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housekeeping Bed Accessories: Creating the ‘wow’ factor for guests

profiles ARRA Accommodation Group succeeds Hyatt Essendon Melbourne’s new ‘golden hotel’

refurbishment Changing perceptions with integrity Curated for use: custom furniture that relates to guests KONE successfully completes lift modernisation Issue 60 | Winter 2017 Aus $16.50 (Inc GST)

Registered by Aust. Post Print Post No. PP424022/2056

the no.1 guide to specialist accommodation industry product & service suppliers

hotels • motels • resorts • apartments • time share • holiday parks • budget • retirement

South Pacific Laundry specialises in the provision of quality linen and supplies for hospitality facilities.

Port Douglas


Coffs Harbour

Adelaide Colac

Warnambool South Pacific Laundry (SPL) has been a provider of commercial laundry and linen services to the hospitality industry in Melbourne for the last 20 years.



Currently, the South Pacific Group is establishing a strong network of modern laundries across Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland, Western Australia and South Australia with plans for several more facilities up the East Coast of Australia in 2017 The relocation of our Sydney operations to a new larger facility in Bankstown together with the relocation of our Brunswick plant to Broadmeadows will establish South Pacific Laundry as the single largest privately owned laundry in Australia and in the Southern Hemisphere.

Contact Robert Teoh National PR & Marketing P: (03) 9388 5300 M: 0421 716 888 Coverage Australia wide

Pricing Information Contact supplier direct Delivery Free daily delivery within 25km city metropolitan areas Minimum Order Contact supplier direct

SPL provides: • A 365 day service to all clientele with a 24 hour turnaround • A leading edge technology in RFID to assist housekeeping and managerial staff in time reduction and efficiency • Dedicated account managers and experienced support staff who are available 7 days a week • A dedicated software design package and centralised billing system enables seamless transactions, paperless and customised reports • Delivery rationalization systems, providing and streamlining efficient delivery routes which will reduce the company’s carbon footprint. • Building of partnerships and sharing benefits with the customers from savings made through its constant laundry process innovations and group purchasing power of linen products. • Dry cleaning, Uniform cleaning services, General building cleaning, Housekeeping services, Dust mat hire and Cleaning services. • Provision and supplying of corporate uniforms/work wears and customised hotel room amenities.

Full Contact Information South Pacific Laundry 9-23 King William St Broadmeadows VIC 3047 P: (03) 9388 5300 F: (03) 9387 2399 E:

*Albury only


B E S P O K E D E S I G N . M A X I M U M I M PA C T. We’ve been at the forefront of some amazing advances in commercial furniture innovation. What seemed impossible years ago – or never even dreamed of – is now what we do every day.

collaborate in turning visionary designs into a world-class ergonomic reality. Working with designers and architects, we thrive on balancing the practical with the extraordinary.

Our creative energy has inspired many of the world’s premier hotel brands to

5PˌOEPVUNPSF DBMM3PC(JMTIFOBOPO 0439 638 151 or email


fd front desk

winter front desk Editor's Desk: Case studies you don’t want to miss

management 06

NOVACANCY 2017: Designed for you – all new accom business expo


Guest Experience: What makes for a bad night at a hotel?




Air Conditioning: It’s getting hot in here... so fix the air conditioning


Air Conditioning: As power prices increase, is in-room air con a financial black hole?




New Amenities: The future has come a long way


ARRA Accommodation Group: Succeed, succeed, succeed with ARRA Accommodation Group

Online Revenue: The changing value of the channel




Hyatt Essendon: Melbourne’s new ‘golden hotel’ an Australian first

Chinese Bookings: 5 ways hotels can to get more online bookings from Chinese guests

Ask Mammy: Wily Irish Mammy’s top housekeeper’s gripes Bed Accessories: Creating a ‘wow factor’ for guests


Star Ratings Takeover: What’s the update on the Star Ratings saga?


Paper Products: Keeping your loo roll squared away


Vacuums: Will new robot vacuum models make suckers of us all?

87 88

Vacuums: Snapshot supplier view

What's Hot: The latest trends in accommodation industry products

safety & security 56


Case Study – Riverside Hotel: KONE successfully completes lift modernisation at Riverside Hotel

61 62

Holiday Park Upgrades: Changing perceptions with integrity


Bedroom Furniture: Gorgeous guestrooms – what’s in and what’s out?

The Accom Management Guide is distributed quarterly to accommodation industry managers and professionals throughout Australia. EDITOR Rosie Clarke STAFF WRITERS

Mandy Clarke Suzy Barry Graham Vercoe


Richard McGill ADVERTISING Tim Svenson Michael Piantoni Dave Wright SERVICE Gavin Bill CONTRIBUTORS

Aimee Ley, Arvo Elias, Doug Kennedy, Graham Vercoe, John Smallwood, JP Robertson, Judy Senn, Justin Steele, Larry Mogelonsky, Lauren Butler, Melissa Kalan and Mitch Huskey. The Accom Management Guide welcomes editorial contributions and images on relevant topics for features, news items or new products. Please email copy to Images should be in high resolution (300dpi) JPEG or TIFF format. Editorial queries should be directed to the editor at (07) 5440 5322.



Keeping Guests Connected: You, me and the USB– “where can we charge our phones?”


Management Rights: The ultimate lifestyle business

NBN: Is NBN coming to you soon?


Accom Properties: Buyers agree, Accom Properties has been well overdue for years

Communication Systems: Clever communicators communicate cleverly?

preferred suppliers

guest facilities 64

Housekeepers: The housekeeping training revolution

Vending Machines: Vender bender

The Accom Management Guide is distributed quarterly to hotel, motel, resort and apartment properties throughout Australia by Resort Publishing, the publishers of leading industry titles and Resort News. The views and images expressed in the Accom Management Guide do not necessarily reflect the views of the publisher. The information contained in the Accom Management Guide is intended to act as a guide only, the publisher, authors and editors expressly disclaim all liability for the results of action taken or not taken on the basis of information contained herein. We recommend professional advice is sought before making important business decisions. ADVERTISING CONDITIONS

The publisher reserves the right to refuse to publish or to republish without any explanation for such action. The publisher, it’s employees and agents will endeavour to place and reproduce advertisements as requested but takes no responsibility for omission, delay, error in transmission, production deficiency, alteration of misplacement. The advertiser must notify the publisher of any errors as soon as they appear, otherwise the publisher accepts no responsibility for republishing such advertisements. If advertising copy does not arrive by the copy deadline the publisher reserves the right to repeat existing material. DISCLAIMER

Any mention of a product, service or supplier in editorial is not indicative of any endorsement by the author, editor or publisher. Although the publisher, editor and authors do all they can to ensure accuracy in all editorial content, readers are advised to factcheck for themselves, any opinion or statement made by a reporter, editor, columnist, contributor, interviewee, supplier or any other entity involved before making judgements or decisions based on the materials contained herein. Resort News, its publisher, editor and staff, is not responsible for and does not accept liability for any damages, defamation or other consequences (including but not limited to revenue and/or profit loss) claimed to have occurred as the result of anything contained within this publication, to the extent permitted by law. Advertisers and Advertising Agents warrant to the publisher that any advertising material placed is in no way an infringement of any copyright or other right and does not breach confidence, is not defamatory, libellous or unlawful, does


The Preferred Supplier Directory

not slander title, does not contain anything obscene or indecent and does not infringe the Consumer Guarantees Act or other laws, regulations or statutes. Moreover, advertisers or advertising agents agree to indemnify the publisher and its’ agents against any claims, demands, proceedings, damages, costs including legal costs or other costs or expenses properly incurred, penalties, judgements, occasioned to the publisher in consequence of any breach of the above warranties. Copyright 2017 © RESORT PUBLISHING. It is an infringement of copyright to reproduce in any way all or part of this publication without the written consent of the publisher. The Accom Management Guide is proudly published by Resort Publishing a division of Multimedia Pty Ltd. ACN 126-017-454. O MM D


Privacy: Privacy? I don't have anything to hide


Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands: Curated for use – custom furniture that relates to guests




Channel Management: A remote control for your booking channels

refurbishment 24

Hotel Design: Is there F&B life for Australian hotels beyond the breakfast buffet?


what's hot 22

food & beverage 66



– refresh your guest offering without leaving bumps in the road

energy & resources




Office Address: 5/53 Gateway Drive, Noosaville, Qld 4566 Postal Address: PO Box 1080, Noosaville BC, Qld 4566 Phone: (07) 5440 5322 Fax: (07) 5604 1680 Email: Key - For easy perusal Commercially funded supplier profile or supplier case study

Supplier information or content

Suppliers share their views in one-off, topical pieces

General editorial. Case studies and features may cite or quote suppliers, please be aware that we have a strict ‘no commercial content’ guideline for all magazine editorial, so this is not part of any commercially funded advertorial but may be included as relevant opinion. Happy reading!


front desk fd Editor’s Note:

Case studies you don’t want to miss WELCOME BACK TO AMG, AUSTRALIA! I’M INCREDIBLY EXCITED THIS ISSUE BECAUSE I’VE JUST RETURNED FROM A VISIT TO FOUR POINTS SHERATON IN MELBOURNE WHERE I WAS ABLE TO EXPERIENCE THE INTERIOR DESIGN FIRST-HAND FOR OUR EPIC CASE STUDY. Some of the highlights for me included talking to artist Al Stark after gazing at his incredible mural, receiving a guided tour of the property from general manager Stephen Ferringo himself, and sampling some first-class Japanese cuisine at the edgily decked out Kisume restaurant in the city. I have returned with plenty of inspiration to share with you all. One column I’m excited to announce will be a regular AMG addition from now on, is the one and only Wily Irish Mammy! You might have seen her on before: she’s a no-nonsense housekeeper with a quirky Celtic turn of phrase and a love of homegrown, professional housework. Flick over to find out what the sassiest housekeeper in the land has to say about annoying guest habits. You’ll also pick up a few choice Irish sayings, like ‘stop acting the maggot’. Spoiler alert: it doesn’t take much to ruin Mammy’s day! You can write in to ask her for cleaning tips or to solve awkward housekeeping problems. She’ll have a craic but she won’t judge.


Rosie Clarke Editor, Accom Management Guide Elsewhere, we have a variety of stories delving into the beauty, challenge and refurb potential of the Australian holiday park. Famed for adventure and ageless fun, this country is primed for holiday park tourism and the holiday parks themselves agree. Not only do we have some case studies and profiles talking to managers and refurb suppliers, but we have a helpful guide to upgrading as well. Speaking of upgrades, our refurbishment section this issue covers a wide range of renovation types from bedroom furniture to our epic case study on Ramler’s results at Four Points Sheraton in Melbourne. We also dive into channel management this issue, looking at what you need to know and how you can separate out what’s relevant to your needs. Guestroom furniture; wow-factor beds; reducing energy bills; a brief history of toilet tissue and shampoo? We have it all for you this quarter, and so much more. Thank you for your continued readership and, as always, please enjoy your copy of AMG. Accom Management Guide welcomes editorial contributions and images on relevant topics for features, news items or new products. Please email copy to: Images should be in high resolution (300dpi) JPEG.



m management NOVACANCY 2017:


DISCOVER. LEARN. CONNECT. SOURCE THE LATEST INNOVATIONS Bringing together over 150 hand-picked suppliers showcasing quality products and services across the entire hospitality supply chain - from check-in to rooms to guest experiences. NOVACANCY is the complete one-stop destination for everything needed to manage, operate, promote, design and refurbish a winning accommodation business.

Book your free ticket now at using the code AMG17. It is open to owners, operators, franchisees, general managers and department heads of existing accommodation businesses, as well as investors, developers, designers, architects and purchasing agents for new projects. Now a ‘national tradeshow for the accommodation industry’, this 2017 expo will mark a complete reinvention of what was previously the NOVACANCY accom industry conference. This year, the event has been acquired by exhibition organiser National Media and the group has been working hard to put together the most useful and impressive industry tradeshow possible.

ENHANCE YOUR KNOWLEDGE NOVACANCY is the only event to provide 20+ hours of free, independent, high quality and useful education for accommodation providers. Offering a wide range of knowledge, these practical and valuable sessions are hosted across themed, curated stages located throughout the exhibition.

It will be home to a collection of more than 150 product and service providers from across the hotel supply chain. Together with expert insight from a seminar programme and multiple networking opportunities, NOVACANCY plans to become the premier destination for hoteliers and other hospitality industry professionals who are committed to improving their business. As of March 2017, TAA reported 228 hotel projects in the pipeline, adding more than 34,700 new rooms to the market, and growing accommodation stock 30 percent between now and 2022. Combining education, inspiration, networking connections and product and services info, NOVACANCY will be tackling industry concerns and competitive insights. All 150 suppliers that will be present have been hand-picked for quality and innovation so that you can make informed comparisons across the marketplace. Accom providers will receive more than 20 hours of free, independent education, in practical sessions hosted across themed, curated stages around the exhibition.

NETWORK WITH YOUR COMMUNITY Bringing together the largest gathering of accommodation industry professionals from across Australia and throughout the Oceanic region, NOVACANCY is the ideal event to meet new contacts and build your business relationships.

Highlights to pique your interest There are four things in particular that we know you will be excited about. 1.

The Hospitality Lounge – This will mark the central networking hub of the event. It’s a place you can reconnect with peers, find new allies and work the room for fresh ideas about how to give your accommodation business the right edge.


The Boutique Experience – This will be a very popular feature of the expo, with quirky lifestyle accom providers gaining more and more traction across the sector. Design and product innovation for all types of property, whether high-end luxury or comfort, will be on display here.


HotelTech Zone – This part of the two-day event will introduce attendees to the cutting-edge tech advances that are pushing the sector into the future. From data analytics and access control, to in-room guest technology and customer loyalty. Today, technology touches on every aspect of accommodation life.


Business Seminars – Make the most out of the (more than) 30 free seminars, which will be delivered by top-level professionals around the country. Future trends, revenue optimisation and operational excellence will all be topics of discussion, along with many more.

Types of accommodation that will be central to the expo: • • • • • • •

Independent boutique hotels Luxury hotels and resorts Pubs with rooms Serviced apartments Motels and motor-inns Upmarket B&Bs Spas and wellness retreats

The tradeshow has several takeaways it believes accom providers should have in the bag by the time they leave the expo. Those takeaways include: knowing how to increase profitability and day-to-day efficiency, the ability to identify key trends and therefore stay ahead of the competition, an understanding of how to maximise new ideas and training opportunities, plenty of headway in growing an industry network to establish strong business relationships.



For a decade, NOVACANCY hosted more than 3000 industry execs and now that it’s been rehomed, reimagined, and reinvigorated, it’s time to add your voice to the conversation.


m management

RMS signs a deal with top end hospitality chain in Sri Lanka RMS, the fastest growing provider of cloud Property Management Solutions worldwide, signs a deal with top end hospitality chain in Sri Lanka – Resplendent Ceylon (Dilmah Tea) for all Resplendent Ceylon prestigious sites commencing with group’s portfolio of luxurious Sri Lankan properties. Paul Blahuta, President Global Sales at RMS highlighted “RMS is delighted to receive the endorsement of another premium hospitality provider in Resplendent Ceylon for our PMS and POS solution. This further marks our emergence as the preeminent and fastest growing cloud solution in the hotel chain sector.” “Our ability to partner with and tune our true cloud solution to the needs of our customers and to turn-key their deployment continues

About Resplendent Ceylon Resplendent Ceylon is the leisure division of Dilmah, the family owned tea-maker committed to ethical tea production, which prides itself in sharing their country with visitors from abroad. Malik Fernando, Managing Director Resplendent Ceylon says, “We formed a company, Resplendent Ceylon that will develop and manage a circuit of unique resorts and to gain traction across the globe. We look forward to working with these truly magnificent properties in stunning locations across Sri Lanka together with the entire Resplendent team.” He added, “We are both committed to delivering unique and wonderfully local experiences for their guests at these unique five-star hospitality offerings. RMS as the cloud solution engine for Resplendent Ceylon will revolutionise the business through mobile capability, access to complimentary web based services and the ability

after extensive research on the capability of RMS, we have engaged RMS as the cloud Property Management System provider for our entire portfolio of exclusive resorts. As our goal is to offer the curious traveler a range of experiences linked to Sri Lanka’s history, culture and nature. We feel RMS has both the capability and the people to grow our business moving forward.”

of Resplendent to access their guest information across the group from a single point. This will help the team better understand their guests’ needs, to enhance their guest offerings and to communicate these more effectively and timely.”

About RMS RMS has over 30 years’ experience in the hospitality industry with over 5,000 sites across the globe in 25 countries. Headquartered in Melbourne, Australia with offices across the globe, RMS continues to grow expanding

its hotel chain customer base with true, HTML5 Property and Reservations Management cloud services for the hospitality sector. Paul Blahuta, President Global Sales at RMS says, “We are delighted to have been chosen by Resplendent Ceylon as the preferred PMS Cloud and POS solutions provider for the entire group.” More information about Resplendent Ceylon can be found at www. For information about RMS 9+ Cloud PMS Solutions, go to

The longest swimming pool in Sri Lanka at the Sigiriya Resort. Image courtesy Resplendent Ceylon.




management m supplier profile INNOVA GROUP

Power Up Your Conference Desks Even though electronic devices have become absolute essentials in our working life, conference tables have been slow to catch up and offer no ability to simply charge these devices throughout a meeting. Thanks to Innova Group that’s all about to change! How many conferences have you been too and noticed a long line up of various devises sitting against the walls being charged at every available power point? From time to time the various owners would make their way to the device hoping that it had been charged enough to continue it’s use through the conference. Today, Innova Group has ended that scenario! Thanks to their new range of Tech Tables, the V240 PCD (Powered Conference Desk) and the USB PCD allow you guests to charge their devices at the desk they are sitting at – uninterrupted! Even your overseas guests are catered for with an international power supply. Tables are connected to each other minimising the use of wall sockets and if power-boards are required they are accessed via the desk top while still being hidden from view. Naked contemporary flip top tables on casters can be flipped from either side with a simple handle can now accommodate all this new technology. They roll across the floor for easy set up and the actual table legs themselves are designed to accommodate being plugged directly into your power supply. It’s that easy.


Bring your conference room into the 21st Century by powering up your tables offering unprecedented flexibility to your customers. Talk to Innova Group today. Innova Group - always innovating Call 1800 33 611, email or visit



m management Guest Experience:

What makes for a bad night at a hotel? A POOR HOTEL EXPERIENCE IS NO LAUGHING MATTER BUT A NEW SURVEY TURNED UP SOME NOTABLE WRITE-IN RESPONSES HIGHLIGHTING THE CAUSE OF SOME VERY BAD NIGHTS. These include: a skunk outside; a window falling out; hordes of roaches; police searching for someone in the hotel; bats; the feeling of being in a brothel; padlocks on the outside of the doors; unsavoury patrons; and rooms being switched while at dinner. A surprising nine percent of writein responders claim to have had a bad night because their room was haunted. Private research company Qualtrics recently undertook this survey, questioning over 1000 hotel guests to determine which factors most improved or diminished their hotel stay, and the results might surprise you. According to Bill Murray, Qualtrics managing director Asia Pacific and Japan, “66 percent of respondents said dirty rooms are the main cause of negative hotel experiences, while 65 percent said that wifi helped make a hotel experience more positive.” Conducted in April 2017, the survey determined that wifi is highly linked to a positive hotel experience, with guests valuing free internet access over a quiet room, free parking and even free breakfast. However, this doesn’t mean guests don’t value a good deal, with the feeling of overpaying being another cause for a negative hotel experience. 82 percent of guests checking out think that they overpaid for their stay, and guests who stay in a five-star hotel are four times more likely to feel this way. Negative experiences can often lead to poor online reviews, but research shows that guests are more likely to request a room-change or complain to the manager about a problem than they are to post a negative review about the problem. This said, the survey also showed that guest reviews expose the hotels that provide poor experiences and reward hotels that



do better. Sixty-seven percent of guests said that they read guest ratings and reviews when deciding which hotel to stay in, while 57 percent searched hotel websites and 43 percent got recommendations from friends and family. Hotel amenities are obviously important to guests, with many saying that onsite dining and parking are the most important hotel amenities. Eightysix percent of guests think that onsite restaurants are important, while 83 percent value parking and 68 percent value a pool and spa. The least important hotel amenities include a business office, gym and onsite bar, with men being 71 percent more likely than women to think that an onsite bar is of importance. In terms of hotel rooms, a first impression is of upmost importance, with the survey indicating that the cleanliness, room size and smell need to be right the moment guests arrive. 45 percent of guests said that cleanliness is the first thing they notice upon entering a hotel room, with 20 percent paying attention to room size, 17 percent to smell, five percent to bed quality and another five percent to the view. Service to rooms, at reception desks or in terms of hotel transportation can also heavily impact a guest’s impression of a hotel, whether it’s in room, at the reception desk or in hotel transportation. The Qualtrics survey indicates that most guests are pragmatic in the services they need at a hotel and value practical, not premium, services. When asked what hotel services are most important, the highest ranked responses included room service, transportation shuttle and a concierge, while the least valued services included valet parking, the turndown service and spa services. With 57 percent of guests attributing unfriendly employees to their negative experience, staff training is also key to hotel success and happy guests. Consider the level of service you offer, the expectations of your guests, and focus on areas of importance to give guests the best possible experience. By Lauren Butler, Junior Industry Reporter



A GOOD N I G H T 'S REST The only beds in Australia recommended by the ICA.

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p profiles ARRA Accommodation Group:

Succeed, succeed, succeed with ARRA Accommodation Group SINCE ITS FORMATION IN 2009, THE ARRA ACCOMMODATION GROUP HAS BEEN GROWING FROM STRENGTH TO STRENGTH. Birthed out of the expansion of the Budget Motel Chain to include 3.5-star and four-star-plus options, there are now three leading brand names, all providing excellence in accommodation for a diverse range of travellers. The Budget motel chain provides good, clean comfortable accommodation at affordable rates. This brand is widely known and well respected by cost-conscious travellers throughout all Australian states and territories and across both islands of New Zealand. The next tier is Orbit Inns, which offers larger rooms and a series of affordable luxuries, such as room service and spa-baths. The final tier, Paragon Hotels, offers stylish, high quality accommodation ideal for the corporate market and discerning travellers. This expansion of the Budget Motel Chain to become ARRA Accommodation Group means that they can satisfy all types of travellers, from the budget-conscious right through to the executive. Their range of accommodation is suitable for business trips, family holidays and seniors enjoying their retirement, with room prices starting at less than $90 per night. All ARRA properties are independently owned and operated and are provided with excellent support from the head office team.

