sets, serving as a vibrant new platform in the city for play, creativity and discovery. Thoughtful In-room Amenities The pet-friendly hotel features 140 stylish rooms and suites, all of which come with fine comforts such as 400-thread-count sheets, Sealy premium pillowtop mattresses, sleep kits and luxurious bathroom amenities. For guests staying in the hotel’s most premium Loft Suites, a Dyson Supersonic hairdryer and a cocktail-making bar serving Aquagen sparkling water are among the joy-driven offerings. In-room bottled water for all guests is provided in reusable glass bottles, a first step in Hotel EPISODE brand’s commitment to be more environmentally conscious. Self-Check-In System Leveraging technology for more streamlined and efficient service, the hotel has introduced self-check-in kiosks with the goal of minimizing wait time at check-in. The traditional front desk has been replaced with a dedicated team of Experience Providers who offer personalized service to each guest. Embracing the brand’s namesake (joie de vivre), the JdV by Hyatt portfolio offers a collection of independent properties that are true reflections of the urban neighborhoods they call home, inviting guests and locals alike to connect and celebrate the joy of life while unwinding in spaces designed with distinctive personality. Special Opening Package Now Available to Book Enjoy a one-night stay with two Westwood breakfasts and set dinners (worth NT$1500) specially crafted by Chef Richie starting from NT$7,199. For more information, please visit the EPISODE Hsinchu website. To make a reservation, please contact 03-516-9311. World of Hyatt Gives Members 500 Reasons to Stay Somewhere New To provide World of Hyatt members even more ways to be rewarded, World of Hyatt is offering members the opportunity to earn 500 Bonus Points for qualifying nights at EPISODE Hsinchu from November 1, 2022 to February 28, 2023, as part of World of Hyatt’s new hotel member offer. Additional participating hotels and their offer stay periods can be found at worldofhyatt.com/newhotelbonus. No registration is required and members can earn on top of other offers. The term “Hyatt” is used in this release for convenience to refer to Hyatt Hotels Corporation and/or one or more of its affiliates. About JdV by Hyatt A community for the spirited, the light-hearted, the young-at-heart, the JdV by Hyatt brand offers a collection of vibrant, independent hotels that are true reflections of the urban neighborhoods we call home. Embracing its namesake (joie de vivre), the JdV by Hyatt brand invites guests and locals alike to connect, live in the moment and celebrate the joy of life. Each hotel provides an experience that is inclusive in spirit and space, inviting all to make each stay yours truly. Follow @JDVHotels on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter for news and updates. For more information, please visit www.jdvbyhyatt.com. About Hyatt Hotels Corporation Hyatt Hotels Corporation, headquartered in Chicago, is a leading global hospitality company guided by its purpose – to care for people so they can be their best. As of September 30, 2022, the Company’s portfolio included more than 1,200 hotels and all-inclusive properties in 72 countries across six continents. The Company's offering includes brands in the Timeless Collection, including Park Hyatt®, Grand Hyatt®, Hyatt Regency®, Hyatt®, Hyatt Residence Club®, Hyatt Place®, Hyatt House®, and UrCove; the Boundless Collection, including Miraval®, Alila®, Andaz®, Thompson Hotels®, Hyatt Centric®, and Caption by Hyatt; the Independent Collection, including The Unbound Collection by Hyatt®, Destination by Hyatt™, and JdV by Hyatt™; and the Inclusive Collection, including Hyatt Ziva®, Hyatt Zilara®, Zoëtry® Wellness & Spa Resorts, Secrets® Resorts & Spas, Breathless Resorts & Spas®, Dreams® Resorts & Spas, Vivid Hotels & Resorts®, Alua Hotels & Resorts®, and Sunscape® Resorts & Spas. Subsidiaries of the Company operate the World of Hyatt® loyalty program, ALG Vacations®, Unlimited Vacation Club®, Amstar DMC destination management services, and Trisept Solutions® technology services. For more information, please visit www.hyatt.com.