ARRA ARRA Accommodation Group has a long-established standard in affordable accommodation. At a time when the discerning traveller demands good value and exceptional service, ARRA provides a unique balance of attractive aesthetics and moderate pricing. With properties found in the smallest country towns through to the largest cities, so no matter where you are in Australia or New Zealand, ARRA



Accommodation Group has a motel for you and your family to enjoy. Many of the member properties within ARRA are smaller, owneroperated motels with an average size of 15 units. These businesses are often family-run, and located in all regional areas of Australia and New Zealand. Larger motels located in the capital cities and metropolitan areas will also see many benefits by becoming a member. Some of the benefits member properties receive by being a member of the ARRA Accommodation Group include the right to use the internationally recognised and registered Budget, Orbit or Paragon trademark name and logos, a listing in the ARRA Accommodation Guide, with annual worldwide circulation in excess of 65,000 copies, and access to the UseROSS Channel Management system. The ARRA Accommodation Group is arguably the lowest cost referral chain in Australia. For an independent motelier to market their motel on a national and international scale equal to what is offered to a member of the ARRA Accommodation Group would be extremely difficult. ARRA Accommodation Group understands the importance of embracing the latest technologies to assist with marketing. At the forefront is a website that caters to all ARRA brands. It’s ever-evolving website will continue to form an important part of the ARRA marketing strategy. The website provides detailed information on every member property, including telephone numbers, email addresses, website links to member home pages and the ability for users to book online. The ARRA website is proving very popular and regularly attracts over four thousand visitors per month. Member properties can participate in selling their own motel rooms via the website with the knowledge they are instantly confirmed for guests and payment has been secured. As well as selling rooms on the ARRA website, members can also utilise the ARRA Accommodation Group’s channel manager UseROSS. The channel manager allows member properties to list inventory on OTA’s, including, Expzedia, Agoda, etc., with ease, saving time and money.


p profiles ARRA Accommodation Group:


Orbit Inns

The Budget Motel Chain was established in 1978 and is a not-for-profit organisation, run by its members, for its members. The basic philosophy; to offer clean, comfortable, affordable accommodation to the Australian market.

The Orbit Inns brand was launched in February 2009, providing the final piece to the newly formed ARRA Accommodation Group. Since its inception, the new brand has created a lot of excitement and interest from the accommodation industry and attracted several new properties.

In 2003, the Budget Motel Chain celebrated not only its 25th birthday but also its success as a major player in the accommodation industry. October 2007 saw the Budget Motel Chain launch the brand Paragon Hotels, to cater for the four to five-star rating properties. A year later, to celebrate its 30 years of servicing the travelling public, the group headed back to Canberra to celebrate where it all began. Over 39 years, the Budget Motel Chain earned credibility in the accommodation industry as being a reputable and reliable accommodation referral chain. Before becoming a Budget motel, properties have to pass a list of criteria to determine their market position and compatibility with the brand.

Orbit Inns provide you with “a space to relax”. This slogan exemplifies the group’s property type and customer; spacious luxury and value for money. Providing pay television, a queen or king-size bed in every room and extra special amenities, such as spa baths and room service, Orbit Inns caters for the business or holiday client. Like Budget, before becoming an Orbit Inn, properties have to pass a list of criteria to determine their market position and compatibility with the brand. These criteria include all the qualities that clientele booking a midrange style property are looking for, such as; •

Rooms serviced daily

These criteria include:

Reverse cycle air conditioner

• • • • • • •

Guest amenities, including Hair dryer, tissues, shampoo and conditioner

A bed of queen-size or greater

Adequate lighting including reading lights for the main bed

Table or bench space and chairs

At least one comfort chair

Luggage rack

Iron and ironing board

Wifi available for guest-use

Guest laundry facility or service

Each member property of Orbit Inns must be a minimum of 3.5-star rating as assigned by AAA Tourism or Qualmark (NZ) or equivalent assessment as determined by ARRA.

Comfortable beds with adequate furnishings Tea/coffee making facilities Television with a remote control Refrigerator Ensuite bathroom Rooms serviced daily Heating/cooling as appropriate

Many Budget motels have much more than the usual minimum requirements. Additional features at some properties include swimming pools, barbeque areas, playgrounds, tennis courts, tour facilities, restaurants and bars, laundry facilities, and recreation rooms. The longstanding and continuing philosophy of providing the travelling public with good, clean, comfortable accommodation at an affordable price has been the hallmark of their success. ARRA are keen to attract genuine business for its member properties by offering a value for money approach to the travelling public.


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WƌĞĨĞƌƌĞĚ^ƵƉƉůŝĞƌƚŽZZǁŝƚŚ ĂůĂƌŐĞŶƵŵďĞƌŽĨƉƌŽƉĞƌƟĞƐ ĐƵƌƌĞŶƚůLJĞŶũŽLJŝŶŐƚŚĞĞĂƐĞ ĂŶĚƐŝŵƉůŝĐŝƚLJ͘ contact: 03 9728 1544 email:



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profiles p

Paragon Hotels Launched in 2007 as the up-market alternative for accommodation throughout Australia and New Zealand, the philosophy of Paragon is quite simple: “properties that exceed expectation of service and quality”. Like the other two brands, before becoming a Paragon branded property, properties have to pass a detailed list of criteria to determine their market position and compatibility with the brand. These criteria include: •

Preferred onsite restaurant and/or chargeback facility available

Fully cooked breakfast available daily on the premises, to guest units, or in the immediate vicinity

A bed of queen-size or larger

Face washers, hand towel, bath mat and towel(s)

Guest amenities, including Hair dryer, tissues, shampoo and conditioner

River Country Inn

Wifi for guest-use

Guest laundry facility or service

Since its inception, the ARRA Accommodation Group has continued to grow from strength to strength. Their constant innovation ensures that their members are at the forefront of the accommodation industry. The UseROSS Channel Management System has been a real game changer for ARRA members, freeing up their time to focus on the running and marketing of their businesses. Other recent innovations include the Payment Deposit System, enabling members to select the amount or percentage of the total booking price to be collected from the guest at the time of booking. This allows the member to receive a secure deposit for a future booking without the guest incurring the full cost at time of booking. For further information on becoming a member property of the ARRA Accommodation Group, please contact ARRA’s sales manager Graeme Pierce on 0437355583 or by email








p profiles Hyatt Essendon:

Melbourne’s new ‘golden hotel’ an Australian first MELBOURNE’S NORTH WEST HAS EXPERIENCED RAPID DEVELOPMENT OVER RECENT YEARS, WITH ITS MOST RECENT ADDITION BEING AN EXCITING AUSTRALIAN FIRST. On June 15, the country’s first Hyatt Place hotel opened in Essendon Fields, with guests already raving about its location, service and style. Positioned between Tullamarine Airport and the city’s widespread business district, the newly opened, eight-story hotel is well placed for leisure or business travel. It sits adjacent, but separate, to the Australian



Event Centre (TAEC), making it a clear hotel of choice for delegates or guests at local conferences and events, and offers 166 spacious guestrooms, as well as meeting spaces, a coffee and cocktail bar, a free continental breakfast, complimentary wifi, and a 24-hour StayFit gym. With management boasting raving reviews, accomnews spent an evening at the hotel to experience all aspects of its service and style. As I walked through the glass revolving doors, I must admit that I was pleasantly surprised by the lobby’s fullness, with numerous guests contentedly lounging and working in the warm and welcoming communal space, just days after opening.


profiles p

Vintech Systems offers seamless locking solution The newly built 166 guestroom hotel, Hyatt Place Melbourne, Essendon Fields chose accommodation industry security specialist Vintech Systems to supply SAFLOK Quantum RFID locks. Vintech Systems's director of sales Daryl Brett explained: “The SAFLOK lock was chosen not only for its attractive aesthetics but also for the cutting edge features it can provide the hotel. Their SAFLOK locks are Zigbee Messenger online-ready and fully configured for upgrades to technologies such as BLE (Bluetooth low energy). This is commendable future planning for a new hotel. “Working with DormaKaba North America, we were able to manufacture, import, supply, install and commission the

SAFLOK locks to provide the turnkey solution within the planned schedule. The SAFLOK locking system enables the property to offer their guests a quick, easy and secure checkin with access to the carpark, the lifts and their guestroom

with the same RFID card for the duration of their stay.

serve the same function as their keycard does today.

“With a Zigbee Prostack Messenger upgrade, all locks will be online with real-time reporting. With upgrade to BLE technologies in the future, a guest's mobile phone will

“It's exciting to be in the forefront of technological improvements in our industry and to witness firsthand the benefit these have for guests and Hoteliers.”

Vintech Systems proudly supplied the perfect Saflok locking system to Hyatt Place Essendon Fields “The Most Comprehensive Range”

Vintech Systems proudly supports over 1500 existing Hotels & Accommodation Facilities throughout Australia, and is diligent in maintaining this position. We pride ourselves on offering YOU and your properties the most comprehensive range of internationally reputable hospitality branded Electronic Locks, Digital Safes, Energy Efficient Minibars and Room Automation.






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p profiles Hyatt Essendon:

From 2006, we have opened 284 Hyatt Places,” Norman shared. Having worked for the overarching Hyatt brand for over 10 years in various locations across Australia, the new brand and management opportunity is an exciting step for Norman. He is clearly enthusiastic about the hotel’s well thought out offerings and sleek design. According to Norman Khan, general manager of the Hyatt Place, Essendon Fields, this has been a common sight over recent weeks. “I’ve been most excited about the response we have received from guests, and I’m excited to bring the Hyatt Place brand into the Australian market. Guest reactions have been very positive, mainly surrounding comfort, location, service and style,” Norman told accomnews. The Hyatt Place brand launched in 2006, inspired by the 24/7 lifestyle of multitasking travellers. It aims to combine style with hospitality, featuring spacious guestrooms and inviting communal spaces. “So far, the Hyatt Place brand has been expanding rapidly in the world.



The Hyatt Place hasn’t spared any detail on its finishing touches. The design is clean and corporate, yet exudes a cosy feel. As a Melbourne resident, I have driven past the hotel at various stages of development on numerous occasions, often remarking about its striking appearance. Located in a development precinct on Melbourne’s bustling Tullamarine Freeway, over 100,000 cars drive past the hotel each day. I can’t help but imagine that many a conversation has been directed towards the exterior’s metallic finishes and the floor-to-ceiling glass windows that feature in each room. The Hyatt Place recently shared that an eight-yearold guest had excitedly referred to the structure as the “golden hotel”, which I find to be quite an apt description.


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The country’s first Hyatt Place hotel uses Diversey Care cleaning and hygiene solutions Diversey Care is a global provider of professional cleaning and hygiene solutions, and supplier of Suma kitchen hygiene range and J-Fill housekeeping products for the kitchen and housekeeping departments of the Hyatt property.

department managers.”

“Our solutions aim to deliver increased productivity and assist the Hyatt with creating a great guest experience.” William Yuo, Diversey Care account executive explained: “Our regular site visits to review product performance, deliver staff training and to assist with troubleshooting are highly valued by the site and

He added: “We are the leading provider of smart, sustainable solutions for cleaning and hygiene. Through the integration of new technologyenabled services and systems, our solutions drive increased productivity, food safety and infection prevention to ultimately enhance the end-user experience.”

William said: “The property seem happy with the outcome Diversey Care has delivered. As a result, we have been invited to meet with them to discuss another venture where they require kitchen cleaning solutions.”

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p profiles Hyatt Essendon:

Upon entering the modern lobby, I was met with warm tones, wooden finishes and an open fireplace. With 24/7 front desk assistance, there was always a friendly face to be found for any requests I had. “Location is a standout, but more so for me, it’s the lobby space. It’s cosy, warm, and the colour scheme is very relaxed and non-intimidating. We’ve designed something that caters to everyone, with the best of both comfort and style,” he said. Check-in was a smooth experience, with a colourful key card granting access to the 24-hour StayFit gym and a spacious fifth floor room. As the mirrored and carpeted lift rose to the fifth floor, I was greeted with textured wallpaper and tasteful sculptural art hanging from a tall feature wall. The long, slightly curved hallways lead to floor-to-ceiling glass windows, providing striking views of the city and freeway lights at one end, and a clear view to Victoria’s stunning Macedon Ranges at the other. With a free shuttle providing easy access to Melbourne Airport, and Essendon Airport just metres from the hotel, I must confess that I had expected to enter a stock-standard ‘airport hotel’ room, with basic room amenities and a boxy aesthetic. Instead, I entered a roomy space, with a high ceiling and intuitive layout. “Airport hotels have that ‘airport feel’, which travellers don’t like,” Norman said. He continued to explain that Hyatt Place was designed to be easily accessible to local airports, while offering the comfort of a city hotel. “City hotels are too far, and cost too much with tolls, parking and time. Anyone looking to do business in this area can enjoy a relaxing environment within a state-of-the-art facility.” Norman revealed that the rooms were designed to suit a range of travellers’ needs. For the business traveller, there is a large workable desk space, fit with a desk lamp and basic Hyatt-branded stationary supplies. A comfortable lounge sits in one corner, facing a large 42-inch flat screen television, making it a perfect place to sit back and relax. The king-size bed, made up with crisp white linen, features a Hyatt exclusive mattress, which lives up to its reputation for comfort. “This brand really puts guests in control,” he explained. “The rooms are designed so guests can comfortably work, and all rooms come with a cosy corner sofa that can be turned into a pull-out bed if needed.” For me, and no doubt others, the small details were what really



distinguished the spacious room and adjoining ensuite. The shower featured a rain-shower head, a second detachable head, as well as recess LED lighting and shelving. The bathroom also included a mirror that spanned the length of one wall, and an abundance of Barney Kenet bath products. The bedroom’s brown leather bedhead, together with Bluetooth-capable alarm clock and easily accessible power points and USB slots, all demonstrated that the designers were sympathetic to the needs and desires of the modern traveller. The room also featured a number of helpful signs and stickers, reading: “Did you forget something? Contact the gallery host for a menu of odds and ends you can buy, borrow, or enjoy for free.” For those who value a good breakfast to start the morning, a generous gallery kitchen breakfast is available at no extra cost. Hot breakfast items, fresh fruit, steel-cut oatmeal, Greek Chobani yogurts and fresh pastries are available until 10:30 in the open plan lobby, which doubles as a casual dining and lounge area. While this space is currently the only place for guests to enjoy a drink or meal, an adjoining restaurant, Mr McCracken, is set to open in the near future. The restaurant and bar is expected to feature a modern design, industrial touches, regular live music and a roaring open fireplace. The much-anticipated menu will showcase artisan products from King Island, Flinders Island and Merimbula, flown directly into Essendon Airport on a daily basis. I asked Norman how he would describe the hotel, and I believe our feelings are well aligned. While the Hyatt Place is uncomplicated and somewhat casual, the joint venture between Fox Group Holdings and Beck Corporation is also reminiscent of a luxurious and expensive hotel. “If I could explain it in a few words, I would say seamless, simple, straightforward and stylish,” he said. Leaving the hotel, it occurred to me that the Hyatt Place brand fits well within the Australian landscape, both as a physical structure and a business concept. Fit for a vast variety of travellers, it’s no wonder that the hotel’s biggest challenge to-date has been keeping up with demand. “There are simply no other hotels in the area of this calibre,” Norman concluded. ■ By Lauren Butler, Junior Industry Reporter


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interTouch provide innovative tech solutions at Hyatt Place Melbourne The technology provided to this hotel aims to seamlessly connect guests across platforms and devices by transforming the way hotels connect with guests and keep guests connected. Victor Khong, interTouch’s sales director for SPAC, explained: “Our flagship product - FREEDOM Internet, a HSIA solution - and our feature-rich, in-room entertainment solution FREEDOM Entertainment provide guests of Hyatt Place Melbourne with fast, secure, wired and wireless internet throughout the hotel as well as an interactive in-room entertainment portal through which they can watch the

latest movies and be informed on new hotel promotions. “FREEDOM Internet, designed specifically for hotels and their guests, interfaces with most hotel property management systems and features bandwidth management capability that enables hotels to deliver a consistent guest experience across chains. “FREEDOM Entertainment has a customisable range of communication and information services, such as guest welcome messages, express check-out features, and guest surveys. In a world obsessed with BYOC, subscription network services, and numerous file sharing platforms, guests may

also choose to stream their choice of entertainment from their phone, tablet or laptop to the in-room TV. “Setting up a high-performance network is

just the start. The interTouch solution is specifically designed to make the guest experience seamless, personalised and accessible.”

When Guest Experience Matters Hotels need an IT infrastructure that is intrinsic to their brand with engaging solutions that deliver the guest experience they are looking for today while anticipating what may come tomorrow. Connect



interTouch delivers reliable and secure wired and wireless broadband connectivity services, multi-media services, interactive television with content streaming from mobile devices, and managed network solutions. As a leading hotel service provider, our total technology solution, network monitoring, and comprehensive customer support offer international hoteliers the competitive edge needed to attract increasingly tech-savvy travelers who want connectivity as well as interactivity at their fingertips. T +61 2 9313 0400 E Unit 8 G/F Waterloo Business Park 44-48 O’Dea Avenue Waterloo NSW 2017 Australia



f y d n a d l o o c o l approved e v r a m n e e k t u o t s u j d n a m h groovy inde g u o s t n e c e r r a l u p o p y h c a e b a neat nifty p f l o o c e t u n i m e h t o t p u y super trendRENDS IN ACCOMMODATION INDUSTRY PRODUCTS THE LATEST T

INSURE THE VALUE OF YOUR BEDS WITH ALLERZIP® The cost of insuring one of your most important investments is so inexpensive. Allerzip® Mattress and Pillow Protectors with BugLock® will protect your establishment’s mattresses and pillows from spills and stains, including perspiration, bodily fluids, and blood stains. Allerzip® also provides protection against airborne allergens caused by dust mites, bacteria, and mould as well as additional bite protection and water proofing as provided by the Miracle Layer™. Also fully encased providing an effective Fit’N’Forget™ barrier against bed bug infection. Less time spent is addressing bedding, thereby reducing labour costs and insuring the lifetime value of your beds. Available in a range of sizes – Single, Extra Long Single, King Single, Double and King.

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COLD AS ICE Chillax and let the ice-cold Weatherdon stainless-steel Nero fridge and freezer keep your guests’ goodies cool. Chill-seekers will melt with the bonus chiller where even the drips have their own tray. When only an icy coldie will do temperatures can dip to zero degrees and sploshers will appreciate moving the dial to ten degrees. Secret-stashes are safely under lock and key and midnight snackers will appreciate the interior light keeps evening eats discreet. Features include:Compressor style with a 115L fridge and 10L freezer, Temperature range 0°C to +10°C, Brushed stainless steel door, Powder coated black metal body, 2 adjustable shelves, crisper and interior light, With key lock, 2 Year Warranty, Size: 490 W x 560 D x 840 H mm, SAA Approved

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FIRST IMPRESSIONS COUNT Initial impressions can mean everything to your guests and at Jason Commercial we recognise this is an important step in creating a welcoming environment for each, and every guest. We are introducing a new decorator range to our extensive range of commercial bedding in time for spring. Our ‘Regency’ collection is a range of coordinating patterned and plain bed runners and cushions designed to complement any suite or hotel room. Pre-order yours now and use the code ACCOMVIC when checking out to receive 20% off your order. Valid until September 30, not available in conjunction with any other offer.

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what's hot wh GO DELUXE WITH LIVI’S SOFT TOUCH IMPRESSA® BATHROOM & TISSUE RANGE A luxurious range of stylish, cubed facial tissue and soft embossed toilet paper, the Impressa range by Livi® is purpose-made to for a lasting, personal impression when it counts. The delicately embossed toilet rolls are available in 400 sheet and 225 sheet variations. Each roll is made from highest quality tissue paper and is subtly scentePd on the core to create an inviting environment for users. The 225 sheet roll boasts 3ply thickness for extra strength and absorbency while the 400 sheet enables longer lasting use for higher traffic environments. These luxurious toilet tissues are complemented by a 3ply shea butter lotioned facial tissue which is available in a space saving cube pack of 65 sheets. The Livi® range of tissue products are all PEFC certified, guaranteeing environmentally responsible purchasing. Ask for Livi® today!

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THE FUTURE OF PHONE CHARGING Consumer technology changes quickly, and the lodging industry often struggles to keep pace. With the introduction of Kube Systems’ new KS Clock™ that is about to change. Featuring built-in Apple ® Lightning, Apple ® 30-pin and Micro USB fl ip out cables suitable for Androids, Blackberrys and virtually every smart phone and tablet on the market, this compact unit offers unbeatable versatility and modern styling. With built-in Bluetooth Music Streaming and an intuitive alarm clock, KS Clock™ is the perfect bedside companion.

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UNIQUE AND MEMORABLE ARTWORK INTEREL ROOM AUTOMATION INTEREL is the leading solution provider of integrated guestroom control and energy management systems for the hospitality industry. Interel can automate any feature in the guest room such as airconditioning, lighting control, blinds or curtains as well as integrate with a wide range of hospitality systems. It has the capacity to ensure all hotel amenities like room service, "Make Up Room" requirements and "Do Not Disturb" features are communicated directly to their respective departments, improving time usage for maintenance and services, as well as improving guest experience, operational efficiency and sustainability. With usability and guest experience as core design principles, INTEREL"s Guest Room Management System provides both innovative and energy efficient controls of lighting and climate. Vintech is proud to add INTEREL to its stable of quality products.

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Since Bluethumb came onto the scene, giving guests a unique and memorable hotel experience has never been easier, thanks to their range of original Australian art. As Australia’s largest online art gallery, Bluethumb boasts over 50,000 artworks from just $99, and is easy to navigate across categories like Aboriginal art, Abstracts and Landscapes. Best of all, from their free art advisory service, to free shipping and free 7-day returns, Bluethumb makes the entire process efficient, affordable and enjoyable. For 10% off first purchase visit the website below.

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r refurbishment Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands:

Curated for use: custom furniture that relates to guests THERE’S A MAGICAL THING THAT HAPPENS WHEN THE RIGHT PEOPLE SHARE A VISION. It takes more than an idea to innovate, more than a demand to design and more than a promise to produce truly essential work. What it actually takes, is passionate working relationships; and that’s exactly what Ramler International strives for when it takes on new projects. I could see this was the case, plain as day, in the recent Ramler collaboration at Melbourne’s newest April 2017 hotel, Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands. As editor of AMG, I visited the property not long after opening to experience the work achieved there firsthand. What stood out straight away was the strength of the ongoing relationship between Ramler’s core team and Four Points’ management, as well as the engaging relationship between incoming guests and the furniture design. It was a fascinating case to study, so I can only imagine how incredible it was to work on from beginning to end. The project itself took two years of designing, prototyping and large-scale producing but, as account manager Rob Gilshenan cheerfully shared with me, the relationship between Ramler’s team and others involved in the project continues indefinitely. In this case, that includes overseas owner Hiap Hoe, project manager Sinclair Brook, interior designer DKO and project builder Probuild. The ongoing communication allows them to see their shared vision put in practice: something that must provide incredibly valuable insight.


In the lobby area, business guests lounged squarely on tall-backed armchairs, phones and laptops plugged into the custom seating; while families took selfie turns, snapping pics by the colossal mural and standing small children on firmly cushioned stools to reach different angles and patterns. This brought on some jovial smiles from my Ramler hosts, “you can never predict all the ways that people will use your furniture”. That’s one of the interesting facets of Ramler International: it leaves space for loose interaction. The relationship between guest and guest furniture is certainly earmarked by them from day dot. Up on the guestroom floors, Four Points’ general manager Stephen Ferrigno walked us around every corner of, what he lovingly dubbed, “my hotel”. What was striking about the furniture design in each corridor was the combination of strong, almost exaggerated, geometric lines and soft, round spotlighting. I loved the practicality of placing high-armed sofas next to smaller loungers; it told me I could sit and read without being watched by passers-by. Likewise, guests could meet and

chat without disrupting anyone’s vibe. The funny thing was that, in many ways, the furniture did disrupt the space. Like a well-organised party, each moment spent sat with a piece would lead guests to something else. I watched one man sit in a round lobby armchair, laptop on his knee; he had his backpack sat on a stool at first, then spotted a charging outlet at the base of the lobby sofa-seat; he swirled over, now facing the hotel bar; then he glimpsed a beautiful feature of the hotel, the pendant lamp, hanging above the bar and pulled out his phone to take a photo; this was when he was asked if he wanted a drink, which provoked an order; finally he jumped up to lean on one of the plush, teal barstools while he waited for his beer. This was one of many guests I saw bounce around the hotel foyer and it just highlights how beauty and usefulness can come together with bespoke furniture. It’s what Ramler mean when they suggest that “lustrous fabrics, cool timber colours and organically shaped furniture pieces compliment the modern, business-oriented accommodation space”.

Four points from CEO Garry Ramler

Case in point: Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands

“If you pick up a hotel and shake it; whatever falls out, except the guests, is what we supply. We do all the furniture stuff, the loose stuff. Furniture is one of those topics everyone can relate to. We pride ourselves on our reputation for industry-first innovation and design. We thrive on collaborating with world-class designers and architects to balance the practical with the extraordinary.”

This particular Four Points is part of Melbourne’s burgeoning entertainment and accommodation precinct in the Docklands, and gained a lot of buzz as Marriott International’s first Aussie property in 2017. The hotel is part of the Marina Tower complex; an urban development project that converted 3795m2 of riverside into a mixed-use residential and commercial precinct.



refurbishment r

Hanging out with artists: supplying psychic landscape There is a certain privilege experienced when entering a creative workspace, so; after discovering, many times over, the astronomical mural painting in the foyer of Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands, I was thrilled that Ramler International wanted to introduce me to the prolific artist himself, Al Stark. As the artwork supplier, Ramler worked closely on the Docklands project with Al, so it was a fascinating opportunity to talk with him about it in his Melbourne-based studio. What he said about his process, working on a huge commercial undertaking like this, was quite poignant: “I’m into heavy ideas, end of the world stuff, but you don’t want to rain pessimism on people when they’re holidaying. Still, for it to be justified for me, there has to be some substance. It can’t just be decorative.�

All credit to the artist, Al Stark

He drew, in part, from the lobby aesthetic: “I’m looking at colourways; the gold in the hotel. I know it’s got to be beautiful. I’m thinking a lot about how it’s going to be received. I want it to be striking but a natural part of the environment.� Fitting his masterpieces to context, is the astonishing part of what Al does. The colours in his artwork are reflected in every

inch of the lobby space. Looking around his studio, there are all different sized works. He even pulls out a small card with a miniaturised painting of the Four Points mural to show us. “I think that’s my strength: figuring out, ‘how can I fit my art into this space? what does it need?� On the Ramler-supplied Four Points project, he adds: “There’s a narrative in it, a requiem or

psychic landscape; a dreamy notion of our relationship to the Earth.â€? Talking about the role of high art in branded hotel properties, Al made an impactful point: “There’s a difference between art and branding: art always has the illusion, if nothing else, of being outside of capitalism. People don’t associate it with ‘the sell’. It’s this thing that exists outside. And I think for a brand to say, ‘we commissioned this artist and here’s their work’, it’s a gesture of goodwill almost. “It’s something outside of ‘how can we get you to spend more money’ and is more like ‘here’s this beautiful thing as well’. I think that’s sophistication. It transcends the capital of it all.â€? An endlessly intriguing notion: that the space between capitalism and culture might be how hotel brands interact with creatives in local communities. In this case, Ramler’s really on to something culture-making. â–

A N O T H E R W I N N I N G PA R T N E R S H I P Our creative energy has inspired many of the world’s premier hotel brands to collaborate in turning visionary design into a world-class ergonomic reality. One of our latest partnerships is with Four Points by Sheraton. We are proud to be involved with this exciting new hotel at Docklands in Melbourne. 5PËŒOEPVUNPSF DBMM3PC(JMTIFOBOPOPSFNBJMSPCH!SBNMFSDPN





r refurbishment Four Points by Sheraton Melbourne Docklands:

The careful consideration of what guests find useful, as well as beautiful, was something that really struck GM Stephen after working with the Ramler team. “I've learnt: don't lose sight of the guests and their focus and what they want, when we talk about designing things. We've always got to go back and wonder 'is this a buying decision for guests?', 'is this what they're asking for?', 'is this what they expect?’,” he told me. All 273 guestrooms were furnished by Ramler, including 16 studios. Intuitively designed, everything felt like a nice surprise. The lightness of the dining table, the depth of the floor lights, and cosy sleekness of the desk set-up. When Stephen showed me into different guestrooms, he was excited to point out each artwork, asking me what was my favourite and what did I think about each picture. Absorbed in some of these moments, it felt like we were hopping around an art gallery. I asked Stephen about his favourite corner of the hotel. He immediately lit up, talking about “the

seventh floor”. This is where many of the hotel’s guest facilities are, including the fitness centre, steam room, spa and most prominently the pool deck and Sky Lounge. Ramler is responsible for a huge amount of this floor: modular outdoor seating, sun loungers, tables, illuminated planters (a popular feature among guests), custom rugs, and a lot more. There was a real brightness that flowed, even though plenty of the adjoining nooks and corridor crannies were kept atmospherically dark. As I continued to watch people interact with the different furnishings, something Stephen said really rang true: “It's honest and it's uncomplicated. It keeps things simple and relevant to the guests.” Isn’t it quite magical when the right people share a vision? ■ By Rosie Clarke, Editor

Face in point: Stephen Ferrigno, general manager “I ran the Noosa Sheraton for 10 years before it transitioned into a Sofitel… I started my career as a porter with Sheraton back in 1992." "Through the company's support, hiring from within and developing people, I was fortunate enough to be mentored by some great managers and move through the ranks to be general manager today. If you take pride in serving people then it's a great career.”




Beautiful art for every wall Custom made in Australia. Fast delivery and ready to hang

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r refurbishment Case Study – Riverside Hotel:

KONE successfully completes lift modernisation at Riverside Hotel FIRST IMPRESSIONS ARE IMPORTANT TO EVERY HOTEL, ESPECIALLY INDEPENDENT ESTABLISHMENTS LIKE THE RIVERSIDE HOTEL, WHICH STRIVES TO PROVIDE A TOPNOTCH EXPERIENCE FOR GUESTS FROM THE SECOND THEY ENTER THE LOBBY ALL THE WAY TO THE GUESTROOM. To present an impeccable first impression, a full lift modernisation was needed. Located in Southbank Parklands, the cultural hub of the Brisbane Entertainment Centre, QPAC and GOMA and across the river from the vibrant city centre, Riverside Hotel is popular with both business and holiday travellers. It offers comfortable hotel rooms and stylish, selfcontained one-bedroom apartments with the amenities and facilities that you would expect from quality inner-city Brisbane accommodation. Its world class conferencing facility is perfect for business travellers but also caters to guests looking for a more relaxing break, resting by the pool. Riverside Hotel’s general manager, Rod Argyle, told us: “This is an excellent property that puts guests first, where every detail is tailored to make a positive and lasting first impression. It is expertly maintained with first-class facilities onsite to create the best experience for our guests.” “The safety and wellbeing of guests is always the top priority; therefore, we take advantage of innovative improvements. More recently, one of those improvements aimed to enhance the overall elevator experience and give our guests peace-of-mind.” Apart from ensuring safety, the decision to modernise Riverside Hotel’s elevators came down to tenant and guest satisfaction. Mr Argyle elaborated: “It was an easy decision to modernise the elevators and make them more efficient and reliable, reduce wait times, integrate access smart control features (allowing for better control of elevator traffic), improve general performance and minimise disruptions.”
































r refurbishment Case Study – Riverside Hotel:

KONE was brought in for the Riverside Hotel elevator project because of the excellent relationship they share, which began more than six years ago when KONE responded to the hotel’s distress call during the 2011 Brisbane floods. Ever since this first contact, KONE has continued to provide quality services to the elevators, automatic doors and rollershutters. John Christopher is the business manager – modernisation solutions from KONE. He told us: “A great bond has been built between KONE and Riverside Hotel, thanks to their establishment’s family business atmosphere and positive reception to KONE’s services and communications. It is an absolute pleasure to regard a group of customers as friends, built on the pillars of a strong business partnership. Talking about the lift renovation, Mr Christopher said: “The project involved the full replacement of a five-stop hydraulic elevator with KONE N Monospace technology. “Completed in January 2017, this project was undertaken as the existing hydraulic elevator had reached its 20-year life-cycle expectation and parts had become difficult to source, exposing the hotel to unwanted down-time in case of failure.” The project was meticulously planned prior to its start onsite, with Riverside Hotel’s team proactively advising all tenants and guests of the expected interruption, downsizing the level of complaints to a record almost zero. “Removal of the existing elevator went without a hitch, as well as the installation of the new KONE N Monospace unit” Mr Christopher continued. “The onsite works program took four weeks, including the removal of the existing elevator. KONE worked closely with the management team at Riverside Hotel, Mike O’Farrell and Rod Argyle alongside the body corporate committee to present our proposal and logistically organise the project execution.” According to Mr Christopher, the elevator upgrade provides the hotel with “reliability improvement, energy efficiency, aesthetic appeal, speed increase, decrease in maintenance cost, smoother ride comfort, increased safety features, 20-year life-cycle reset and overall asset quality and value increase.”

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Customer feedback was excellent, Mr Christopher revealed: “They were very impressed with KONE’s professionalism during installation and the car interior finishes proved to be very aesthetically pleasing. The callout rate has reduced and the speed and comfort of the ride has been well received by tenants and guests.” From Riverside Hotel’s point of view, a very appreciative Mr Argyle said: “I would like to personally congratulate each member of KONE for the successful completion of Riverside Hotel’s lift modernisation project, started mid-December, with completion ahead of schedule mid-January, 2017.” On KONE, he added: “We must appreciate your professionalism by which you have completed the project. The efforts put in by John Christopher, business manager QLD/NT, Ryan Cameron, business consultant and Andre Noorli, project manager. I was so impressed by your work that I am looking forward to the next project. Recognition and praise also for KONE service technician, Derek Hughes: no other employee puts in as much work and dedication into any project/service. Derek’s professionalism is a credit to the company and the results achieved are a real boon for KONE. “Wow, the feedback not only from our team but guests are still raving about ‘Derek the Irishman’!” On a final note, he concluded: “Yes, there were many challenges along the way: housekeeping and operational teams, but mainly the guests who had requested higher floors, however, the continued hard work and dedication from each one of you at KONE overcame all hurdles. “Great job once again!” ■ By Mandy Clarke, Industry Reporter

1-2 NOVEMBER 2017


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refurbishment r Holiday Park Upgrades:

Changing perceptions with integrity WHEN YOU UPGRADE, YOU WANT TO SEE A NOTICEABLE DIFFERENCE. You expect to hear glowing reviews, receive notable thanks and eventually witness a growing profit margin. Otherwise, frankly, what’s the point? It’s not something lots of providers talk about, but it does happen (we’ve all read the reviews): guests wondering ‘why on Earth did they go with that carpet pattern?’ or ‘who thought it was a good idea to paint the walls that colour?’ or ‘who designed the room layout?’. Everyone has an opinion, a keyboard and the need to be heard; so, critics are everywhere. As with anything in life, you can’t control how people will perceive you or your choices. What you can do is control your own intentions and the integrity of your property by partnering up with suppliers that share your ethos. The best way to do this is to check out their previous work, talk to the people directly (use that phone you’re so eager for guests to book through) and get a sense of the brains behind every operation. That’s truly the best way to rope your property into the refurbishment of your dreams. When I say that controlling your own intention is important, I’m not talking about ‘I intend to make a profit’. That’s always an underlying business resolve. I’m talking about the ‘why’.

Why should your property increase its profits? At your core, what do you intend to be the outcome of a refurbishment. Perhaps it’s about bettering your family’s lifestyle, in which case family values should likely be at the forefront of your establishment. Perhaps you want to maximise the potential of your staff, in which case efficiency, organised calm and harmonious communications should be at the forefront. Do you want to boost the reputation of your business? That will likely push image and aesthetic

The integrity of your refurbishment comes down to how true the upgrade is to the intention behind it

to the centre of your upgrade. The integrity of your refurbishment comes down to how true the upgrade is to the intention behind it. Of course, not all refurbs are made equal: some will be smaller or larger than others and intentions can be multifaceted. But the same rule generally applies.

Beds for days Because they aren’t just for bedtime when it comes to holiday accommodation: guests lounge on beds, particularly if they are irresistibly comfy, as much as possible during their stay. Who doesn’t drop their bags and collapse on top of the mattress as soon as they walk in? Travelling is exhausting. If the comfort level blows you away immediately, you might even forego leaving the space for a while. One of the biggest camping complaints is a lack of bed comfort so the impact would be even greater.

What is a quality sleep? Health and sleep quality are becoming more integral to people’s lifestyle choices; so beds that are clean, green and healthy are important. AH Beard group manager Peter Deveny tells AMG: “All of our mattresses use locally manufactured comfort fills that are the highest possible quality and are made using the most stringent environmental and health protocols. The company has a diverse range of beds to suit most budgets and ratings, “but central to all of our range is an

unwavering focus on comfort, health and quality sleep”. He adds: “We conduct extensive research into sleep habits and quality and we use this data to ensure that we offer the commercial accommodation industry a range of that beds that will consistently deliver quality sleep to the guest. “We also offer products like upholstered headboards, matching to the base upholstery, bases with storage options as well as rollaway beds and bunks. We also stock a range of high quality pillows in materials like latex and memory foam.




r refurbishment Holiday Park Upgrades:

There are a heap of trends when it comes to holiday bed refurbishment. One big one is family and couple ‘glamping’. Glamourous camping may have started life as a joke to get reluctant wives and elderly parents onboard for an outdoorsy weekend retreat, but it’s become an industry gamechanger. It poses the best of both worlds: home comforts and wild nature blended together in the holiday park of one’s choice. Flexibility goes along with this as another trend. Bed options to suit a variety of groups and guest-sets while maintaining the aesthetic and integrity of the park. Mixed bed options like bunk-beds and different mattress sizes are great for modelling park packages around backpacking groups, school groups, children and families, students and even young couples holidaying with friends. Of course, another trend is intricately upholstered glamp facilities. This involves bed-sets with matching headboards, cushioned storage, pillows, quilts and blankets; even matching upholstery around the tent, van or cabin via curtains, netting and throws. The more seamless, rustic and local, the better. You’ve heard of a pillow menu but what about a blanket brochure?

Nothing says charming #parklife like sustainably made materials and blankets that tell a local story. Most manufacturers will now fill you in on all the info about how their products are made, so why not share it with your guests?

Swim on a whim How to keep those kids out of their parents’ hair? Holiday parks are in a unique position to entertain pint-sized guests. Not only do you have a natural location primed for playtime, but holiday parks come with a spirit of fun that should capture kids’ imaginations.

Slide into your guests’ hearts Holiday park upgrades are as simple as “water = fun for kids, so waterslides = more fun for everyone”, according to Australian Waterslides and Leisure spokeswoman Annette Matthews. “The thrill of rides and appeal to adventure will bring in all different types of patrons,” she added. “Waterslides and waterplay equipment give a new edge to better occupancy and family appeal.” Waterslides and waterplay equipment are the basis of



creating any water adventure in a safe and controlled environment. Ms Matthews shared that “zero-depth play structures are safe and give hours of fun to young patrons”. She also offered some tips for managers looking to dip into waterplay territory or organise a waterslide upgrade. “Target all age groups,” Ms Matthews suggests. “For 1-3 years, gentle water spouts in a zero-depth water play area that is segregated away from the older children.

For 3-5 years, bigger water sprayers and a central geyser with a couple of small slides, tipping cones, spinning wheels and water tunnels. For 5-12

years, larger slides, tipping buckets and water sprayers blended together to create a waterpark for the older children.”



The Australian Waterslides & Leisure team has provided professional services to the waterpark and leisure industry for more than 36 years – we built the first waterslide in Australia in 1979! This experience ensures a unique blend of creativity, innovation and commercial reality. More than just a leading designer and manufacturer of innovative waterslides and water play attractions, we are also able to advise clients in the areas of concept and design, feasibility studies and park operations. We provide one of the most comprehensive ranges of waterpark rides in the world. From a gentle body ride where a toddler can ride on his parent’s lap, to the very latest “white knuckle” rides which will excite even the most adventurous of teenagers.

Turtle Beach Resort on the Gold Coast turned an often unused Tennis Court into a state of the art Waterpark.

Mats are not a requirement on our body rides. The smooth joining of the slide sections and accuracy of mouldings ensure a safe, smooth and comfortable ride. New high tech gaskets and sealants ensure the water stays on the inside of the flume and contributes to the longevity of the support structure. Our

company is committed to providing quality and service to all facets of the Waterpark and Leisure Industry around the world. Our methods of manufacture and installation are constantly reviewed and modified to incorporate new technology and innovations as they become available.

If you hav e spare or unused sp ace at you r proper ty why not g ive us a call to fi nd out ab out the Water park optio ns that are a vailable to you.

Waterslide Design & Construction Consultancy & Operations Setup Computer Aided Design Management & Marketing Services Scopes Water Play Equipment Splash Pads AUSTRALIAN WATERSLIDES & LEISURE PTY LTD P.O Box 2220, Coffs Harbour NSW 2450 Phone: +61 2 6653 6555 | Mobile: +61 4197 37920 Email:

r refurbishment Holiday Park Upgrades:

Most parks will have a swimming pool, or access to a lake; for instance, but do they have a waterslide? Do they have pool toys and games? Do they have sprinklers or water guns, or inflatables? Have you thought about installing a projector screen by the pool for nighttime movie showings? There’s so much that can be done in a holiday park to give children more to do and enjoy.

Laundered dreams Facilities that shouldn’t be overlooked by any parks planning a refurb, are laundry facilities. Particularly if you want guests to stay with you for more than one or two nights: solid laundry solutions are essential.

Cashless payment systems “With the increased acceptance of credit cards for purchases of items and services of low value,” GC Laundry Equipment managing director Phil Hodges tells AMG. It means that products and services like the company’s Express Pay assists owners from having to worry about having coins available for the laundry.

Guests often use the laundry facilities at times when a park’s office is closed and the introduction of a credit card facility removes any hassle that might arise. “The Readers can be easily fitted to any Dexter washer or dryer (and we can fit to most other brands) as long as the park has an internet connection or mobile phone reception for sim card access.

The park can still retain the coin mechanism on the Dexter machine, giving the park users a choice of coin or card

operation. “The park gets the benefit of having an audit system, often overlooked by many park owners.”


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refurbishment r

Taking pride in aquatic design

Snapshot supplier view: AMG spoke to industry supplier Phil Hodges, the managing director at GC Laundry Equipment, to find out his opinion on the matter. Mr Hodges said: “I believe the important arears to consider is reliable equipment that can be environmentally friendly in using less water and power than previous equipment. Modern equipment can reduce water usage by up to 60 percent and reduce power by up to 50 percent. “Also, there is the area of accountability with equipment having full audit facility and the use of credit cards to eliminate the use of coin problems; such as jams, collecting, banking and recording, vandalism, theft, etc.”

Behold, the small touch The tiniest change can engender peace of mind for you and your staff. Swapping out tired old furnishings, or reinventing some of the tent set-ups or cabin areas to make them more magical can make all the difference if you’re looking to freshen up. If you don’t know where to start, scan through your reviews and find out where most of the criticism is pointing at – bathrooms? Barbecue area? Beds? Whatever it is, use that as the spark to revitalise your holiday park. ■

“Adding the attraction of a well-designed, well-built swimming pool or leisure water park splash pad is a brilliant way to attract visitors and an effective way to strengthen appeal in securing new bookings and repeat visitors,” according to Beau Corp business development manager Michael Hoy. With more than 50 years’ experience in offering sustainable design and construction services, the company is proud of its award-winning history renovating or constructing aquatic facilities, camp kitchens and amenity blocks.

“A quality design and build service will make a huge difference over the life of a pool or aquatic facility,” added Mr Hoy. “Our company works closely with the Discovery Group, NRMA Holiday Parks and ATPM. Our clients understand that the pool or water park serve as social meeting places, an agora, where guests can have fun, mingle, relax and recharge. “Holiday-makers can now fully enjoy fantastic aquatic facilities built all over Australia.”

By Rosie Clarke, Editor

QLD BuildIT 2016/17




r refurbishment Bedroom Furniture:

Gorgeous guestrooms: what’s in and what’s out? ACCORDING TO A RECENT SURVEY OF OUR READERS ON ACCOMNEWS.COM.AU THAT WE CONDUCTED, 75 PERCENT OF YOU WILL BE LOOKING TO REFURBISH YOUR PROPERTY WITHIN THE NEXT FIVE YEARS. While looking to update, you might be tempted to put every effort and resource into a show-stopping lobby, a themed restaurant or even a cosy café or bar. Yet, many guests bypass these spaces, heading straight to the guestroom where they spend most their time. It’s a given that guestrooms must be well designed, well maintained and; above all, meticulously clean but unique and individual features. Pieces and furnishings will lift your accommodation to another level. Comfort is key but add a tinge of excitement and a sprinkle of inspiration. When it comes to revamping your guestrooms, what’s in and what’s out?