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Lightspeed to launch new flagship platform, Lightspeed Restaurant, to power Australian hospitality revival

Lightspeed Commerce Inc | September 08, 2022

Lightspeed Commerce Inc. ( NYSE: LSPD) (TSX: LSPD), the one-stop commerce platform for merchants around the world to simplify, scale, and create exceptional customer experiences, has announced the initial launch of Lightspeed Restaurant in the Australian market - a unified hospitality commerce and point-of-sale (POS) platform to power Australia's restaurant revival.Unveiling at Fine Food Australia, and coming soon to Australian businesses Lightspeed Restaurant, an industry-leading cloud platform, combines an innovative POS, contactless integrated payments, online ordering, advanced inventory, industry leading analytics and more; enabling operators to run smarter, more efficient restaurants. The local launch of Lightspeed Restaurant integrates cutting edge technology to build a single product that incorporates the best features of Australian leading Kounta and the breadth and sophistication of Lightspeed's market leading capabilities, and comes as Australia's world-famous dining industry continues to defy economic pressure. Data from a subset of Australian restaurants, cafes and bars using Lightspeed in July found that year-over-year revenue was up 50.3% in restaurants, 48.5% in bars, and 25.7% in cafes compared to the same month in 2021. Remarkably, July was the sixth successive month of year-over-year growth*. "Bringing Lightspeed Restaurant to an Australian market famed for the vibrancy of its hospitality sector is an exciting moment for Lightspeed. Restaurants have rapidly accelerated their digital transformation in recent years, and today merchants can't compromise when it comes to technology. Lightspeed Restaurant allows Australian restaurant owners to take control of seat level ordering, multiple service environments, complex printing setups, and more, all through a single commerce platform - providing the solution they need to meet and exceed the needs of their customers, empower their team and overcome the challenges of today." -Peter Dougherty, General Manager of Hospitality, at Lightspeed Key features of Lightspeed Restaurant include: Advanced insights: Lightspeed Restaurant informs operators what turns customers into regulars, who their best wait staff are and why, and makes them feel like they're on the floor every day even across multiple locations. Comprehensive integrated inventory: Track and automate inventory without breaking the bank. Know exactly how much product was sold, how much is still on hand, and how much is needed from a supplier for the next order. Speed and automation for the front of the house: Optimised by years of user testing, Lightspeed Restaurant is easy to use and train on, key for hiring and retaining staff and running smoother shifts in busy environments. Innovative ordering and payments with Order Anywhere: Fully integrated with Lightspeed Restaurant, Order Anywhere provides contactless ordering and payments for dine-in, and commission-free ordering for takeout, with the flexibility to either pre-pay online or pay at pick up, while avoiding expensive third-party fees. Real-time data: Restaurant owners, chefs and managers receive a daily email detailing everything they need to know before doors open, and a shift prep email detailing reservations, VIP guests, and notes for the service ahead. Bluebonnet Barbecue, Melbourne's iconic Texas-style BBQ venue, has been using Lightspeed Restaurant in the initial launch phase. Bluebonnet's Manager, Mikey Buchanan, said the platform gives the business a competitive advantage and the foundations to overcome challenges and provide better experiences for customers and employees alike. We've been looking for a platform like Lightspeed Restaurant for years. The access to real-time insights has given us a deeper, more accurate understanding of our business than we've ever had before. It's incredibly powerful and sophisticated, but also user-friendly, which is so important in a transient industry where staff come and go. Rather than using different systems for different business functions everything is on one system, driving operational efficiencies which benefit our team and, ultimately, our customers. We're passionate about our craft and our customers, and with Lightspeed Restaurant we spend less time working on administration and non-revenue generating tasks and more time delivering the food and experiences that bring people together. The initial launch of Lightspeed Restaurant in Australia follows the recent launch of Lightspeed Payments, an integrated, contactless payments processor that gives hospitality and retail businesses the ability to process customer payments directly from their point-of-sale. About Lightspeed Powering the businesses that are the backbone of the global economy, and used by merchants around the world including Messina, Lion, Momofuku, Five Guys, and Vera Wang, Lightspeed's one-stop commerce platform helps merchants innovate to simplify, scale and provide exceptional customer experiences. Our cloud commerce solution transforms and unifies online and physical operations, multichannel sales, expansion to new locations, global payments, financial solutions and connection to supplier networks. Founded in Montréal, Canada in 2005, Lightspeed is dual-listed on the New York and Toronto Stock Exchange ( NYSE: LSPD) (TSX: LSPD). With teams across North America, Europe and Asia Pacific, the company serves retail, hospitality and golf businesses in over 100 countries.

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Competition for Leisure Guests Heats Up Between Hotels and Short-Term Rentals

AirDNA | November 15, 2022

A new joint report from hospitality data supplier STR and short-term rental analytics provider AirDNA shows that competition between short-term rentals and hotels has accelerated in the fight for leisure guests, with the price gap tightening and rental supply falling behind in urban markets.During the pandemic, the U.S. short-term rental sector used its supply flexibility to recover faster than hotels, especially in coastal and mountain destinations, pushing rentals' market share to a record 17% of total lodging in summer 2020. Hotels retargeted towards leisure guests to reclaim demand, focusing on urban areas, pushing short-term rentals' market share back to below its pre-pandemic trajectory. "During the pandemic, short-term rentals had an advantage over traditional hotels due to consumer perception of better COVID-19 safety, Now in 2022, hotels can compete on price and have claimed demand on key holidays where, pre-pandemic, they typically lost out on leisure travelers." -AirDNA Vice President of Research, Jamie Lane Hotels Lead in Cities In large cities, short-term rental supply contracted dramatically as demand dropped off in 2020, while government subsidies helped to reduce permanent closures of hotels. As urban demand began to recover in 2022, hotels were ready to accommodate travelers, while urban rental supply remains 17% below 2019. With strict regulations limiting short-term rentals in cities like New York and San Francisco, which both lost 25% of their pre-pandemic supply levels, supply is unlikely to fully recover in these areas. "Looking to the future, hotel supply will likely remain strongest in urban and suburban locations, with low development in coastal and rural areas due to higher barriers to entry, where short-term rentals will likely see more opportunity for growth," -STR's Vice President of Analytics Isaac Collazo. A new STR survey of more than 1,000 travelers shows that value for money is an important factor for rental guests, even more than hotel guests. Despite the perception that rentals are cheaper, in 2019, hotels and comparably-sized rentals were priced around the same, except in urban locations. In large cities, hotels were priced 42.9% higher than rentals, but that gap has closed to 26.6% in 2022. Hotels are now offering lower rates than rentals in all location types except urban and coastal resorts, where the difference is 10%. While rentals' market share is highest in coastal and mountain or lake destinations, in urban and suburban locations their share has flattened or declined. Rentals should continue to grow their market share, albeit at a slower pace than pre-pandemic, led by expansion in resorts and small towns less well-served by traditional hotels. About AirDNA AirDNA helps hosts, property managers, and investors succeed in the short-term vacation rental market by turning rental data into actionable analytics. The Denver-based company has tracked the daily performance of 10 million vacation rentals in 120,000 global markets since 2014 to provide real-time market insights. Their range of online and exportable reports offer a solution for everyone in the industry to analyze trends, price rentals, identify new investment opportunities, and benchmark performance. About STR STR provides premium data benchmarking, analytics and marketplace insights for the global hospitality industry. Founded in 1985, STR maintains a presence in 15 countries with a North American headquarters in Hendersonville, Tennessee, an international headquarters in London, and an Asia Pacific headquarters in Singapore. STR was acquired in October 2019 by CoStar Group, Inc. (NASDAQ: CSGP), the leading provider of commercial real estate information, analytics and online marketplaces.

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