Hipster hospitality We all know the hipster drill: a permeating smell of freshly brewed coffee, craft beer, reclaimed wood, repurposed materials, retro furniture, and a moustachioed barista/receptionist who serves you at the front desk, which happens to double as a lobby/bar. Right now, hipster is almost a blanket theme across many hotels countywide. The origin of this trend began with great intentions - a reverence to local, artisanal and craftsmen, with sustainability in mind. Take care with this latest design wave of ‘themed’ hipster hotels because it will become trite. Nevertheless, authentic local additions to your guestrooms with elements of sustainable, locally crafted furnishings and art is a trend that shows no signs of fading; just make sure your rooms are original.

Reflect the location Use your unique locale to inspire design and incorporate local elements. For instance, Sage Hotel James Street in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley has managed to seamlessly combine its traditional façade with modern hotel guestroom interiors, taking direct inspiration from both the wider Brisbane River location (beautiful riverbed artwork) and the cultural hub that surrounds the hotel. The vibe is that of authenticity, while shining a light on local art and culture through furnishings and design. As part of the Silverneedle Hospitality Group’s ethos to “celebrate locale”, this hotel worked with many local designers, stores, craftspeople and their ideas, designs and products have been knitted into the fabric and furnishings of the hotel.

Lighting Be imaginative, use latest technologies and go wild with lighting! Practicality is a priority, bright bathrooms and good reading lights are essential, and guestrooms must be able to go dark, easily, and quickly within reach of the guest bed. Remember, lamps and lighting may also need to be decorative during daylight hours, but also be atmospheric with a warming glow of a lamp or perfect an ambience with the hue of good LED mood lighting.

Clever use of space If every inch of space is used wisely in your guest rooms you can increase revenue and look cool and impressive. Utilise under the bed, go up and take advantage of wall space and choose multi-use furniture. An example of innovative urban hotel design that utilises guestroom space without compromising comfort or style is the new BreakFree On Cashel



Sage Hotel, Fortitude Valley, Brisbane guestroom

in Christchurch NZ. The designers have created a quirky, high-tech guestroom with simple custom furnishings and efficient use of space.

Turnkey design Specialists can be employed or collaborated with to create a look, design, and furnishings that are coordinated in style, colour, and practicality across an establishment within an agreed budget. In this scenario, furnishings and fitments are sourced from a variety of local and overseas manufacturers. The team of experienced specialists can provide anything from the initial concept through to prototypes, management, delivery, installation, and the final products.

Window coverings drapes blinds and curtains Basic? You would think that it is, but many establishments do not get this right. Make sure your room can get as dark as possible to promote the best possible sleep experience. Whether your choice of window covering is blinds, curtains, or sheer curtains; getting good advice on the perfect fit, colour, style, and fabric used is vital.

Recycle design concepts It is cost-effective and sustainable to cleverly use well-made basic furniture designs, colours, and materials that are suitable for all seasons, tastes, and trends. From there, you can add and interchange elements; pulled out for different seasons, so that your guestrooms are freshly updated.

Custom bedheads These are right on trend: make your headboard a beautiful focal point of the room and/or utility space. Use the architecture of the bed and make it ultra-tech with gadgets, lighting, phone, tablet, and USB connectors.

Buy what you see Increasingly, furniture designers and manufacturers are joining forces with hotel brands in an innovative business model to allow guests to purchase decorative and functional pieces, and soft furnishings that they like during their stay. This concept of a furniture-experience hotel is not as groundbreaking as it seems, with many hotel chains, like Marriott, selling their beds online to guests for many years.

Shape, colour and simplicity Think nature, stillness and calm. Natural timber finishes are an important look, with simple lines and well-crafted pieces and don’t forget to add comforting texture. Also on trend, is a natural/earthy colour palette with hints of muted metallic and splashes of invigorating colour. ■



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er energy & resources Air Conditioning:

It’s getting hot in here... so fix the air conditioning How much do guests care about inroom air conditioning?


According to TripAdvisor’s 2016 TripBarometer: “Globally, 63 percent of travellers said air conditioning is a must-have when choosing a place to stay. That makes it more of a deal-breaker than breakfast (40 percent) or a swimming pool (26 percent).” For this reason alone, it is essential to insist that your chosen air conditioning system has user-friendly controls.

Even in winter, guests love nothing more than to stick on the air-con, kick back with a blanket and relax. Is it the novelty? As families continue to feel the effects of an ongoing, global recession; air conditioning is generally something reserved for extreme heat at home. While holidaying, people might like the perceived novelty of being able to flick on the cool air with no underlying financial pressure.

System controls At the very least, how clear can you make user instructions? It might seem obvious to management or housekeeping, but many guests won’t have a clue how to use the remote. It isn’t always as simple as an ‘on’ and ‘off’ switch, particularly when there are multiple units, timers and fluctuating temperatures involved. To avoid those oh too familiar phone calls to the front desk, a sign or note situated somewhere obvious in the room detailing how to work the air conditioning in the room is invaluable.

Of course, if this is the case then it doesn’t show much concern for the manager that must bear the cost, which is why capping temperature is an essential part of any commercial system.

Refurb and repairs

Either way, whether an accommodation property is a motel, hotel, or block of serviced apartments, temperature control is a staple when it comes to caring for guests.

Air-conditioning systems come in a variety of shapes and sizes, which makes repairing and servicing them a more complex endeavour than most guests would appreciate.

Add value with air con trends “When installing a new air conditioning system in an existing building, greater control of energy consumption and indoor comfort, flexibility of installation, as well as space-saving compact outdoor units, should be considered”, according to Fujitsu spokesperson Dave Smith.

Fujitsu General has a wide

“How users interact with an air conditioning system, and the requirements of the venue, also needs to be assessed when choosing the best control system.

simultaneous cooling and

“Control options include individual wired and wireless controls, all the way up to


range of solutions to suit commercial projects of many sizes. For instance, AIRSTAGE VR-II VRF heat recovery air conditioning systems. “Designed for installation into new and existing commercial premises, the Fujitsu VR-II large capacity multi-VRF air conditioning system facilitates heating; so, temperatures can be adjusted to suit the needs of different areas within a building”. Speaking advanced central and building management control systems with energy-saving features. Choosing the optimum control


solution for the air conditioning system may influence energy consumption and can lead to efficiency improvements.”

to a professional will ensure the most optimum solution is selected to meet the requirements of your venue.




Stepping successfully from couture to accommodation, Australian designer Alex Perry has leant his name and classic yet edgy style to the Alex Perry Hotel & Apartments in Brisbane’s fashionable Fortitude Valley. Given the high-end accommodation on offer, a quality air conditioning and ventilation system was sought by both the developer and designer. Mechanical services contractor Energy Air was engaged to bring the design from its 2009 Building Code of Australia (BCA) compliant version into 2014. It required the same design intent prepared by the original consultant whilst providing a value-engineered solution to improve the constructability of the project. Although the original design documentation specified a range of Fujitsu units to be used, like every good contractor, Energy Air went to market. Ultimately, Fujitsu proved to be the best solution. Not only did Fujitsu have the best price point, it also offered the length of pipe run desired (50m) where many competitors could not.

Fujitsu’s streamlined design also allowed more units to be housed on the roof, resulting in less construction and ultimately generating less noise for the residents. Fujitsu’s solution included 44 J-IIS Series heat pump units, 132 indoor units and 106 standard product systems offering individual control (including zone control in the apartments) and billing. The J-IIS Series also offer high seasonal efficiency and longer refrigerant pipe lengths to meet the requirements of the project. To date, the Fujitsu equipment installed has continually proven to be a successful choice for the Alex Perry Hotel & Apartments. To find out how Fujitsu can provide varied solutions for your project, call 1300 882 201 today.

er energy & resources Air Conditioning:

Upgrading an air conditioning system altogether can also present some, perhaps, unforeseen difficulties. The main incentives for regular maintenance and repairs are, first and foremost, guest health and safety. Longevity of life for the machine itself is another key imperative. If allowed to dirty and fester, air conditioning units may swiftly become a breeding ground for harmful bacteria and mould. Legionnaires’ disease is one nasty consequence that can result from microorganism growth in badly maintained air conditioning. The cooling tower is the part of the system that can really promote these health hazards, so it is vital that they be kept resolutely spick and span with a chorine treatment or other recommended maintenance upkeep. If rooms are kept too cold, it can also dry out guests’ airways leaving them prone to infection and illness. The same goes for staff, which is why air conditioning in lobbies and common areas should also adhere to the same strict maintenance schedule. Humidifiers are another option to counteract this dryness and many air conditioning systems now come with a variety of dehumidifying settings for the sticky summer months that prevent rooms from becoming too chilly. Some type of dehumidifier setting is also handy over the hot season when it comes to limiting power consumption. If guests are allowed to eat a property’s energy bill by flipping the air conditioning all the way down

to sub-zero temperatures, it won’t just burn a whole in management’s pocket. The environment is a pressing issue (or should be) for all who like to breathe. Sadly, instant gratification is too much for so many people to resist that it’s essential to put as many restrictive air conditioning measures in place as possible. Of course, you still want your guests to be comfortable so there is a fine line to be towed.

What about HVAC? Heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) systems are uniquely situated on this front because they combine a lot of these features. While this aids convenience it also means that special care must be taken to make sure they are well maintained. The HVAC industry has a representative body called the Australian Institute of Refrigeration, Air Conditioning and Heating. Phil Wilkinson,executive manager – government relations and technical services at the institute, told AMG: “The industry has a lot going on at the minute. The two biggest drivers for change are: COP21 emissions reduction drivers - net zero buildings by 2015, and a new phasedown of refrigerants (HFC refrigerants, which are the super greenhouse gases) - the alternative refrigerants all have new safety issues to consider.” He also listed three things accommodation managers should make sure are happening to keep their HVAC systems in pristine condition: 1. 2. 3.

“Monitor energy-use and use the data to identify issues” “Ensure effective maintenance regimes are in place” “Make sure the building is running as it was designed through tuning/ retrocommissioning.

How important is energy consumption? There are four key air conditioning trends that managers should look out for when upgrading, according to Mitsubishi Electric senior product support engineer Ari Grimekis. He cites energy consumption as the first one, as managers are looking to “reduce operating costs”. “New refrigerants (r32) with



In terms of product, the company offers GL series split systems utilising R32 refrigerant. Ari adds: “Installations can be done one room at a time, reducing down time. Existing piping can be re-used under certain lower GWP (global warming potential) must be considered to reduce maintenance costs as older refrigerant prices rise, due to government regulations,”

is another key trend according to Ari. He lists the other two as “quieter machines” and “wifi compatibility” to aid guest comfort and smarter access.

circumstances, with the ‘reuse’ technology feature to reduce cost; and units can be networked for head-end management.”



*Additional optional adapter required


er energy & resources Air Conditioning:

As power prices increase, is in-room air con a financial black hole? HOW CAN YOU MAKE SIGNIFICANT AIR CONDITIONING POWER SAVINGS WITHOUT AFFECTING GUEST COMFORT? Air conditioning remains by far the largest user of electricity in any guestroom.Industry studies show that AC and HVAC costs can account for over 75 percent of the total guestroom power bill and that often over 50 percent of that AC power is wasted, either because rooms are empty, the AC is running too hot or too cold, or the AC is running when doors and windows are left open. The reality is that although most guests like the idea of staying at ‘green’, environmentally responsible accommodation’; most hotel, motel and apartment guests are not overly concerned with practicing good energyconservation behaviour themselves. Energy is an invisible resource. Hotel guests see it and when you combine this with the fact that they are distracted by work or leisure (the primary reasons people stay in accommodation), the level of concern for energy waste is normally exceptionally low. Combined with an exponential increase in power costs, this has created a clear opportunity for the entire sector to save power and money with the introduction of energy saving guestroom automation and smart devices. There are various ways you can ensure that you optimise the air conditioning that you provide your guests and staff and significantly improve your businesses bottom-line.

An ongoing problem Does this sound familiar? Guests walk into a guestroom or apartment, put on the AC and turn it down to the maximum available setting. Once the AC is on, it normally stays on: few guests turn it off when they leave the room or go out and we all know that card ‘power switch’ systems are simply bypassed, either with the issue of multiple cards for each room or another card used instead. Because most guests mistakenly believe that setting

an air conditioner as low (or high) as possible equates to a faster result, air conditioning is consistently set at much lower or higher temperatures than necessary for reasonable comfort. Indeed, it has been said that thermal comfort is ‘90 percent mental and 10 percent physical’. But did you know that by adjusting the room’s setpoint by a few degrees, you could save between five percent and 10 percent of HVAC operating costs for each degree. How can you do take back some measure of control when the AC settings are managed by the guests themselves?

A solution There are new smart products available specifically designed for solving this issue that can be retrofitted without building works or in-wall wiring. With air conditioning by far the most expensive single consumer of power in the accommodation industry, and with energy prices increasing steadily; it makes sense to take steps to minimise wastage and optimise usage. Remember: the best possible way to combat power price increases is to control existing use as effectively as possible. ■ By John Clifford, Director, Aircon Off

Programmable energy saving smart remotes with placebo effect

Aircon Off occupancy sensor controllers for split systems “Designed to monitor room occupancy, these units will

Designed to replace any existing hand held remote control, these smart remotes can be programmed to restrict the range of temperatures a user can access,” shared director John Clifford from Aircon Off. “This prevents an air conditioner from being set to uneconomic (very high or very low) temperatures. They are tamperproof, so that the owner preferences are protected and



automatically either ‘turn off’ or set to ‘economy mode’ split system air conditioning left running in empty rooms. “They have night settings to allow undisturbed sleep, and if you have sliding patio doors, they are available with wireless door and window sensors to our latest model also has a placebo effect feature. This is a function where it appears to AC users that the air conditioner is

operating without any restrictions on its operating range, when in fact the AC is running as efficiently as possible.

prevent the AC from running if doors and windows are left open for more than a very short time.”


er energy & resources supplier profile LEGRAND AUSTRALIA

Legrand Australia launches the Internet of Things Peter Ashurst, the General Manager of Trade Sales for Legrand Australia, addressing the crowd

that adopting it could make sense for some operators. “Without even needing a new app, people will be able to start controlling their light switches [remotely] on their smartphones,” said Guillaume Gimaret, Legrand’s category manager for Wiring Devices and Residential Systems. “And on each of the sockets, you’ll be able to monitor energy consumption.”

Can you turn off the Nespresso machine in your lounge-room by muttering a few words into your smartphone? If you answered a) no or, worse, b) who would ever want to do that, then an upcoming disruption to the way Australian businesses operate and the world communicates could just pass you by. You may be dimly aware of the ‘Internet of Things’: perhaps in a negative away. Crudely put, it means installing communications capability on inanimate objects. Around the time electronics giant LG launched a fridge capable of getting onto the internet in 2010, consumer backlash came swiftly and severely against the idea that even mundane devices needed to be digitally connected.

adopted early by Australian miners who demonstrated it could be used to monitor just about everything and drive novel cost savings. (At one mine site, a one-off $50,000 investment in remotely monitoring tyre pressure in trucks has saved millions in prevented accidents.) Now it seems that food, transport, agriculture and logistics are all following mining’s lead. But what about tourism? Are there savings to be had, or useful applications yet? Legrand ran its accommodation industry sales pitch for new lighting management technology past Accom Management Guide and made a persuasive argument

(The same technology can be extended to control blinds, thermostats and even entry points to a building; and it can turn off any device connected to a socket enabled with the technology, including coffee machines.) That could already reap savings for larger operators, Mr Gimaret says, who are deploying staff to monitor electricity use across dozens of rooms, especially with electricity prices between 20-60 percent for residential and industrial consumers respectively in this year alone. (Earlier detection of needed electricity maintenance, is another one of the products’ main selling points.) Microsoft says digital investments are already boosting its customers’ bottom, which adds an average additional $1.5 million

to their operating incomes but it’s really up to individual businesses to find ways to use the IOT effectively for them. Once technology takes over, Mr O’Keefe cites examples of potential real-world savings like having software take over the task of manually switching off lights on different levels of a building that once had to be performed by a manager. Experts say we still remain on the cusp of realising the benefits of the new Internet of Things. Some of this will come later when the data these devices collect can be analysed and generate insights into ways to more efficiently manage stock, electricity use, or staffing. The CEO of the Australian Internet of Things Alliance, UTS associate professor Frank Ziechner cited research showing the coming added value to the Australian economy if IOT technology is adopted by businesses, in the order of $120 billion. Legrand is calling its program ELIOT – a portmanteau that combines ‘electricity’ and ‘internet of things’ – to find out more information call Legrand Australia on 1300 369 777 or visit

But only recently, heavy hitters from industry and academia across Australia and overseas assembled at Sydney’s Museum of Contemporary Art to make the case that the Internet of Things (IOT) is about to disrupt the global economy. The audience had just heard projections that there will be 50 billion devices connected around the world via the Internet of Things within three years, which will account for about 10 percent of all data sent globally. Microsoft Australia’s lead of Internet of Things projects, Michael O’Keefe, said it was


Legrand Australia & NZ CEO Tony Berland addressing the function



m marketing Channel Management:

A remote control for your booking channels How does the pool handle room types? Can the channel manager differentiate between double rooms, single rooms, special suites or penthouses? There might be 12 rooms in the pool but half of those are suites: how can the system prevent overbooking different room types? These are questions you should ask particular channel management suppliers as the answers will differ depending on each product. You also need to work out how many rooms you want to put into the pool; do you want to reserve a few rooms or room types for offline bookings? One question most managers have is, ‘can we pull rooms out of the digital pool last minute for offline bookings without risking a doublebooking’? The answer differs from supplier to supplier. Communication between you and your channel manager is key. If you keep track of your own data, monitoring the trends and patterns of room bookings and rate success, you can adapt your ‘pool tactics’ to maximise the bookings you want to make.

The money tree

THE CHANNEL MANAGER: GATEWAY TO ONLINE BOOKINGS, DATA TRENDS, RATE REVENUE AND OTA OUTREACH. IT'S A SYSTEM THAT NEEDS TO WORK ON YOUR TERMS BUT ALSO WORK. A DISRUPTIVE, INEFFICIENT CHANNEL MANAGER CAN THROW YOUR WHOLE BUSINESS OPERATION OUT-OF-WHACK; SO, WHAT ARE THE MOST IMPORTANT THINGS EVERYONE SHOULD HAVE IN THEIR BACK-POCKET WHEN IT COMES TO CHANNEL MANAGEMENT? Unless you happen to be a channel management supplier, you’re unlikely to know the technical ins and outs and, let’s face it, you don’t really need to know every mega-byte of intel. What you do need to know is what the systems can do, so you can prioritise what you need your chosen channel manager to do. You also need to know some of the differences between systems – are they all the same? No. Like accommodation providers themselves, channel managers come in different shapes and sizes, with different niches and markets in mind.

OTA workability I know, I know, you aren’t a fan of being on an OTA. Unless you are part of a huge chain though, it’s very difficult to market accommodation without online visibility and that comes part-and-parcel with being on at least a couple of OTAs. Channel managers allow you to keep track of, and manipulate, all your rates and inventory across the different booking channels available to you. Lots of channel managers operate on a ‘pool inventory’ basis. This means that all your rooms exist in a digital pool and your channel manager will allow different booking channels to snag rooms from the pool until the pool is empty. Once the pool has been drained, the channel manager shuts down the booking channels. There are lots of differentiating factors to consider here…



In many ways, channel managers are like virtual money trees; allowing your property rates to sprout into different booking channels so that you find more revenue than you can get solely offline. They themselves also cost money to operate. The more channels you want to manage, the more expensive it will be; the more dates you want to manage at once, the more expensive it will be. This largely comes down to the amount of power, speed and internet strain required to meet all your managerial demands. When it comes to increasing online revenue, there is something to be said for ‘spending money to make money’ but, of course, the trick is figuring out how to mitigate your expenses so there is no waste. Rate management is crucial to consider in this respect. If you want to control three different rates across a 30-day month for seven channels and, say, four different types of room per channel; that’s already a significant amount of data to keep on the straight and narrow. The sheer quantity of information you intend to have flowing through your network at any given time needs to factor in as a central part of any conversation with channel management system suppliers. The idea that anything is going to be ‘unlimited’ when it comes to data or speed is just not realistic, even in 2017.

Mates’ rates a no-go One of the trickiest parts of channel management comes down to choosing rates. Even more so; maximising rates. Should you have firm rules put in place for each room type? Should rates fluctuate daily, weekly, seasonally, or by special event? Can it all be automated or is it better to manage rates manually? These types of questions should all be put to suppliers as part of your decision-making process because they all come down to what’s going to make your life, as the property manager, less stressful. Whether you need to be able to adjust your rates due to new legislation, or because occupancy needs a last-minute boost, you shouldn’t need to make 12 phone calls and down a shot of whiskey to get through it. Life doesn’t need to be that hard.



m marketing Channel Management:

This brings us to the other key consideration when it comes to channel management: how do you want to access it? There are systems out there that allow you to interface via a smartphone app or your tablet; these seem to be favoured among small-scale accommodation providers. Other systems catering to much larger properties will be desktop computer access only. How many people would you need to be able to access the system directly? This comes down to who on your staff makes the rate changes. Suppliers will often provide training and support but you need to be upfront about how much of this you’re likely to require. Are you a husband and wife team that does everything yourself? Do you have a front desk staff member who will also need access? Is there an option to have different levels of access for different people; for instance, operational access for the front desk and then full access for the owner-operators? These are tricky questions to answer without any thought because you might need to reconsider how you and your staff distribute tasks. It extends to the security elements of channel management as well.

PMS compatibility Often, the channel manager is directly linked, or at least interacts with, the property management system (PMS). Depending on the different



brands and products available, this can manifest in different ways. A PMS will interact with staff and guests while on the premises, running day-to-day operations and payments; while a channel manager interacts during the pre-booking and booking stages. There’s obviously some overlap here, so ask about that when looking at different systems. If a channel manager isn’t going to be compatible with your PMS, or vice versa, it might cause you some headaches down the road. This is a particularly important consideration if you have a customised system already in place.

‘I don’t like this channel’ Direct bookings are the golden goose for lots of accommodation providers today and increasing the amount of them you can draw in will likely help you to improve your bottom-line. However, nobody can run before they can walk. There’s a reason so many OTAs have managed to monopolise their markets. They have paid close attention to how consumers shop for accom online and they’ve capitalised on that. Managers will need to take a similar approach if they want to slice themselves a bigger piece of the pie. Follow the data, ask for what you want and listen to your guest feedback. ■ By Rosie Clarke, Editor


marketing m Online Revenue:

The changing value of the channel


ADAPT & THRIVE ADAPT & THRIVE is brought to you by the Australian Revenue Management Association (ARMA) in support with our industry partners the Accommodation Association of Australia (AAoA) and Tourism Industry Aotearoa (TIA). Back for another year after the success of last year. The APAC Revenue Management Summit is the largest education focused conference in the region for revenue/yield management professionals and organisations. The summit appeals to all sectors of the accommodation industry and academics. The theme this year is titled ADAPT & THRIVE, covering all the topics that make you money! Delegates will again be treated to a range of carefully crafted revenue management workshops and breakout sessions led by leading industry

experts and our industry leaders. The event will finish again with our CONNECT program prize draw and drinks in Bobby McGee’s. The Summit will again feature a thriving market place and flexible pricing catering to a range of customer wants and needs. Suitable for revenue/yield management teams, sales and marketing, front office, general managers, property managers and anyone passionate about revenue management education. APAC Revenue Management Summit, 2017 ADAPT & THRIVE Melbourne, August 29 & 30 Rydges Hotel, 181 Exhibition Street, Melbourne BOOK NOW!

THE WALK-IN: POSSIBLY THE LOWEST COST CHANNEL AVAILABLE TO US BUT THERE’S JUST NOT ENOUGH VOLUME OR CONSISTENT VOLUME TO TOTALLY RELY ON IT (UNLESS, OF COURSE, YOU’RE YIELD MANAGING A CAR PARK IN WHICH CASE UPTO 80 PERCENT OF YOUR GUESTS COULD BE WALK-INS). The walk-in, however, is still a lucrative source of revenue. The value of the walk-in channel to a property can vary depending on the market supply and demand on any given day, the time of day and available customer choice. A walk-in at 10am, with approximately eight more hours of potential selling time, could be valued very differently by the property if this same piece of business materialised at 6pm when the night’s soon to pass. This mindset can be applied to all our distribution channels; each channel can bring a different value proposition, i.e. demographic reach, new segment opportunities, global market reach, and hopefully additional volume at varied times or day of week across your annual inventory. Revenue and yield managers are the key stakeholders of channel optimisation, consistency and performance. Their goal is to optimise the net value of all booking channels and align this closely with sales and marketing to maximise opportunities within customer behaviour patterns. How best to manage all the booking sources available to them is a process of constant change and cleverly crafted strategies in conjunction with sales and marketing to influence the right mix. Best practice advice from our top revenue managers is to keep a balanced and flexible approach to distribution. This is to ensure they don’t keep all their eggs in one basket and can optimise each channel available with the anticipated needs of the property. Then, they can make all channels work effectively for the needs of the business. By Melissa Khan, Founding Director, Australian Revenue Management Association GET YOUR FREE TICKET AT NOVACANCY.COM.AU WITH CODE: AMG17 


SUMMIT 2017 AUGUST 29 + 30, 2017




m marketing Chinese Bookings:

5 ways hotels can to get more online bookings from Chinese guests ALMOST 75 PERCENT OF CHINESE TRAVELLERS PREFER TO BOOK THEIR HOTELS VIA AN ONLINE TRAVEL AGENT, ACCORDING TO HOTELS.COM. AND NO, THAT DOESN’T MEAN BOOKING.COM OR EXPEDIA. The Chinese market is dominated by two other players: Ctrip and Qunar (which literally means ‘go where?’). These online travel agents account for about 70 percent of hotel bookings made by Chinese tourists. And their inventory is huge; in Sydney alone, there are over 500 hotels listed on these sites. To get your slice of the booming Chinese tourist market, it’s crucial your hotel stands out on these OTAs. To do that, you need to have a high ranking. Let’s face it, no-one is going to scroll to page 10 to find your hotel. So, how can a hotel stand out, achieve a high ranking and start getting more bookings? Here are our top five tips.

1. Know your Chinese reviews The new breed of independent Chinese travellers include some of the biggest researchers in world travel. According to’s 2016 Chinese International Travel Monitor, 44 percent of Chinese travellers rely on online reviews on OTAs for travel information, making these reviews extremely powerful. For instance, a few bad reviews could push your hotel way down the rankings, meaning it will never be seen by most users. Alternatively, a handful of great reviews or a recommendation by a ‘sleep tester’ on Qunar could see your hotel shoot up the list.

2. Encourage more reviews This one is simple! More reviews = a higher ranking. In a recent audit of Ctrip and Qunar, a hotel with a 3.8 out of five rating and 50 reviews will greatly outrank a hotel with the same rating but only 10 reviews. Your front-of-house staff are essential in this step! Before or during check-out, ensure staff direct your Chinese guests to leave a review on Ctrip or Qunar (or a travel guide site like Qyer or Mafengwo). Other options include having a translated sign on the front-desk asking for reviews, or offering a gift or incentive. If your hotel has set up a WeChat account (even just a personal one), your front-desk staff could also ask to add them as a friend at check-out and then you can send a message a week later asking for a review.

3. Have the facilities that lead to higher rankings Both Ctrip and Qunar use algorithms to determine a hotel’s ranking, and these algorithms prioritise certain features or facilities. For instance, having free wifi is one feature that both OTAs weigh heavily in their rankings. Offering your Chinese guests free wifi is so important – remember, Chinese guests want to share their travel experiences with their friends and family back home, and they need internet to be able to do that! Want to take it to the next level? Apply to Ctrip to become a ‘Chinese Preferred Hotel’. Have a look at the top four hotels for Sydney listed on Ctrip and see if you can see what three out of the four have in common (note that all four also have the ‘free wifi’ symbol): Notice it? It’s the red stamp on the right. That stamp says to Chinese guests, ‘this hotel welcomes me’. When you are a ‘Chinese Preferred Hotel’, your business will be ranked higher and be more visible. Hotels with the accreditation enjoy conversion rates 15 percent higher than those with no endorsement.



How can you get this endorsement? At a minimum Ctrip requires that you offer the following: •

Chinese language information;

Chinese food served at breakfast;

Free wifi;

Acceptance of UnionPay; and

An electric kettle in each room.

4. Ensure your listing details are up-to-date As previously mentioned, both Ctrip and Qunar use algorithms to come up with their own custom rankings, and these algorithms prioritise certain features. As part of our online audits of hotels, we check to make sure that your listing correctly displays all your details and facilities – you would be surprised how often out-of-date or incorrect information is used!

5. Seek out key opinion leaders and ‘sleep testers’ When marketers talk about key opinion leaders (‘KOLs’ for short), they normally mean celebrities or at least in the Chinese context, online celebrities with lots of followers. However, while these types of KOLs can be successfully used by hotels to build their brands, there is one type of KOL that hotels should consider approaching. Qunar, China’s number two player in the online accommodation market, has a special programme that could be roughly translated as ‘sleep tester’. Over 10,000 part-time sleep testers have been recruited by Qunar since 2010, and they are required to find hotels, stay for a night and then write a thorough review on Qunar’s website. Qunar reimburses hotel expenses, but does not give its sleep testers additional pay. A recommendation by a sleep tester can really boost a hotel up the rankings, as the screenshot below shows. These are the top five hotels for Sydney (out of a total of 520), sorted by Qunar’s custom algorithm. Note that the top three all have a green box under their overall rating which says “recommended by our sleep tester”. If you start adopting these five tips, you can bet you’ll start to see more of the 1.2 million Chinese visitors to Australia making it to your hotel or accommodation. Good luck! ■ By Justin Steele, Director, China Ready Now


m marketing supplier profile GOLDEN CHAIN

Strengthening the links in Australia’s largest motel chain With over 30 years of history behind them, Golden Chain Motor Inns is undergoing a renaissance as the group looks forward to capitalise on their strength in numbers as well as the independence of their operators and the group. As Australia’s largest motel chain, Golden Chain has over 200 properties domestically, as well as members in the Asia Pacific, all working together to link their strengths, individual needs and common goals to produce a cooperative that is striding forward to build into the future. As only part of a newly refreshed and renewed agenda, Golden Chain has recently kicked-off a national advertising campaign which launched in late June (2017) covering television, radio, outdoor and digital. With an initial reach expected to start at over 6 million, the campaign targets the core appeal of Australia’s motel markets with an emphasis on the book direct and save message. General Manager, Michael Georgeson, who came on board in 2016, has geared the campaign to leverage the current group consumer membership base, Gold Link, and ensure a high level of newly introduced guests as well as branding exposure. In the first four weeks, the chain’s first major campaign has already seen some substantial results early in its 3-month long run. The campaign follows on from Golden Chain’s rebranding in 2016 which saw the group modernise the look of the chain’s logo which had only had minor variations over 30 years. The rebranding of the chain is a 12-month process allowing members to move at a reasonable pace and respecting the independence of member properties. As part of the rebranding the chain introduced two new sub-brands – Golden Chain Classic and Golden Chain Budget Best – adding to the already established Golden Chain Platinum. The reinvigoration and rebranding of the chain has also introduced members of the cooperative to a new website design, subsidized signage and new merchandising collateral and materials to support the groups efforts. These are to be further supported in coming months with expansion of branding options as the group efforts near completion for final roll-out of the new logo and a fully consistent look and feel for the chain as it finalizes the current marketing campaign. As a group traditionally seen as a marketing cooperative, the latest efforts will set a bedrock for driving the chain forward and prove as a support for Golden Chain’s traditional activities. Chief amongst those is the production of its accommodation guide, which was distributed to over 130,000 travellers last year and will go into it’s next edition later in 2017. As one of the last remaining comprehensive, national, and physical, accommodation guides around, Gold Chain has sought to maintain the quality and relevancy of the guide in the face of online media. It has successfully distributed each run in full for many years now establishing a loyal following of travelers seeking reliable quality accommodation. To underpin this, the group has implemented a new trial Quality Assurance Program this year to assist operators in maintaining and ensuring strong brand support for the chain. The program provides members with a user-friendly program of self-assessment combined with group led field support. The new program has been introduced by Michael who himself had 4 ½ years as an assessor with the then AAA Tourism.

The reinvigoration and rebranding of the chain has also introduced members of the cooperative to a new website design, subsidized signage and new merchandising collateral and materials to support the groups efforts.

Golden Chain sees its co-operative nature as its core point of difference – members maintain a large level of independence without being overly burdened by the imposition of prescribed systems, procedures or practices. This also has the benefit of avoiding many of the costs associated with other groups and chains with Golden Chain member properties avoiding general booking commissions, tariffs, levies or the implications of rebates. As a domestic entity they also benefit from local control and are not beholden to off shore interests. Golden Chain members benefit from the strength of a solid and recognizable brand, but still have a level of flexibility. The brand exists to provide business support through a variety of benefits without imposing too many requirements. In the end, Golden Chain is simply about the best outcomes for group members in a collegiate environment.

The Golden Chain QAP is offered to members largely as a guidance mechanism for the support of their business rather than an assessment. As such Golden Chain takes the role of business support first rather than brand enforcement in line with the operation of the cooperative.




m marketing Star Ratings Takeover:

What’s the update on the Star Ratings saga? LAST MONTH, ONE OF THE OLDEST AND MOST RECOGNISED ICONS IN AUSTRALIAN TOURISM CAME BACK FROM ITS DEATH BED. But questions are now being asked about how many people would miss it if it went out of existence for good. For some 60 years, the Star Ratings Australia Scheme has been the five-point guide for tourism accommodation customers, in the same way Michelin ratings are used to navigate fine dining. But in May, Star Ratings Australia announced it would cease to exist. Developed by motoring clubs in the 1950s as a reliable and independent measure of quality for a tired driver pulling into an unfamiliar town, The Australian Auto Club announced Star Ratings’ time was now up. Like so many trusted and venerable institutions, it had been upended by the internet where millions of unofficial ratings at online travel agencies such as TripAdvisor are increasingly used by consumers. Some made comparisons to the end of the local video store. But it mightn’t be so simple as that. A last-minute deal was reached with the Australian Tourism Industry Council, a non-profit representing the states’ tourism industry associations, to keep Star Ratings going. But some experts question how long the future is for an independent and official tourism accreditor in an unofficial digital age. “Online intermediaries such as and Expedia have transformed [the way travelers] search, evaluate hotel attributes, and [view] supposedly ‘objective’ ratings,” says professor Aaron Tham, an expert on how the internet is changing tourism at the University of the Sunshine Coast. But ATIC, at least, believes there’s value in Stars; and it doesn’t believe the concept needs a major makeover to stay relevant. Notwithstanding all the attention online travel agencies get, when

It’s time for change. Wake up to all the exciting possibilities at NoVacancy Accommodation Business Expo - the largest and most comprehensive business event for the accommodation industry.

it comes to booking their holidays, ATIC’s CEO Evan Hall says that Australians are decidedly old school. “Many travelers still primarily trust independent assessments like Star Ratings when choosing where to stay,” he said. “Eighty-five percent of travelers use the Stars when choosing and booking accommodation, while 92 percent of travellers trust star ratings more than they do selfratings.” And the modern Star Ratings Australia system sidesteps criticism that knocked its forerunner for many years: that its definition of ‘quality’ could be too capricious. (Stars were awarded and subtracted merely for the absence or presence of toilet brushes, bedside lamps or packets of Bushells, detractors said.) The current Star Ratings website includes classification based on both independent assessment and an aggregate of online customer reviews from more than 100 websites in 45 languages, Mr Hall said. That’s a mix, he believes, that puts Australia’s official ratings on a level footing with any international online review aggregator. But critics question how much an institution that pre-dates decimal currency can ever really modernise. Literally nothing is immune to online feedback in 2017. Where official ratings applied only to hotels, restaurants and other commercial venues, beaches, ravines, waterfalls and even entire cities are ranked on a scale of between one and five on websites such as TripAdvisor and WikiTravel. Experts say that means when prospective travelers begin even researching their trip and choosing destinations, they’re already exposed to and interested by the logic of the user, not expert review. That makes it very hard for Star Ratings to compete, as a system of ratings that travelers may only pay attention to once they have chosen their holidays.

1-2 NOVEMBER 2017


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marketing m

Another common criticism comes from the top of the tourism market, which says that ratings are passĂŠ and have been replaced by brands. Operators like Accor now have a dozen brands; Marriott (and its new acquisition, Starwood) have some 30 between them.

The world of restaurants – where negative criticism is famously even snippier and more pointed than tourism – provides a canary in the coalmine here

Big brands say they offer something to consumers that is more important than a simple rating and can’t be quantified by it: a sense of ambience. At the top of the food chain, insiders give a frank account of how customers choose. “Some care whether a TV offers HD and 400 channels, others count the threads on the bed linen,� an industry source says. “Demands of guests have changed, multiplied and no longer does one-size or even threesizes-fit-all, and that’s why the old Star Ratings system is redundant.� Tourism and Accommodation Australia mourned the apparent passing of Star Ratings Australia in May. But now they have questions about whether it can – or should – be revived.

But it’s moving too fast to be truly credible for consumers, he says. “I don't see social media such as TripAdvisor (much less personal blogs) serving as an adequate substitute to formal certification,� he says. “It is even much more vulnerable to abuse and still suffers from many credibility problems.� He sees a world where social media is used selectively in marketing and as testimonials – but it won’t, he says, spell the end for star ratings. ■By JP Robertson, Industry Reporter

“We have no clarity how the new Star Ratings system will be run,� said CEO Carol Giuseppi. “Brands and consumer ratings have overtaken the old motor association’s ratings system. “Star ratings may have had relevance in the early days of the hotel industry when the industry was dominated largely by independent hotels and it was harder for travelers to be able to predict the level of facilities they could expect, but that is no longer the case.� But brands don’t explain it all. And operators have no shortage of gripes about the shortcomings of user-generated reviews.

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Critics claim that user-generated systems are open to abuse; particularly to discourage new entrants, who can find themselves bombarded with bad feedback. The world of restaurants – where negative criticism is famously even snippier and more pointed than tourism – provides a canary in the coalmine here. Yelp, a service that specialises in user-generated restaurant reviews, receives more than 2000 contributions an hour – an amount that is almost impossible to police. But exposĂŠs in the American media have found people are paid to leave negative feedback about competitors, or positive feedback for their employers. More than 400 companies in two years have been banned, or lost civil suits, for leaving misleadingly negative reviews. (Statistical analysis finds non-professional feedback is invariably absolutist: experiences rank as one-star or five, whereas professional critics embrace the middle ground.) Harnessing the power of the hive mind is an intriguing idea – and its moment has arrived. Professor David Weaver, a fellow of the International Academy for the Study of Tourism says the world is moving through an era where the appetite for measuring things – what he calls “metrificationâ€? is insatiable. GET YOUR FREE TICKET AT NOVACANCY.COM.AU WITH CODE: AMG17 


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ss safety & security Privacy:

Privacy? I don't have anything to hide Arvo Elias Cybercons

With so much publicity surrounding this quarter’s major ransomware outbreak, which spread to more than 150 countries, here is a timely reminder of something that you can do to check whether your details have been stolen by hackers. When hackers steal your account details from a third-party system, they call it Pwning. It's pronounced ‘poning’, and is hacker-speak for owning someone's details. No, I have no idea why either. But it does explain the reasoning behind an excellent online resource called Have I Been Pwned. You'll find it at and it's basically a searchable database of stolen email addresses that have been acquired by hackers and then posted on the internet. The database currently comprises 3.7 billion entries, from almost 50,000 different hacks. To use it, just go to the site and type in your email address. The site will tell you if your details have been leaked. If they have, you'll need to change your passwords. You can also subscribe to the service if you want, which will then automatically alert you if your details subsequently appear in the database. Much of this is brought about because everywhere you go online, it seems that somebody is asking for your email address whether there’s a valid reason for it or not. This can range from newsgroups, mailing lists to shopping or voucher sites or simply to download a piece of freeware. Everybody wants it because they know how valuable it can be. The problem is, every time you give out your email address, you run the risk of being bombarded with spam, even if you think you have opted out. You might be able to unsubscribe from some of these messages, but sometimes it can take weeks to get off the mailing list, or more often than not the option just doesn’t work at all. But thankfully there’s a solution by using disposable or temporary email addresses. I confess to using these when I find myself on a site I do not trust and that, by the way, includes some of the ubiquitous comparison sites. They just don't want to tell you anything unless you at least provide an email address. You have guessed it; they will either bombard you with endless requests to sign on and even if they don't use the information directly themselves it will be passed on to third parties, after all that is how they make their income.

If you do find you have been hacked, change all your passwords to all your accounts immediately

The general idea is for the temporary email address to be created and remain active long enough for you to receive a reply from whoever the address was given to. Then you don’t have to use it again.

emails, so that a more important inbox stays ‘clean’. So, who provides

A disposable email address (DEA) is a pain to marketers and often an indication of fraudulent activity online. Alternatively, a DEA is just a way for a consumer to fight back against spam and bad opt-in protocols, or a good tool for developers to test software. You decide.

Search terms such as ‘throwaway email’, ‘one-off email’, ‘single-use email’,

Disposable email addresses are just what they say they are; email addresses that people use for a short time and then don’t use again. It’s possible to get a new email address and receive email within seconds, with no sign-ups, no contact details required and certainly no verification that the person using the email address is ‘real’. Many sites will activate and assign you a disposable email address from the second you access the site. Spooky, huh?

If you take a look at these sites, you’ll see how the email addresses can be

All you need to get a disposable email address is an internet connection and very basic user skills. If you can use Google, click, cut and paste you can be online receiving email to a brand-new account really quickly; usually within less time than it takes to carry out an online transaction. Don’t confuse DEAs with the free email accounts on offer from email service providers such as Yahoo, Hotmail, Gmail and similar. The sites that offer DEAs are different. They are providing a service for people who want a throwaway email address that is used for a short period of time, or as a bucket address for marketing



these? Some of the more well-known providers of these time limited email addresses are Mailinator, and guerillamail. There are others too. ‘burner email address’, all bring up results of a number of sites to get these DEAs from. For personal preference I use a system, which runs on my mobile and both Android and Apple are extensively catered for.

offered with limited time; ten minutes, an hour or indeed for as long as you like. That’s why DEAs are also known as ‘burners’, they are email addresses that burn out quickly. These email addresses aren’t illegal. If you are a marketer and you are seeing disposable email addresses on your mailing lists you ought to take action to remove them. If you use a temporary email address for online transactions, you don’t have the irritation of receiving emails you don’t want. That’s good. But just remember that if you purchase something and cannot remember the email address you used then issues regarding returns and warrantees arise. And if you do find you have been hacked, change all your passwords to all your accounts immediately. The web is that dangerous!


safety & security ss supplier profile ASSA ABLOY HOSPITALITY

Advanced Technology and Design Converge with ASSA ABLOY Hospitality Locking Solutions Mobile solutions are leading the way when it comes to advanced technologies that are transforming the hospitality industry. With consumers becoming more tech and mobile savvy, travelers all over the world are seeking more unique and personalized experiences when they stay away from home. ASSA ABLOY Hospitality Mobile Access provides a true solution to meet these traveler demands, allowing hotel guests to skip the front desk and access their guestrooms by using their smartphone or watch as a secure digital key. Operating with secure Seos technology from ASSA ABLOY, this industry leading solution not only maximizes guest convenience, experience and loyalty, but also streamlines operational efficiency. An industry first, and meeting the most stringent security standards, ASSA ABLOY Hospitality Mobile Access includes messaging, strong authentication and data confidentiality. The solution integrates with a hotel’s PMS to allocate guestrooms and generate encrypted digital keys that are securely delivered to a guest’s smartphone. The key is then placed into a secure key vault within the hotel’s mobile app, and is transmitted via a secure communication channel when presented to the appropriate lock, safely unlocking the door.

The solution is flexible, providing hoteliers with the ability to implement digital key functionality in the manner that best suits a property’s unique needs. There are three options for implementing a guest-facing mobile app with ASSA ABLOY Hospitality Mobile Access. This can be accomplished either through a property’s existing app, via a third-party vendor in the ASSA ABLOY Hospitality Certified Partner Program, or by leveraging ASSA ABLOY Hospitality’s standalone solution for a quick and straight-forward rollout. The Mobile Access solution is also fully compatible with ASSA ABLOY Hospitality’s most design-centric VingCard locking solutions, Allure and Essence, allowing hoteliers to combine the most advanced security technology with a unique and memorable design aesthetic. •

VingCard Allure – A next generation electronic locking solution that provides the ultimate in security and minimalistic design, VingCard Allure removes hardware from guestroom doors onto adjacent walls. Allure’s sleek, modern signage panel controls the locking mechanism and offers a range of features that can be tailored to a hotel’s unique design needs.

VingCard Essence – Taking minimalism to the extreme, the VingCard Essence lock encases all electronic components inside the door itself, making security virtually invisible to guests.

AssA Abloy Hospitality

The world leader in hotel security.

Mobile Access

your property security is no place to fall behind. That’s why AssA Abloy Hospitality has been leading the industry in security technology innovation for over 40 years, since introducing the world’s first electronic lock. Today, millions of guests around the globe are secured by our advanced solutions, including VingCard locks, Elsafe in-room safes, mobile access and integrated software platforms. With worldwide service and support in more than 166 countries, AssA Abloy Hospitality helps you put security out front and keep it out front.

VingCard Essence lock

VingCard Allure lock

Elsafe safes 1 300 796 233




t technology Keeping Guests Connected:

You, me and the USB: “where can we charge our phones?” WHEN THERE’S ONLY SO MUCH BANDWIDTH FLOATING AROUND, IT’S NOT EASY BEING A GUEST. (IT MUST BE EVEN WORSE BEING A MANAGER.) PARTICULARLY FOR INTERNATIONAL GUESTS WHO ARE USED TO SUPER-FAST SPEEDS IN THE UK, US AND MUCH OF ASIA, AUSTRALIAN WIFI CAN BE UTTERLY FRUSTRATING. Of course, there’s still a scale of good to bad to worse and depending on location, size and structure, internet quality can still be great. Still, there’s a special kind of annoying that is particular to slow (or absent) internet when you’re paying for a room.

Run, jump, fly on the wifi Getting your guests online is the first hurdle. This requires effort, investment and ongoing maintenance or upgrades. The second hurdle is keeping your guests online and this requires, you guessed it, effort, investment and ongoing maintenance. I know, I know, you know this already. There’s lots of information out there (and in our mags) about how to check your bandwidth and choose the best suppliers for your needs. You need to weigh up whether it’s better to charge guests for higher quality speed or give them a lower quality for free. Hell, you could even be #goals and give them the higher quality for free. That’ll get you brownie points, and maybe some welcome social media publicity. Depending on your location, size, etc., it could also cost you the Earth but there’s no way to know for sure until you speak with a respected supplier. The bottom line is that you need your guests to use your wifi if you want them exposed to your inhouse vouchers and deals; if you want them to drink in your bar at happy hour, or book something in your spa, or sign up to your franchise newsletter, or click on the paid ads you have on your sign-in page, or check-in to your property on Facebook, post photos to Instagram, Tweet about how much they love the coffee in your newly refurbished lobby-space. There is a plethora of reasons to get your guests on your network. Having them sign-in is also a terrific way to survey them; people are much more likely to answer five questions about your property if there’s a Netflix marathon at the end of it. So, it’s super beneficial to have guests on the in-house wifi, but how? And once they’re on, how can you get them to stay on for longer, even when they have to pay to access it? There are also some slightly more out-of-the-box ideas that might give you a leg up in tougher times…

Comfy, clever, easy does it The first rule of thumb for any endeavour of persuasion is to make it easy. Easy as pie, in fact. If it sounds too hard, it’s a no-go. If I have to create an account, verify by email, change a password, type in my credit card details, wait 20 minutes for the confirmation to come through, then find out I can only sign-in one device at a time even from behind the paywall – I’m out. As a guest, all you want is to be able to type in a password and go: check your social media, maybe do some work, send some emails, watch a bit of YouTube or Netflix, then do something else.




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t technology Keeping Guests Connected:

If an accom provider makes it too hard for guests to connect to the wifi, they’re making it difficult for their guests to relax. When you’re shopping for an upgrade or looking to improve your wifi service – try logging in yourself! How long does it take? How many steps do you have to go through? Is there a wifi password pinned to the minibar or in-room welcome booklet or do guests have to call reception to get it? Don’t make them sweat. People don’t generally log-on when they’re going for a jog, or they’re kept busy socialising in the bar or out shopping. They log into a wifi portal when they’re chilled out, lounging on a bed or sofa, sipping hot drinks or ordering room service. Generally, the comfier they are, the more likely they are to connect to your network. Can your guests charge their laptops while they sit comfortably in your café or restaurant or lobby? I’ve seen charging stations in the middle of dining tables and USB ports in sofa-arms and chair-legs. Can your guests use their smartphones comfortably in bed while it’s charging and they’re lying on a stack of pillows, half-watching TV? If the only sockets or USBs in your guestrooms are hidden in a corner of the room or at a desk, you need a rethink. Cleverness. Never to be underestimated, clever incentives rarely fail. Most establishments think to request email addresses but what about social media handles? If you have your guests’ Instagram names you can tag and share photos, encourage engagement and promotion. Small touches like personalised cocktails at the bar, latte art requests or selfies at ‘recommended selfie spots’ are all real-world clickbait moves. People are more likely to make a fuss about something online if it feels special to them; mostly because it’s the special things that get attention. So, think about clever little ways you can boost engagement.

The kids are on to something Children are big on devices. It’s not unusual these days to see a sevenyear-old with a smartphone, or a family with five iPads and three kids.



If I have to create an account, verify by email, change a password, type in my credit card details, wait 20 minutes for the confirmation to come through, then find out I can only sign-in one device at a time even from behind the paywall – I’m out

Free games, no matter how simple, are great ways to keep children entertained and online. Parents will love and appreciate the thought (and safety) of child-friendly web content. Perhaps a glorified puzzle on your sign-in page, or a Pokémon Go-style map of in-room treasures to be discovered (fairies painted inside wardrobes, dragons guarding minibar ice drawers or mice stickers hiding on walls behind chairs). This type of thing would work especially well if your location doesn’t support wifi that is fast enough to enable video streaming. When YouTube’s away, the children can play. Keeping guests connected isn’t just about quantity. It’s about the guest experience; technology shouldn’t be thought of as a separate genre of hotel marketing. It’s a tool you can use to build a positive relationship with the people who want to spend their holiday at your property. By Rosie Clarke, Editor


technology t NBN:

Is NBN coming to you soon?

By Judy Senn Director, Time Out Internet

HOW WILL IT BE DELIVERED TO YOUR COMPLEX? FTTP, FTTN, FTTPD: WHAT DOES IT ALL EVEN MEAN? There has been a bevy of activity on the streets of Australia lately with the ramp up of the rollout of the NBN with NBN Co and Telstra vans working away to install the infrastructure required to roll it out. I now know we are to be connected to the NBN via FTTN – fibre to the node technology. Our area on the Sunshine Coast has seen 'nodes' installed around town. I know this because there is a node around the corner and while being installed, we lost our telephone line and internet connection for four days. I shudder whenever I see work in the pits, pillars and nodes around town, worried about our service being disconnected again and also our customer’s services which some have been affected also. But what does FTTN – fibre to the node - even mean, and what will it give us? Researching this article took me straight to the NBN Co’s website where I was advised that “The nbn™ network is one of the most advanced technology projects in Australian history – but understanding how it gets to you is easy”. 'Awesome', I thought. 'Easy', they say. So here is my best attempt to unravel the terminology behind the NBN technology and how it may be delivered to your complex. Speed – NBN Co offer the following internet connection speeds (up-to) nbn 12, 25, nbn 50, nbn 100 – this is Megabits per second (Mbps). Service providers - Service providers will have access to these speeds for your area, however they may not offer them as available plans. They may not offer unlimited monthly data either. You need to shop around and get the fastest speed and the most data per month you can, particularly if you use the connection for your guest wifi system. Unlimited monthly data is a must. Once the NBN infrastructure is completed in your area, the service provider will manage the final connection to your complex. You don’t have to stay with your current service provider (unless contracted). If you’re under contract, see if it can be upgraded to an NBN plan. We’re hearing stories of providers scaring managers into signing up with them to the NBN as they’re being told their ADSL service will be turned off soon and they’ll lose their telephone number. ADSL and PSTN services will be turned off approximately 18 months after the NBN is available in your area and you should be given plenty of notice. Ensure you’re ready and plan for this. Technology – How you receive the NBN will depend on your location. NBN Co uses a variety of different technologies. FTTN (fibre to the node) – Fibre to the node is where fibre is run to a newly built street cabinet or ‘node’. It allows the NBN network signal to travel over optic fibre from the exchange to the node and connect with the existing copper network to reach your premises. FTTP (fibre to the premises) – Fibre to the premises is where a fibre optic line will be run from the nearest available node, to your premises. FTTP also requires an NBN network device to be installed inside your complex and requires power to operate and only installable by an approved NBN Installer or service provider. FTTB (Fibre to the building) – Fibre to the building is generally used GET YOUR FREE TICKET AT NOVACANCY.COM.AU WITH CODE: AMG17

when connecting an apartment block or similar type of building to the NBN network. A fibre optic line is run to the buildings communications room and existing technology in the building is used to connect apartments. The fibre node in the building communications room is usually a secure cabinet. HFC (hybrid fibre coaxial) – Hybrid fibre coaxial is used where the existing ‘pay TV’ or cable network can be used to reach the premises. A HFC line will be run from the nearest available fibre node to your premises and an NBN network device will need to be installed at the point where the HFC line enters your premises and requires power to operate and only installable by an approved NBN installer or service provider. FTTdp (fibre to the distribution point) – Fibre to the distribution point sits somewhere between FTTN and FTTP in speed, cost and complexity. It’s a new technology that may feature heavily in the future NBN roll out. It alludes to being cheaper than FTTP, faster than FTTN and quick to roll out. FTTdp brings the fibre almost to complexes doorsteps, with the distribution point referring to the individual junction box in the telecommunications pit in the street outside each property. With fibre running to within metres of the property means near-gigabit network speeds can be achieved over the very short run of copper between premises and pit and an upgrade to full fibre to the premises is easily possible in the future. In 2018, fibre to the curb FTTC will replace the term fibre to the distribution-point FTTdp. Fixed wireless connections and SkyMuster services - These types of connections are used mostly in regional, rural and remote areas, where premises are spread out geographically over many square kilometres. Fixed wireless - Fixed wireless is a form of connection where data is sent from a transmission tower located as much as 14km away and travels wirelessly to an antenna on the roof of the complex. It requires an NBN network device to be installed at the point where the cable from the roof antenna enters your complex and requires power to operate and only installable by an approved NBN installer or service provider. SkyMuster - The connection of some remote and rural locations services can be delivered via the SkyMuster satellite. A satellite dish is installed on the premises and receives the NBN network signal from the SkyMuster satellite. SkyMuster connections also require an NBN network device to be installed at the point where the cable from the roof satellite dish enters your complex and requires power to operate and only installable by an approved NBN Installer or service provider. I hope I’ve cleared up a few things. That was easy, wasn’t it? My recommendation is to put your address in the NBN Co’s website and it should tell you when your address has NBN available and the technology that will be used to deliver it. However, with so many different technologies being used to roll out the NBN and some of them being replaced, the information may vary. Don’t settle for the first service provider's quote. Shop around and get what is best for your business and guest wifi system. Be prepared for the changeover. Here’s hoping the NBN is the panacea we have all been waiting for. WINTER 2017


t technology Communication Systems:

Clever communicators communicate cleverly THE COMMUNICATION SYSTEMS ADAPTED AT YOUR PROPERTY CAN BE THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN FLAWLESS SERVICE AND FRUSTRATED GUESTS. It is important to provide your staff with the latest technological advancements so they can excel in their role. If you are in the market for a system overhaul, or even a slight upgrade, there are numerous factors to consider before you move ahead.

Hospitality PBX options The traditional PBX system has been around for as long as the white sheet trend and still provides the hospitality industry with a reliable fall back for effective communication. Not reliant on bandwidth, PBX works where landline phone reception exists, and even the most remote properties at least have this in order to operate. The world of PBX as we know it is forever changing with the entry of the cloud. Now, properties have more freedom to effectively scale their system as their needs grow. When making the move to a hosted PBX, consider the reliability of the provider to ensure network security, the quality of the voice over, the option to scale up and the ease in which it will integrate into your existing PMS system.



There are also plenty of perks available as hospitality features on hosted PBX systems, such as in-room guest features including wake up calls, voicemails, auto attendant, call accounting and room status updates.

Internal communication The quality of your internal communication system is a signpost of how effective your communication is with your guest. If your guest places a request, you need to be able to direct the right person to get the job done in the quickest timeframe. The latest trend is to equip staff with mobile devices, whether standard, wifi SIP phone or SIP-DECT phone as wireless service extensions. Hotel staff, located anywhere in the hotel premises, can respond to the guest requests while on the move. These options have a relatively low cost compared to alternatives, are simple to deploy and offer quality, predictable voice quality. You do, of course, need reliable mobile reception in order to utilise this trend. In the future, technology will move towards full integration, which will be as simple as your team using a SIP-compliant app on their smartphone device, which integrates the PBX system, enabling staff to communicate seamlessly and while mobile. There is, however, still a time and place for two-way radio. Where geographical factors deem internet and service ineffective, a radio system can still deliver the goods. Do your staff a favour and upgrade


technology t

the two-way system to one of the latest digital options. The streamlined handsets are discreet, lightweight and offer features such a LCD screens and messaging services so staff can be allocated their job instantly and effectively without details getting lost in translation. Whether you decide on mobile devices or portable radios, effective internal communications enable your staff to excel in their roles, which will impact your guest experience significantly.

VoIP + SIP telephone systems Both VoIP + SIP technologies provide opportunities for you to save money given both systems utilise your existing infrastructure. Each have their pros and cons and sometimes the two systems are used together. The beauty of SIP is it can be used to send multimedia messages to multiple parties for free, while VoIP can only transmit voice messages. But then SIP can be hard to set up and run and therefore is best suited to properties with an IT team. Traditionally, hotels favour the VoIP system, using it exclusively for front-of-desk and reception communication. However, the trends towards more access to quality wifi has seen a rise in properties upgrading infrastructure and integrating updates into their phone systems throughout their entire properties.

The simple addition of the cloud solution allows you to improve your guest services without the need to buy expensive technology. The latest VoIP services allow simpler access to valet and food services and also provide the opportunity to utilise ad space, allow guests to set their own wake-up calls, schedule valet service, or book reservations at affiliated restaurants.

Guestroom handsets Your guest today is more connected than ever and, therefore, the way you communicate with your guest is evolving. Guests would prefer to use their mobiles as their primary form of communication when staying at your property. Although it is our role to move forward with this technology and offer this mobiles as a form of communication, the in-room handset will still have a vital role in communicating with your guest. It is just the way you use this technology that will evolve. The guest handset has become an extension of the exceptional service you guests receive from front desk with a more personalised approach. Caller ID and welcome messages displayed using your guest’s name, for example. Plus, the guest handset also assists staff by providing room status updates, enabling multiple front desks for efficiency and listen receipts to ensure that guests have heard important messages. By Aimee Ley, Industry Reporter


Talkware’s expertise ranges from Hotel communications systems with a wide range of specialty Guest room phones such as TELEMATRIX, TELEDEX, AEi and BITTEL, to core data networks, WiFi solutions and Guest service applications all seamlessly integrated to your PMS and in house platforms. These solutions can be delivered as traditional on property solutions, or hosted / Cloud above property offerings tailored to your needs and delivering the right solution for the right Hotel, rather than a one size fits all approach.

For more information please contact Rex Lane 02 9819 8900 or or visit GET YOUR FREE TICKET AT NOVACANCY.COM.AU WITH CODE: AMG17 



gf guest facilities Vending Machines:

Vender bender: refresh your guest offering without leaving bumps in the road MY LAST ENCOUNTER WITH AN INTERESTING VENDING MACHINE (NOT A PHRASE I CAN SAY I’VE TYPED BEFORE) WAS WITH AN ULTRA-HEALTHY, VEGAN, PALEO-THEMED INSTALLATION DURING A HOSPITAL VISIT. Not only did I purchase a meal just to experience the novelty of finding a genuinely health-conscious vending machine, but it started a conversation about vending options with my family that carried on into the car-ride home. It might surprise you to find out there are all manner of weird and wonderful vending machine options out there! From underwear, toiletries and junk food to alcohol, luxury goods and beach gear; there really is a vast array of product potential to populate the right machine. This is great news for accommodation providers who are able to anticipate guest needs but might not have the space for an entire shop. Beachside properties could stock a machine with children’s toys and colourful thongs. Airport hotels could stock travel-sized toiletries that guests might have forgotten to place in their hand luggage. Unlike an in-house shop, vending machines can be located in bathrooms, guestrooms, different floors, or even out by the pool. Vending machines themselves come in all different aesthetic styles, shapes and sizes. Of course, not every property suits this type of

installation but for many properties, vending machines could be the ideal guest facility solution. When considering whether a vending machine investment is right for your property, it’s imperative to think about the types of guest you most often cater to. Are there areas of your property where guests congregate for periods of time or frequent? Do you get lots of requests for common

Management and loss control of minibar inventory is a significant issue for many operators in the accommodation industry. Minibars can be replaced by vending machines at convenient locations. Guests can vend their minibar selections using either cash, EFTPOS, tokens or room cards. A vending machine can turn one square metre into a 24-hour revenue stream and benefits to the accommodation industry include: • Minibar replacement for drinks, snacks, health foods, towels and much more • Self-serve sports nutrition and hygiene products for gym areas • Cost savings with the efficient control and management of inventory • Enhanced customer service and experience with consistent availability • Increase productivity with less staff serving load and increase business revenue

For professional advice & tailored solutions call 1300 386 609 or visit 64



guest facilities gf Stay vandal-proof! Don’t forget to maintain security measures by keeping vending machines in supervised areas, ideally where there is CCTV. Most modern vending equipment can now be cashless, minimising the risk of break-ins.

items? Phone chargers and earphones, for example, are items that people tend to forget but can’t bear to be without. Filling a vending machine with items like that in a lobby might be very convenient for your guests. How many convenience shops are near your property? If there’s little within walking distance, there’s a good chance your guests will appreciate vending options. Similarly, what kind of food is accessible to your guests? If your in-house eatery is fine-dining, perhaps having convenient fast food options in a vending machine would go down well. Likewise, if you have lots of fast food chains around, providing some healthy options in a visible and accessible, 24/7 location could be a real winner.

Profits and costs Profits are, of course, another top consideration. So long as you choose the right products to stock for your particular clientele, there should be a solid revenue stream in providing vending options. However, there’s no way to be certain whether operators will make a profit, break-even or suffer a loss until after installation. So, any operators considering a vending machine investment should prepare a spreadsheet model that calculates income from sales versus expenditure on capital and operating costs. Adjusting the number of sales in such a spreadsheet model should give a reasonable idea of the cash-neutral point. Experienced suppliers should be able to provide you with details, such as the average cost of dispense for specific machine types. Machine costs for purchase vary depending not just on technology and physical appearance but also whether the machine is new or used, and whether it’s been imported from overseas. When inquiring with suppliers, ask what materials have been used to construct the machines: plastic tends to be cheaper. One thing to ask is whether the materials and mechanisms are still being manufactured: if not, it could make repairs difficult if something goes wrong. Leasing vending machines rather than purchasing is also possible. Usually this will involve agreeing to keep purchasing the supplier’s consumables. Whether this will prove financially viable is a question of comparison to deals offered by other suppliers. Installation fees, whether you are buying or leasing, should be factored in as well. Depending on what products you want to stock your machine with; you might need to invest in other storage solutions, electrical wiring or even plumbing for the machine might also be necessary. Ask the suppliers you inquire with about the infrastructure required to use their machines. By Rosie Clarke, Editor

Vendco is the distributor for Necta Vending & Coffee Machines in Victoria. As the No.1 Supplier of vending machines in Victoria for the accommodation industry we offer a full range of vending machines such as the Best Selling Melodia which is featured below. We have many other options such as the larger new release Necta Samba Touch, featuring an elevator, 7-inch touch keypad and digital pricing. Food vending machines, such as the Necta Festival, are also an ideal option allowing fresh food to be sold to guests 24/7. Coffee Vending hot beverage vending machines like the best selling Necta Concerto vends coffee, hot chocolate, chicken soup, tea and other hot beverages 24/7 and only starts from $4990 ex gst. Features: • Made in Italy • Product sensor • Low maintenance • Rolling built-in price labels • Delivery bin opens outward for easy retrieval • High capacity - 110x beverages, 40x chips, 13x cookies and 100x confectionery • 6 tray version - 2x can, 1x bottle 1x confectionery and 2x chips/cookie trays (indicative photo shown) • Illuminated & beep touch button keypad • Vandal proof coin entry • LED Lighting • Top 2 trays drop for easy re-filling • H: 1700mm W: 713mm D: 870mm

NECTA MELODIA COMBO VENDING MACHINE • Quality and reliability - Made in Italy • Custom configuration to suit variety of products for guests • Can be optioned with credit card, note acceptors and coin change givers


$3990 EX GST

Authorised distributor for

Perishable items Perishable items will need to be used before they exceed their expiry dates. Particularly in cities, there are companies that can be contracted to deliver new goods and restock the vending machines.


1300 836 326 WINTER 2017


fb food & beverage Hotel Design:

Is there F&B life for Australian hotels beyond the breakfast buffet?

AS A NEW BREED OF AUSTRALIAN HOTELS EMERGE, THE SPOTLIGHT IS INCREASINGLY TURNING ON WHAT FOOD AND BEVERAGE (F&B) OUTLETS WORK IN THE HOTEL ENVIRONMENT. Does a hotel need a celebrity chef to make an outlet work? Does service and product attitude require a radical re-think? Is there more to F&B operations than the ubiquitous breakfast buffet, or should hotels move away from F&B to concentrate on rooms? These are some of the questions Hook Communications principal Peter Hook put to JLL Hotels and Hospitality’s Ross Beardsell, who concluded that yes, F&B can still make a very positive contribution to the hotel experience and bottom line. “Food and beverage is here to stay,” Mr Beardsell confidently stated. “It comes back to design. It comes back to presenting food and beverage as an alternative dining arrangement that looks as though it’s not part of a hotel.” While F&B in Australian hotels has traditionally consisted of a “three meal restaurant experience” including a buffet breakfast and sit-down lunch and dinner menus, Mr Beardsell said that F&B in the 21st century



Does a hotel need a celebrity chef to make an outlet work?

is all about setting the scene and creating an image. “It’s looking at creating a food and beverage environment that sits apart from the hotel and allows the hotel to offer a unique food and beverage experience,” he said. Hotels should not only consider guest dining, but also F&B options for conferences and events. According to Mr Beardsell, there has been a long-held feeling that food for conferences and events is simply “bulk consumer food”, whereas guests now expect menus to be bespoke. In his opinion, achieving a bespoke menu can be as simple as looking local.


food & beverage fb

“It’s about working within regions, looking for produce and wines from those areas and balancing those menus to show a customer that there’s some original flare. That gives a great connection with international conferencing or even local conferencing, but more importantly, it allows chefs in the food and beverage team to put their stamp on the products,” he said. Hiring celebrity chefs appears to be a current trend in hotel F&B; however, this is not essential to the success of a hotel’s dining and catering. Mr Beardsell said there are a number of creative ways to draw attention to your hotel’s menu. “Outsourcing is one way to look at business, and there’s also celebrity chefs, but it’s looking at what style of hotel it is. If it’s a CBD hotel, or if it’s a luxury resort, there might be an opportunity for a celebrity chef. However, it’s balancing the needs of the particular hotel to deliver the ultimate guest experience. It might be more of a case of having chefs with a name designing the menus so that customers or consumers can see that there’s a well-known chef who’s been involved in the design, but not necessarily in delivering the menu,” Mr Beardsell suggested. While it’s important for new hotels to consider their F&B options, it is equally important for existing hotels to rethink their approach to dining. Mr Beardsell said that this is a process of engaging with the operator and owner to work out the best fit for the business. “It’s reviewing what pedestrian flows are, reviewing what the traffic is. There’s a whole series of moving pieces to ultimately arrive at what is the best fit. There’s also return on investment which is about understanding what the competitor analysis is of that restaurant and what the guest profile is within the hotel to ensure that you’re offering that guest the best experience and, more importantly, the experience that is going to increase the profitability of that hotel,” he said. Head over to to find the full video interview with Ross Beardsell. By Lauren Butler, Junior Industry Reporter




h housekeeping New Amenities:

The future has come a long way SINCE THE DAWN OF CIVILISATION, AND POSSIBLY EVEN BEFORE, HUMANS HAVE VALUED BEAUTY AND CLEANLINESS. IN ANCIENT TEXTS AROUND THE WORLD, THERE ARE RECORDS OF PRIMITIVE MIXTURES INCORPORATING HERBS, FLOWERS, FRUITS, GRAIN BY-PRODUCTS AND OTHER THINGS TO CLEAN, SCENT AND BEAUTIFY HAIR. Did you know that the word ‘shampoo’ originally derives from Sanskrit? In fact, the modern term first arose in colonial India in the late 1700s, according to the BBC.

washes, soaps, scrubs, and more, are looking to local flora for innovation and quality to share and impress. For accommodation guests, this provides a delightful opportunity to sample the exoticness of any new location; there’s a reason people are tempted to buy perfumes in airports (it’s not all about the duty-free). Going away on a holiday is an excuse to try something different, feel special, and using different products with uniquely local smells and ingredients is one way for guests to do that.

Modern tribes As we near the end of the 2010s, it’s becoming more and more apparent that monopolies have top billing across many different industries and

Into the 20th century, Europeans started commercialising the venture; selling bottles of boiled soap and liquid fragrance. It wasn’t until the 1930s that shampoo diverges more clearly from soap as manufacturers started to use synthetic surfactants instead. Oils, from coconut to a myriad of essentials, have been used for their moisturising and hair conditioning properties for many centuries as well. Today, companies integrate a range of ingredients to mix their products for desired impact and effect. Some focus on ease-of-use, making sure the liquid falls gracefully out of its container; others play on the senses, swirling together choice oils and essences to create magical fragrances; many companies now focus their intention on the environment, opting to avoid chemical ingredients while others use synthetic materials to create different aesthetics in the product. Whether an amenity range lathers up, foams, shines, quick-dries, softens, soothes, or itches, all comes down to the ingredient and manufacturing decision-making of the company behind it.

cultures. Tourism is no different and guests are now mini-experts on

Ancient vibes

will be most closely acquainted, and they’ll likely be talked about with

In a lot of ways, the new amenities you will notice this year seem to have been inspired by the ancient world. Just like in ancient Indian communities, the makers of some new shampoos, conditioners, body

brand awareness. They could give you a list of the ‘big five’ brands in any sector, including hotels and including beauty and self-care products. Branding therefore presents an interesting dichotomy: you can lean on the confidence-factor where guests will immediately recognise your big branded amenities, or you can surprise and excite with localised or personalised branded products. Both approaches work well when done right. Your guests can breathe a sigh of easy relief upon spotting a product they know and love; they’ll be grateful you thought about what would make them feel most at-home. Alternatively, your guests will linger and fascinate over especially unusual amenity items, wondering what the new smells are and where they can get more to take home. All-in-all, check out the new amenity ranges available this year and see what jumps out to you. These are the products with which your guests family and friends. If people were reviewing perfumed concoctions back in ancient script, you can bet they’ll be doing it next week. By Rosie Clarke, Editor

The most intimate service you provide “Hotels need the ability to be able to customise a guest’s stay, and be able to anticipate a guests’ interests prior to their arrival,” according to business development manager Natalie Bloom from Hunter Amenities International. Guests are becoming more educated on what goes into a product and how it is packaged, she tells AMG. “Premium formulations with ingredients beneficial to hair and skin are desirable, as well


Shampoo and conditioners. Vive Recharge has also been developed as a carbon neutral product, minimising impact on the environment. It is also a ‘Choose Cruelty Free’ product, free of parabens, minerals and phthalates. Guests increasingly desire a more authentic and as environmentally sustainable packaging. “Our new Vive Re-Charge brand offers a multitude of combinations of bottles and tubes to fit a number of price points, together with options of


gender specific products such as a female body emulsion or male facial fuel. “Products such as cleansing conditioners also provide an on-trend alternative to the standard offering of individual

personalised guest experience, so Ms Bloom adds that managers should “appreciate that these products are the most intimate product or service that you are providing for your guests.”



[ R E - C H A R G E ] There’s something magnetic about your first night in a foreign city. The collective beat of crowds, cuisine and local culture calling you to locations unknown. This is no time for tired eyes and early nights; life is made of fortuitous moments and yours are out there awaiting creation. It’s time to Re-Charge. Steeped in spicy citrus with a warm and intoxicating core of dry amber, oud wood and down, the Re-Charge collection is unapologetically bold and unmistakably unique. To obtain your free samples today contact Hunter Amenities on 1800 810 476.


TO L L F R E E 1800 810 476


H U N T E R A M E N I T I E S .CO M . AU

h housekeeping New Amenities:

Luxury travellers are more discerning According to a 2016 Amadeus report, Asia Pacific’s luxury travel market will grow faster than Europe’s through 2025, Interior Images general manager Mark Houston shares with AMG this issue. “Australia will benefit from this trend as Asian travellers look south to find their next luxury destination,” he adds. “Smart hoteliers are preparing to ride this trend. For the first time ever, Australia has two Forbes Traveller Guide rated five-star hotels. “That’s why Interior Images recently relaunched Bulgari amenities in Australia, led by the brand new black tea range. Made in Italy, all five Bulgari tea collections represent excellence in

skincare.” Likewise, Mark notes that Molton Brown has added new fragrances to their original Luxury Collection, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s Royal Warrant to the packaging of its Luxury Collection II, and released the

new 1973 Collection as a nod to its English heritage. Identical in formulation to their retail products, Molton Brown hotel collections are still made in England. “Our best tip for managers

wanting to upgrade their amenities in 2017 is to experience the product first hand. Feel the quality, smell the fragrance and don’t necessarily buy on price. The discerning luxury traveller will know when you have.

Getting guests in sync with regional Australia There’s something especially exciting about hotels wanting to use the sensory properties of hair and body care products to help connect their guests to the local region in which they are located. This is something Jimi KennedyGrant, from Healthpak, shared with AMG this issue.



“We have noticed a huge upsurge in hotels wanting to not only protect their environment with locally made products, but ensure that those products directly connect guests to the area that they are visiting.” In terms of product: “We manufacture all of our own

caps, bottles, labels and. most importantly, the contents. We even make our own essential oils and hydrosols here in the factory to ensure that we have total provenance on our ingredients. “Our Wallawa range formulations are based around iconic Australian indigenous

botanicals like Kakadu plum, tea tree leaf, lemon myrtle and rosella. This creates a direct emotional link between the guest and the local region. “We even make a range for a high-end lodge, where the lavender essential oil used in their cosmetics comes from their actual garden.”




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h housekeeping Ask Mammy:

Wily Irish Mammy’s top housekeeper’s gripes 5. On helpers: “You’ve made your bed now lie in it.”


To those guests who think they are helping by making the bed – newsflash you are not! Mammy says for heaven’s sake leave it to her. She also wishes guests would tell her if they stain or soil the sheets, or leave them in a bundle with a note, so they can be soaked immediately.

When it comes to housekeeping, she is a real cloigeann mór (Irish for ‘clever clogs’) but even she has her moments. Housekeeping can be a thankless task and oftentimes individuals can feel undervalued and underappreciated. Occasionally, even Wily Irish Mammy needs to let rip and this month, she is back with her top eight housekeeping gripes…

6. On families: “It’s nearly two o’clock and not a child in the house washed.”

1. On yer whan: “She had a face on her, to turn milk sour.” Mammy abhors rude and unpleasant guests; you know, the type who only want to find something to moan about or a reason to treat hospitality staff like servants. Don’t they realise they are on holiday? People should relax and enjoy their holiday, not nit-pick at the cleaner!

2. On clothes: “They hung it up on Paddy’s nail.” Mammy has only minutes to clean a room and finds there is nothing more annoying than guests who leave their case or clothes on the floor. This slows her down as she must vacuum around their stuff, and she wonders if they think about the filth they could catch off the carpet.

3. On the idlers: “If me ma was alive today, she’d turn in her grave.” Other cleaners who take shortcuts infuriate Mammy because if a job is worth doing, it is worth doing well. Mammy always notices when a sloven has cleaned a room because she ends up picking up the slack.

4. On the scruffy yokes: “That sand wont shift itself.” Guests who leave trash in the hallway get Mammy really riled. A food tray is okay but general rubbish and beer cans should be disposed of properly; down the rubbish shoot or find a bin. A dirty hallway reflects so terribly on a room attendant and ruins the overall impression of the establishment.



Mammy disapproves of guests who let their kids run wild and allow them to make an unholy mess, just because someone else is cleaning. It is so disrespectful! Put some manners on them.

7. On check out: “Stop acting the maggot!” Mammy wishes guests would behave better, especially the Do Not Disturb lingerers; guests who leave the sign out on check out day. This ruins Mammy’s day, as she must have the rooms ready for her next guests! All the rooms have to be ship-shape within her shift and sometimes this takes the patience of a saint.

8. On misery: “So tight, he still has his holy communion money.” And, finally, Mammy can’t stand guests who forget to tip their housekeepers. Generally, Australians do not expect a tip but when guests leave an awful mess and Mammy has gone above and beyond her duties, she deserves a tip! Despite her gripes and woes, Wily Irish Mammy always looks on the bright side. She loves her job and it can be very rewarding. A big shout out to every hard-working cleaner and housekeeper out there: “As you slide down the banister of life, may the splinters never point in the wrong direction.” Please send us your biggest housekeeping gripes…


h housekeeping Bed Accessories:


Top tips 1. Incorporating your hotel branding in your bedding. Pick up a design element used throughout your branding, a colour scheme or be lavish with your logo. Embroidery is also big news.

guests associate white sheets with cleanliness, so give them what they want and make your sheets the best quality your budget can accommodate.

From the moment your guest steps foot into their suite, they Guests love the brightness a white are evaluating the style, comfort scheme adds to a room and a 2. Emphasis on sheets. Make them white and the very best and cleanliness of the room, fresh white slate gives you the quality your budget can accommodate. and ultimately your brand. When opportunity to incorporate your refurbishing, don’t underestimate brand’s individuality and style 3. Add texture to give your room dimension and warmth. the importance of updating your through the bedding. This is where 4. A decorative pillow. Just one. Accompanied by a pillow bed presentation. Up there with you can really shine with the latest menu. comfort and cleanliness, the look trends in accent colours, texture and feel of the bed is of utmost and by carefully blending branding 5. Throws instead of bed scarfs. concern to your guest. Regardless into your bedding. of trends, your guest will always The halo effect of a white palette want comfort, cleanliness not only emulates associations of and quality. Keep these three cleanliness but it can also work wonders to make a pokey room appear cornerstones at the front of your mind throughout the decision-making bigger. Although we recommend white as your base, an accent colour process to ensure you create a memorable five-star sleeping experience used throughout your room can make a big impact. When selecting an for your guest, without compromise. accent colour, consider your branding and incorporate this colour scheme Trending throughout the soft furnishings including the decorative pillow and throw blanket. We understand trends, transient by nature, should be regarded lightly; however, you want to ensure your bedding upgrade is just that, a step in Texture is your secret ingredient for transforming a flat, lack lustre room the right direction and not a string of fashion faux pas. First up, get your into a multi-dimensional sensory experience. It not only adds layers of basics right with a quality mattress (if you are not including this item in the interest to the room but texture appeals to your guest’s visual and tactile refurbishment then make sure a good mattress topper is high on your list) sensors. Incorporate texture into your bed accessories by adopting a and top-grade sheets. range of finishes for the decorative pillow, throw and bed wrap. Faux Keep your sheets white, this trend is not going anywhere. We know your

suede and woven fabrics are currently on trend and there are great options available that will stand the test of time and regular laundering.

Mainlinen: wow guests with white “First impressions really last, so keeping rooms modern and up-to-date with the latest bedroom trends is key,” says Mainlinen general manager Teighan Donnelly. She adds that simple, elegant white linen is best as it is easy to launder and practicality is



most important. “For that total ‘wow factor’, add a beautiful bedrunner and stylish cushions to suit the room’s aesthetic.” Mainlinen offers a variety of styles catering to all budgets, as Teighan shares: “Our entire Guest Decorator range offers affordable, modern styles that

guests will not forget. Bedrunner sets are not only eye-catching but commercially washable and the look of the room can be simply altered to stay on trend.”

beautiful cushions, bedrunners

The company recommends that managers stick with classic, white bedding. “It’s so versatile and the simple addition of

finished look to any bed. Try a

or plush blankets will bring colour and pop to every bedroom. “Bed wraps and valances give a quilted bed valance for a more tailored, sophisticated look.”

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h housekeeping Bed Accessories:

Incorporating your branding through your bedding is another trend however, this one is all about subtleness. The effectiveness of this exercise is highly dependent on the strength of your branding and how you have utilised branding elements throughout your guest’s journey throughout your property. An excellent way to incorporate branding via your bed accessories can be a beautifully embroidered logo on the decorative cushion, or on the corner of the throw. It can also be as simple as incorporating a design element from your branding throughout the bed accessories such as a pinstripe or ribbon.

Cushions and pillows Careful consideration of the pillows available to your guest can add an element of luxe to their stay. Considering the impact an uncomfortable pillow can have on sleep and the fact that no two guests have the same pillow preferences, a pillow menu is a trending option that solves the conundrum. A pillow menu will really take your guest’s sleeping experience to a new level and reminds your guest their sleep quality is a priority to your brand. Have housekeeping deliver the selected pillows with a freshly wrapped bow and personalised note for extra points. A decorative pillow is the perfect way to incorporate your property’s branding. Despite recent trends, less is more when it comes to decorating your bed with pillows. One carefully selected decorative cushion is ample in addition to regular pillows and this minimalist approach has more

impact. Let’s face it, your decorative pillow is going to be one of the first things to hit the floor once your guest decides to retire for the night. Consider your decorative cushion cover needs to be removed regularly for laundering and therefore fabric quality is of the upmost importance. In addition, the cushion filler needs to be equally high quality to ensure its lifespan endures that of the cover.

Throws To throw or not to throw, that is the question. The latest trends say yes, you should include a throw in your bedding refurbishment, and a carefully considered one at that. Gone are the days of the token extra blanket stored in the cupboard. Guests expect their room to have multiple layers of comfort. And don’t underestimate the impact of an additional texture a beautiful throw or a scarf can add to a room. When deciding on extra fabric products to brighten up your bedroom, consider your property’s location and the need for regular laundering. A fine weave will have different maintenance needs to something more plush or textured. While throws are multi-use, adding decoration and warmth; some properties don't wash them enough, leaving guests at risk for germs and bedbugs. Bed scarves don't have as many guest uses as a throw but they also don't require the level of cleaning maintenance and can have more intricate decoration. Make product choices that best fit your property.

William A McNeil on creating tactile treats “The current trend emphasis in hotel furnishings is on texture and colour, with highlighted design elements to create a visually appealing and tactile treat for guests,” shares Jason Commercial manager Vicki Lugg. Cosiness is a major factor in making your guest’s experience more memorable and design has always played a crucial role in hospitality, especially in defining the hotel’s brand and personality. Vicki advises: “Current design influences are natural materials; cool tones flowing into warm ones, neutral colours and metal finishes. “Our Jason Commercial range


of plush pillows, quilts, mattress protectors and blankets, offer durability and various levels of affordability.” The company also has a deluxe range of linens to aid triple sheeting and a new range of bed runners and decorator cushions. “Patterns are expected to shift from the current high contrasting graphics to more visually soothing elements, while textures will range from soft and rich woven fabrics to heavy, opulent velvets. “The key is personalisation: every space, product and service is an opportunity to offer a personal hotel experience.”



Supplier Profile

housekeeping h


Create the best impression Initial impressions can mean everything to your guests, and at Jason Commercial we recognise this is an important step in creating a welcoming environment for each, and every guest. We have been supplying the Australian Accommodation Industry with commercial bedding for over 50 years, with the comfort of your guests always forefront in our minds. We proudly supply commercial bedding and decorator items to properties across Australia, and are a preferred supplier to Best Western and Golden Chain Hotels. Our product offering includes a large range of quilts, pillows, pillow protectors, mattress toppers and protectors, sheets, quilt covers, bed spreads, comforters, blankets and electric blankets, as well as decorator items such as bed runners and cushions. Jason Commercial strives to enable you to meet all your bedding and decorator requirements and with a new season comes a new look to our decorator range. We are proud to introduce our NEW ‘Regency’ Decorator Collection to our already extensive range in time for spring.

Including patterned and plain fabrics in a number of luxurious colours, pre-order yours now and be ready for a fresh new look in time for the new season. Jason Commercial is your complete bedding solution for all your premises. Our extensive range of pillows and quilts will have each guest sleeping in complete comfort, while our decorator items will give the best initial impression of your property to arriving guests. We make every effort to save you time and money when ordering, with our quality bedding


Jason Commercial is an iconic national brand and has been supplying the Australian Accommodation Industry, for over 50 years.

and decorator items available all year round, through our informative website at competitive prices. Registering for an online ordering account is quick and easy, please visit our website and register your interest, our Jason Commercial Manager will be in contact promptly thereafter to confirm your account. Contact us to today and let us assist you with making the correct decisions about your commercial bedding requirements.


Our range consists of premium quality bedding, bedlinen, towels, soft furnishings and much more; Quilts Pillows Pillow Protectors Mattress Protectors Mattress Toppers Sheets Quilt Cover Sets Bedspreads

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h housekeeping Bed Accessories:

Where have all the bedspreads gone?

Valances When it comes to discreetly hiding the spring cover, there is the option to offer under-bed storage; a big trend, or to cover the spring cover with a bed skirt or decorative bed wrap. Stay on-trend with a bed wrap that offers a streamlined look and is easy to fit and remove for laundering. Faux suede and quilted bed wraps are very much on-trend, and again add texture to your bed setting.

Quilts and covers Triple-sheeting is still popular and this is an easy way to add an element of luxe to your bedding to ensure your guest is always touching a crisp white sheet. When selecting your quilt, consider your location as that will determine the warmth factor and filling of your insert. Also, check the dimensions of your mattress to ensure your quilt insert fits properly. It is very important that your quilt cover completely covers the mattress and sits just a little below the spring box. Ensure your quilt fits nicely within the cover so it looks full and inviting to your guest. Remember, everything on top of the mattress needs to be washable, so selecting the best quality quilt and cover will serve you well until the next refurbishment. Trends aside, your guests want style, comfort and cleanliness when it comes to their hotel bed. Deliver a beautifully tied-together bed setting with an accompanying pillow spray and superb turn-down service and you will be on your way to creating a wow factor that dreams are made of.

There are several trending favourites when it comes to upgrading bedspreads, according to a spokesperson from Vellux Blankets. “In today’s rush to upgrade guestrooms, most original bedspreads have been sacrificed in favour of: white top sheets, of the threesheet variety, perhaps with coloured pillowcases; pastel coloured quilt covers with 30-40cm decorated bands across the feet area; attractive, classically coloured, luxury light-weight and washable blankets with contrast tonal throws. “These three options can be supported by pillowcases that reflect the tones of the feet band or perhaps the valances, which should be

vertical, quilted and in a plain colour.” Vellux supplies products matching these descriptions and cites the benefits associated with these styles. “The advantages include the reduced cost of replacing or laundering heavy bedspreads as many guests tend to jettison them to the floor before sleeping.”

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h housekeeping Paper Products:

Paper that dissolves nice and easily will always be kinder on the planet and this won’t necessarily coincide with a high ply count

Keeping your loo roll squared away

THE MODERN TOILET ROLL: AN ESSENTIAL ITEM ACROSS THE WESTERN WORLD. WE CAN THANK THE BRITS FOR THE PAPER PRODUCT MOST OF US KNOW AND APPRECIATE; FOR, IT IS THE BRITISH PERFORATED PAPER COMPANY THAT IS CREDITED WITH INVENTING A SLIGHTLY CRUDER VERSION WAY BACK IN 1880. Prior to that, a miscellaneous variety of objects and items were used all over the place. A few fun highlights: rocks, corn cobs, sponges, leaves, sticks, sand, soil and even shells. What a lovely history we all share… The decision to sell toilet paper in roll form was born in America, the same nation that invented Tupperware, credit cards, video games and the urinal. An eclectic bunch, Americans. A common misconception about toilet paper, in particular, is that people will put up with lower quality when they’re on a short stay. Not so. Ask any grumpy grandpa and you will quickly discover that paper

quality leaves a lasting impression regardless of locale. If your reception area bathroom boasts luxurious, thick toilet sheets but your guestrooms skimp on quality, you can bet it will set your travelling loo-users’ teeth on edge. Nothing puts a dampener on a holiday quite like thinking you’re being taken for a mug. Consistency is always best. It can be hard to know specifically what ‘quality’ means when it comes to toilet paper because, unless you’re a manufacturer or supplier, you’re unlikely to keep tabs on the technical terms. What you should look out for, or ask about, though, is softness and sustainability. True, these might seem like conflicting notions but here’s the crux of the matter… Consumers (and where toilet paper is concerned, aren’t we all consumers?) tend to judge sheets of toilet paper on their ‘ply’ number much the same way sheets tend to get judged on their thread count. But here’s the thing: ply count doesn’t dictate softness, and it certainly doesn’t always biodegrade as fast as you might hope.

Are your products’ sources sustainable? Now more than ever the trend for sustainable procurement continues, according to Livi spokesperson Arivan Ahmad. He adds that this is not only applicable to paper products but all business products and services in general. “Largely driven by consumer demands and business value propositions, managers need to consider the following when it comes to sustainable procurement: 1.


“Choose products and


services that decrease unnecessary consumption versus demand needed. 2.

“Choose products and services that comply with fair and ethical sourcing standards.”

Arivan says Livi seeks to provide a concise range of paper and hygiene products strictly aimed at improved practicality and usage across business. “Our products are tailored to cater for different usage environments as well as varying traffic levels of each environment.”

The company provides a full chain of custody through PEFC certification, “ensures that claims about products

originating in sustainably managed forests are credible and verifiable throughout the whole supply chain”.


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h housekeeping Paper Products:

In today’s world, ‘high quality’ tends to denote ‘environmentally friendly’, especially for global-minded guests who like to assume that accommodation providers relying on tourism business actually care about the environment. However, the paradox is that ‘luxury’ products are often not the most environmentally sustainable. Paper that dissolves nice and easily will always be kinder on the planet and this won’t necessarily coincide with a high ply count. Softness, on the other hand, is something you (and your guests can judge quite readily. Potentially the best compliment you can receive is none at all – many people will only notice the paper quality if it’s really bad. If you ever receive comparison to ‘tracing paper’, you know a change is in order. Absorbency tends to go together with softness and is a critical factor. This is easy to test yourself, just by spilling some water on a counter and using paper samples to mop it up.

resorts and other providers. Facial tissues and hand towels are a prime example; present in bathrooms, public areas, on desks and coffee tables, bedside and at reception. Paranoid about stories of germs emitted from hand dryers, it’s not unusual for guests to prefer paper hand towels (perhaps even using them to slyly open doors and turn off taps without touching handles directly). When stocking up on these products, find out what packaging you can pair for maximum branding and aesthetic potential.

Traditionally, toilet paper was viewed as something almost taboo; purchased discretely and squirreled away by housekeepers in storage. Today, trendy accommodation types are taking a more rustic approach to their bathroom design, stacking rolls wrapped in old fashioned brown paper and string on shelves and counter-tops. Rolls now come in a wild array of colours, patterns and textures; you can practically personalise with branding if you choose to do so.

Dispensers are another aspect of the paper product world that have to be thought about. Isn’t it annoying when the dispensers are too large for the bathroom cubicles? Your guests shouldn’t have to contort themselves just to use your toilet facilities. Your dispenser selection will largely depend on the type of rolls you choose and most suppliers will have a range to choose from. Consider the size and shape to maximise ease-of-use and make sure that the dispensers themselves are robust enough to last for a while. You also want to make sure the mechanism works well; it shouldn’t sound like a wooden barrel rolling down a brick lane every time you pull out some tissue; the holder inside should also be sturdy enough that it can maintain the weight of whatever roll you want to put inside the dispenser. It would be very annoying (and embarrassing) for your guests if they have to call for help because the roll gets jammed inside, or the dispenser breaks mid-use.

It’s the same with other paper products you find in hotels, motels,

By Rosie Clarke, Editor

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h housekeeping Vacuums:


not the most practical vacuum choice. But, what is the best industry choice?

Conversely, floor cleaning is probably one of the jobs that many of us would be very happy for a robot to take over!

Super power - a well-made, strong and powerful electric motor is essential for optimum suction. The motor spins a fan, sucking in air and dust, catching the small particles, and venting the air out of the other side. In this industry, you cannot avoid the dreaded bed bugs and dust mites, so choosing a powerful vacuum cleaner helps combat these irritants and should be one of your highest priorities. Most dust particles and bed bugs are too small to see through the naked eye. Where a human hair is only 60-70/1000mm, some bed bugs and dust particles are no larger than 5/1000mm and a normal vacuum cleaner may not able to effectively deal with particles this size.

Could automated vacuum cleaners be the biggest and most exciting development in cleaning technology yet? Not only do they provide a handy cleaning solution but they are also quite aesthetically pleasing compared to the humble vacuum cleaner. They even entertain (watch them on YouTube to see for yourself) and offer quirky, smart features such as mapping out the room with in-built cameras, remote controls, and virtual wall features blocking off areas you don’t want to be cleaned. This promise of a cute and smart auto-cleaning system appeals, but can it take the place of the self-effacing vacuum cleaner? One of the handiest appliances ever used, the vacuum cleaner has come a long way since its invention in the 1860s. Let’s be honest, modern day life would be very hard without an upright, backpack or canister vacuum. Their effective design did away with having to clean dust off surfaces by hand, put a stop to scrubbing floors on hands and knees and turned cleaning into a faster, more efficient job. This intelligent robot suction technology seems fun; who wouldn’t want to sit on the sofa, feet up and watch the cute little sucker glide around the floor? It is an easy way to get a boring chore done but, right now, robot vacuums come at a hefty price and not just dollars; reports indicate that they are still not as effective as the standard household vacuum cleaner when it comes to suction and dust capacity. Furthermore, these robots may be the current heroes of many a household but for the accommodation industry, as of now they are



The basic must haves:

An effective filter - if the air sucked in was simply ejected out the other side, along with a large amount of very fine particles, it could be harmful to the user or indeed guests. These particles, if inhaled, could cause damage to the lungs; therefore, the air needs to pass through a fine filter. A HEPA (high efficiency particulate arresting) filter is often used to effectively remove the dust and produce clean air. Once again, dust mites love warm, moist environments and live on skin residue from humans and animals and are a major concern for you and your property as only a good vacuum cleaner with standardised filters will offer efficient enough filtration to remove these sources of irritation. Attachments - you will need some handy essentials. The most effective vacuum cleaners do not just get their super power from a motor, but also from the variety of attachments offered. You need an assortment of sizes and brushes, including some with narrow entry ports that increase suction. By Rosie Clarke, Editor


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h housekeeping Vacuums:

What do housekeepers value? turnaround times can be tight. Another preference, he indicates, is for light and quiet vacuums. In response, Weatherdon’s Nero product weighs 4.6kg and doesn’t exceed 62 decibels.

Vacuums for allergy sufferers “Due to OH&S issues caused by the weight of the units, some users are moving away from backpack vacuums towards canister vacuums,” Tennant Australia’s national distribution manager Cameron McKean shared with AMG. “As a safeguard for allergy sufferers, there is also a move to vacuums fitted with HEPA filtration. HEPA filtration stops microscopic particles being sent back into the air via the vacuums exhaust fan while the vacuum is in operation. Wide-area vacuums are also being used in large spaces to gain efficiency and increase productivity.”

litre vacuum bag and HEPA filtration. The company also suppliers the V-WA-66 and V-WA-76. “To maximise operational efficiency, always check suction hoses are clear and the exhaust filter is clean and as an extra safeguard for allergy sufferers, use a vacuum with HEPA filtration. “Question whether you have the right vacuum for the job at hand.”

Today’s housekeeper values a combination of efficiency and practicality when choosing a vacuum cleaner; it’s about a robust model that is fit for purpose, according to Weatherdon managing director Robert Weatherdon.

Featuring a retractable 10m cord, it has two available sizes with either an 800 or 1200-watt engine. “The replaceable HEPA filter on the 15L commercial vacuum ensures that a higher quality of air is maintained while cleaning,” notes Mr Weatherdon. “The third preference for housekeepers is always for a metal wand. They are robust, long-lasting and not easily snapped or broken.”

“The first preference is for a barrel design. This is because of capacity, which is either 10 or 15-litre. The advantage is, the units don’t need frequent trips to the dumpster to empty or change the vacuum cleaner bag, which is critical in a larger property and equally so in a smaller site where

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housekeeping h Vacuums:

Snapshot supplier view ROBERT WEATHERDON SHARES HIS TOP VACUUMING TIPS EXCLUSIVELY WITH AMG READERS: 1. Keep the filters clean 2. Empty the bag regularly 3. Use the crevice tools for hard-to-get-to spots 4. Don’t take the vacuum to areas it wasn’t intended for

Types of vacuum cleaners: Uprights – do you prefer to use the traditionally more powerful but less agile upright models? This, of course, depends on your terrain. Canister models – others prefer these lighter models, which have become more powerful than before with the onset of new technologies. Backpack models – these are more worker-friendly, with recent versions promising increased productivity and offering more ergonomically friendly designs.

Wet or dry – buyers today do not have to face the ultimate choice between wet or dry varieties of vacuums anymore because vacuums are available for all daily carpet maintenance, providing wet-dry, heavy-duty, cordless, backpack and wide-area vacuum options. These choices have a direct impact on turnaround time and that is important for fast paced accommodations. Moreover, never settle for anything but the highest levels of cleaning power for daily vacuuming and scrubbing; scheduled restorative carpet care; or frequent outdoor walkway sweeping. There is a cleaning solution for every need on the market and selecting the most reliable and effective vacuum for your needs can reduce costs, boost energy savings, and enhance staff safety and productivity. The environment and space throughout your establishment is changeable and each floor surface in your property is unique. After all, an open stairwell is different from a small bar with nooks; or a large, spacious reception area, and consider the hard or carpeted surfaces. Staff safety, ergonomics noise and accessibility are all things that also count. With such a huge variety of products currently available, prioritise your needs and assess what solution is best for you, your environment, the vacuum user and, most importantly, your guests. Don’t be a sucker: choose the vacuum that will achieve the most noticeable results.

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h housekeeping Housekeepers:

The housekeeping training revolution

Larry Mogelonsky Founder, LMA Communications

MODERN ADVANCES IN EMPLOYEE TRAINING AND ONGOING RETRAINING HAVE SUCH PROFOUND BENEFITS THAT IT’S NEAR IMPOSSIBLE FOR ANY SENIOR HOTELIER TO DISREGARD THEIR IMPLEMENTATION. First among these advantages is what’s paid forward to your guests – improved compliance with SOPs, faster service, better staff demeanour and, ultimately, better customer satisfaction. Then there are the back-end benefits, which also impact the bottom-line: better team morale, less employee turnover, greater empowerment, increased productivity and decreased on-boarding costs. Of course, this all relates to technology – putting your internal curriculum onto an online portal; thereby, enabling e-learning. It works because it fosters an environment of micro-learning – that is, allowing your team to learn at their own pace and in bite-sized, modular chunks - both of which are better for knowledge retention over the classical intensive and condensed period of instruction. Additionally, by putting your curriculum online, it frees up your supervisors’ time as well as allows associates to explore other aspects of your operations that are beyond their current job description but nonetheless a subject of interest for prospective lateral promotions. While it may seem too good to be true, obstacles present themselves during the implementation process and in getting your team to adjust to the new system. And these growing pains are most evident than in the housekeeping



department. Likened to the last holdout against the invasion of purely technological processes, your housekeepers are now prone to disruptions on nearly all fronts. Training manuals can be put online or plugged into motion-capture performance tracking stations for new employees to quickly learn the basics before job shadowing begins in earnest. New mobile-centric software platforms offer real-time synchronisation to streamline internal communication, shift priorities on the fly and appease the current demand for 24/7 room readiness to the point where the morning line-up is all but obsolete. And then there are engineering firms working to build robots that can fold laundry and clean rooms, thus eliminating the need for human housekeepers altogether, but this is still at least a few decades away from practicality. Additionally, you must consider the health and safety of your housekeeping team. Unlike most other desk jobs, theirs is one of physical rigour, lending itself to a much higher risk of repetitive strain injuries (RSIs) as well as everything that results from that – lowered team motivation, erratic staff scheduling and long-term disability payouts to cite three. While it’s a much more straightforward line of thought between how technology can benefit your property from a training perspective, there are also significant implications for how it can be utilised to also boost the wellbeing of your team. Firstly, most contemporary SOP training modules teach the proper techniques which minimise injury. Next, there are now platforms with dedicated ergonomic curriculums so that your housekeepers can get in the habit of using the correct muscles for any given cleaning-related task. This is but a quick overview of how technology can work to propel your team into the 21st century and I would highly recommend you investigate your options. I’ve purposely left this article company agnostic for brevity’s sake, but if you’d like the names of a few to help get you started, email me and we’ll discuss what will work best for your specific hotel.

This is but a quick overview of how technology can work to propel your team into the 21st century NOVACANCY ACCOMMODATION BUSINESS EXPO @ ICC SYDNEY EXHIBITION CENTRE, 1-2 NOVEMBER 2017



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functionality are a key component of a purchase decision. That is particularly the case for our accommodation clients. Our centralised manufacturing gives us the ability to produce a wider range of products, tailoring to very specific requirements.”

Our History “We are a family owned and run mattress manufacturer based in Melbourne with a strong reputation for producing high quality affordable, and premium mattresses for two generations.” says David Sapuppo, Director of Sales and Marketing of Comfort Sleep Bedding. The Sapuppo family started crafting mattresses in 1981 and since then, have been a constant supplier to the Australian retailers and accommodation sector. Never settling, Comfort Sleep continues to innovate with new technologies and manufacturing techniques delivering unrivalled choice to retailers and hotels alike.

Spurred by the growing demand for their premium mattresses, Comfort Sleep has expanded production facilities and product development to continue to exceed expectations of both product quality and customer service.

Our Achievement Our Philosophy David attributes Comfort Sleep’s successes to the persistent development of new products, and the central tenant of customised bedding solutions. “We have always been understanding that both budgets and

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pr property Management Rights:

The ultimate lifestyle business Management rights is an integral part of Queensland’s infrastructure, especially within the accommodation sector. It is doubtful that the state’s tourist infrastructure would have grown to the extent it has without management rights over the past five decades. As well as providing the infrastructure, Queensland’s multi-billiondollar management rights has delivered a lasting, profitable income for mum-and-dad investors, partnerships and small business through to substantial corporates. As a regulated industry, management rights operates in a diversity of retail, commercial, permanent residential, student and holiday complexes in strata and community title properties. Management rights provides an effective way for a strata title property to operate when a number of units are owned by investors who want to maintain an active role in the operation of their investment. Queensland did not originate strata title legislation worldwide, or even in Australia, but it did perfect it. To look at the first “strata title” laws you need to go back to the 1804 Napoleonic Code but, in modern terms, the first condominium law passed was in Puerto Rico in 1958 followed by the Utah Condominium Act of 1960 in mainland US that made it possible for Graystone Manor to be built as the first strata titled condominium. The initial Australian strata titles legislation was enacted in 1961 when



Properties can range from resorts with only a handful of units up to multi-milliondollar high rises the New South Wales parliament passed the Conveyancing (Strata Titles) Act 1961. The first Queensland legislation was the Building Units and Group Titles Act in 1965, and this has been refined over decades with the Body Corporate and Community Management Act that initiated major industry reforms in 1994 and 1997 that saw the creation of a range of accommodation modules. The process of legislative refinement continues and this year the BCCM Act is again under active review. Queensland has more than 43,000 strata schemes with 405,000 units that are subject to the BCCM Act. The Gold Coast was the first region to embrace management rights and is, today, the epicentre of the industry but it flourishes in Brisbane, Sunshine Coast, Tropical North Queensland and most vacation areas of the state.


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Essentially, a management rights business involves the owner of the business enjoying a contractual agreement with the body corporate of a multi-unit complex to supply certain services, in exchange for a salary and the right to earn further commission and services income from individual owners in the complex. The manager also purchases the manager's unit within the complex giving them a vested and financial interest in the successful performance of the complex. The practical nature of the work undertaken by resident managers and a range of service providers and industry operators are needed to attract not just visitors, but investors to ensure that the facilities and services that make a Queensland holiday are readily available onsite. The two main functions of the resident manager are caretaking (which includes managing the physical asset of the owners, security, bookings, guest services, trust fund management and body corporate/unit owner liaison) and the letting responsibilities (the resident manager is licensed to act as agent for investor owners who choose to appoint him as agent). Management rights has always been a sound investment and has maintained steady growth in Queensland with around 450,000 unit owners and an estimated 1.1 million people living in strata title properties at this time. This is only going to grow with more and more people finding home ownership not within their grasp. Strata title renting or ownership can provide an economic means of stable accommodation with resortstyle facilities not possible in stand-alone houses.

Rights can be acquired off-the-plan, as newbuilds or already functioning businesses and banks are most friendly to financing management rights ventures sale potential. It provides a valuable income venture for family businesses, retirees, silent partners and other investors with a considerable lifestyle advantage, albeit 24/7/365. Properties can range from resorts with only a handful of units up to multi-million-dollar high rises. The rights can be acquired off-the-plan, as newbuilds or already functioning businesses and banks are most friendly to financing management rights ventures. Backing up investors is a solid force of solicitors, accountants, financiers and brokers that have unparalleled expertise in management rights to seamlessly, hassle-free guide and assist those that enter this incredible lifestyle venture. By Graham Vercoe, Industry Reporter

This has led to the the growth of MHEs – manufactured housing estates. This is envisaged to be the biggest growth market of the future. This new model is seeing large parcels of greenfield land on the outskirts of towns and cities being converted into this highly profitable new model. As more empty-nesters seek to downsize in later life, apartments, over50s communities, age care and gated retirement villages will be major growth areas for strata and community title. As well, tourism is booming. Queensland alone hosted 2.6 million international visitors in the year ended March 2017, spending $5183 million during an average 21-night stay; the Gold Coast receiving more than one million of those. The number of international visitors to Tropical North Queensland grew 15.3 percent to a record 901,000, while 837,000 people (up 16.2 percent) travelled to the region specifically for holidays. Those international visitors to Queensland spent $5.2 billion - equivalent of $100 million every week - around the state over the same period. Most of these stayed in strata title hotels, resorts and apartment complexes leading to above average occupancy rates. Queensland’s tourism growth will continue to flourish with an added boost next year with the Commonwealth Games bringing in more than 6600 competitors plus their entourages and spectators. The management rights industry continues to provide a very important commercial role in the diversity of managing the day-to-day growth and issues of density living and will continue to be an integral driving force in ensuring that the growth of community living is responsibly managed by a group of experienced people focussed on delivering outcomes for the benefit of all stakeholders. Many people regard management rights as the ultimate home-based business, offering lifestyle, excellent return on investment and good reGET YOUR FREE TICKET AT NOVACANCY.COM.AU WITH CODE: AMG17 

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pr property Accom Properties:

Buyers agree, Accom Properties has been well overdue for years ACCOM PROPERTIES: THE WEBSITE HUB FOR BUYERS AND SELLERS OF HOTELS, RESORTS, MOTELS, MANAGEMENT RIGHTS, HOLIDAY PARKS, APARTMENT BUILDINGS AND OTHER COMMERCIAL PROPERTIES, HAS MOVED INTO ITS FOURTH MONTH OF OPERATION. With growing website traffic numbers and leads generated for Accom Properties’ commercial partners, which have now doubled in the last month, the portal continues to go from strength-to-strength; providing agencies a much-needed alternative to current third-party portals. Continued search engine marketing, strategic banner display media, internal electronic direct mail and (of course) print media coverage in Resort News as well as sister-publication, Accom Management Guide have all proven successful in driving qualified buyers to the portal as we ramp up, optimise and deliver quality leads for all partners. We also continue to build out the site with unique industry content, guides, special reports and regional overviews: increasing reach and frequency, leading to higher quality scores and increased organic traffic numbers.

A website for buyers/ sellers such as the Accom Properties has been well overdue for years. Buyers don’t want to view multiple websites to see what’s for sale in a particular region or town, they want all properties on the market with relevant criteria at their fingertips now and you've been able to provide a platform which is fantastic. Well done! - Brett Salter, National Accommodation Manager, ALH Group

Customer feedback on the portal has been fantastic, with customer Brett Salter, the national accommodation manager at ALH Group, commenting: “A website for buyers/sellers such as the Accom Properties has been well overdue for years. Buyers don’t want to view multiple websites to see what’s for sale in a particular region or town, they want all properties on the market with relevant criteria at their fingertips now and you've been able to provide a platform which is fantastic. Well done!” Dave Wright, business development manager, commented: “As we move into the next stage of the portals evolution, and grow our brand equity and footprint, each milestone we reach feeds our hunger to become the market leader in this key vertical. Our in-depth lead tracking and reporting has also proven a unique service not provided by our competitors and a truly unique selling point.”



Currently, Accom Properties ranks first or second on paid search for all major related keywords. As of July 20, the portal had seen over 8300 sessions (from launch-date 13/4/17), with average session durations of five minutes and eight seconds; each session viewing an average of five to six listings. Website banner impressions are over 520,000 and our monthly unique users are over 2100 in a relatively niche market - a great result. The audience demographic understandably skews towards older, with 61.29 percent of users over 45 years of age and a 60/40 split of male to female. The next phase of the continued marketing campaign rolls forward with organic site traffic on critical keywords a focus and gains being made to reach page one. Integrated print media also continues combined with strategic digital display marketing.

Let us know what you think of the portal!


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Preferred Supplier Programme assisting the industry

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It allows managers to access industry specialists who are committed to the highest levels of service and dedicated to the accommodation and hospitality industries. This is extremely helpful for all accommodation providers but especially new managers as it allows them to benefit from the positive experiences other managers have had with their suppliers. Listed below are the stages of the process that ensure only the best industry suppliers can participate in the Preferred Supplier Programme: 1. All suppliers must receive a nomination from a property currently using their services that is completely satisfied with their levels of service and are prepared to recommend them to another complex in the industry (ie. if asked by another manager they could comfortably recommend the required supplier). 2. All nominations received are then qualified through a secondary questionnaire process to ensure nominated suppliers are able to provide the highest levels of service required and expected by managers. 3. Suppliers that still qualify are then asked to commit to the required levels of service for the next 12 months guaranteeing their commitment to the industry. 4. Subject to the satisfaction of these processes and commitments suppliers then go on to the Preferred Supplier Database. Only Preferred Suppliers in this database have the opportunity to utilise the Preferred Supplier logo and make their contact details available to managers via the Preferred Supplier Directory, located in every issue of the Accom Management Guide and online at 5. Preferred suppliers have their status reviewed every 12 months to ensure they still qualify and that their commitment to the industry is being met. With these criteria in place it means that you as a manager have access to a complete range of specialist suppliers who are actively seeking to improve their services to the accommodation industry. For your own peace of mind when dealing with any supplier ask if they are a Preferred Supplier. This can be verified by viewing a Preferred Supplier logo – made available for use in any of their stationery or marketing material or more simply by locating them in the Preferred Supplier Directory. So when looking for products or services give yourself the peace of mind that you are dealing with a recognised industry specialist and support these suppliers who are committed to servicing your needs. ACCOM MANAGEMENT GUIDE

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Accom Management Guide - Winter 2017  

Issue 60

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