Monthly Archives: June 2014

Hospitality Industry Legal Update: “Blame Flies Over Drowning Death in Seattle Hotel Pool”

“…The lawsuit claims that Deboch’s body was dragged by suction from a pump to a drain in the middle of the deep end,WA pool where it was held for nearly three hours. The suit claims that the pump’s emergency shut-off, which would have released suction after detecting a blockage, had failed. The suit also claims poor water quality prevented rescue attempts by firefighters…”

The family of a man who drowned a year ago in the swimming pool at the Quality Inn & Suites Seattle Center has filed a wrongful-death suit against the owners of the hotel, claiming poor maintenance made the water unusually murky and contributed to a botched rescue operation by firefighters.

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Filed under Guest Issues, Hotel Industry, Liability, Maintenance, Management And Ownership, Pool And Spa

Hospitality Industry ADA Update: “Best Western Responds to Property That Refused Family With Service Dog”

“…Under the Americans with Disabilities Act,service dogservice animals can accompany people with disabilities in all areas where members of the public are allowed. Staffers are allowed to only ask two questions: Whether the dog is a service animal and what tasks he has been trained to perform…”

Best Western International has responded to its Baton Rouge property that refused the reservation of a North Carolina family traveling with a service dog by temporarily restricting the hotel from accepting reservations.

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Filed under Claims, Employee Practices, Guest Issues, Hotel Industry, Hotel Restaurant, Management And Ownership, Training

Hospitality Industry Management Update: “Hot-Sheets Bronx Motel Kept Bloody Mattress in Room Years After Customer Died of Overdose on Bed”

“…A room attendant who photographed the soiled mattress in room 230 weeksbronx hotel before the inspection told an arbitrator it had been in use up until April, 2014…The firm also found that hotel management had failed to properly train staff on how to handle sheets and towels contaminated with human waste and other substances…”

Working in this Bronx motel is a bloody hell.

The owners of a hot-sheet motel where union laborers have been protesting wage and benefits cuts failed to replace a bloody mattress two years after a dead man was found on the bed, workers claim.

Owner Ankoor Naik has also ignored two independent reports that found inadequate training and protection for employees at the 94-unit flophouse despite hazardous conditions and bedbug infestations, workers and safety experts attest.

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Filed under Bed Bugs, Claims, Employee Practices, Guest Issues, Health, Hotel Industry, Maintenance, Management And Ownership, Training

Hospitality Industry Management Update: “Should You Use Internal or External PR Staff?”

“…But in certain situations, outside agencies can bring their own set of attributes, including: a fresh, “out-of-the-box” perspective;Meeting specialized expertise on such issues as brand/property marketing or positioning, big events, labor relations, financial communications and crisis work; digital/social media; specific media contacts; and arms-and-legs support for internal staff. Additionally, from a cost standpoint, you can turn the faucet on and off as needed…”

When tackling a public relations issue (positive or negative), be it at the property or at a corporate level, the factor to be weighed most carefully and objectively is the understanding as to what resources are at your disposal and how they should be utilized.

Generally speaking, the most important decision is whether to use internal PR staff (to the extent it exists) or an outside PR firm. There is no one right answer, but this large and potentially expensive decision does require several factors to be carefully considered.

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Filed under Hotel Industry, Management And Ownership, Social Media

Hospitality Industry Liability Update: “Hotels Don’t Need CO Alarms, New Rules Say”

“…CO is a very real danger, and CO alarms should be in hotel rooms,”CO says Stephen Thom, a University of Maryland professor of emergency medicine and a CO specialist. “CO incidents happen in every major city regularly, and people only pay attention to the need for CO detectors when there is a tragedy…”

New international building and fire codes that will be published this summer may provide hotel guests less protection from deadly carbon monoxide.

The 2015 codes eliminate a 2012 requirement that required a CO alarm in each guest room or a detection system in all common areas, according to Michael O’Brian, a member of an International Code Council committee that recommended the new codes.

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Filed under Guest Issues, Health, Hotel Industry, Injuries, Liability, Management And Ownership, Risk Management, Technology

Hospitality Industry Security Update: “Navigating Concerns and Identifying Solutions”

“…Hotels are held to extraordinarily high standards with regard to safety and It is critically important that all hotel staff be trained on appropriate security procedures for all high traffic areas, including the lobby, front desk, baggage storage area, guest entry points, valet, and parking lot and receiving dock areas..”

A single act of crime on your property could diminish your brand.

Business and recreational travelers demand safe and secure hotel accommodations, as well as responsive and friendly customer service. How can hoteliers ensure that their property provides as secure an environment as possible, while maintaining friendly customer service?

Best practices for protecting sensitive business information while making people productive from

As Warren Buffet said, “it takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.”

With that said, here are nine things to consider when it comes to blending hospitality and security.

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Filed under Guest Issues, Hotel Industry, Management And Ownership, Risk Management, Technology, Training

Hospitality Industry Health Update: “Food and Water Quality an Ongoing Challenge for Hotels”

“…While a wide variation of food and water quality practices exists from country to country,water it’s a misconception that safety concerns are limited to poor areas in developing regions. Many germs have no boundaries, so the NSF StaySafer program will play an important role in establishing a universal set of standards that can be used as a benchmark and complement local requirements…”

From the buffet salad bar greens to the ice clinking in drinks served poolside, hotel administrators are finding that protecting guests from food and water illness outbreaks is a continuous challenge.

It’s also a necessary undertaking to demonstrate the hotel’s commitment to its patrons’ well being. Travelers won’t soon forget the awful stomach cramps if they experience a sickness during their stay, and such episodes can cause nearly irreversible damages to a hotel’s reputation.

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For a brief video on some of the steps you can take to help prevent Norovirus outbreak at your hotel, check out the video below:

Petra Risk Solutions’ Loss Control Manager, Matt Karp, offers a P3 Hospitality Risk Report – ‘Preventing Norovirus at Your Property’. 

P3 ( Petra Plus Process) is the Risk Management Division of Petra Risk Solutions – America ’s largest independent insurance brokerage devoted exclusively to the hospitality marketplace.

For more information on Petra and P3 visit or call 800.466.8951.

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Filed under Food Illnesses, Guest Issues, Health, Hotel Bar, Hotel Restaurant, Maintenance, Management And Ownership, Risk Management

Hospitality Industry Technology Update: “Handheld Hospitality to Showcase SmartHuest App at HITEC 2014”

“…With SmartGuest, hotels can provide their guests with up-to-date information on hotel services and activities,handheld hospitality including special offers, room service, and restaurant menu selections.  Management can also send notifications of any kind in real time…SmartGuest also offers the options of sharing information on social media, or one-click-dialing or emailing for reservations.  In addition, quick search and GPS mapping allow guests to find their way in and around the hotel properties with the touch of a finger…”

HandHeld Hospitality, LLC, a leader in mobile hospitality technology, announced today that it will showcase its SmartGuest app at HITEC 2014, the world’s largest hospitality technology show.  SmartGuest is a customizable application that enables hotels to communicate directly with guests and increase revenue.

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Hospitality Industry Risk Management Update: “Why You Need to Track Your Travelers”

“…Another factor reducing traveler safety is lack of awareness by travelers themselves about the risks they might encounter, experts said.risk management A recent survey by travel assistance provider International SOS found that while most international travelers carry smart phones, nearly three-quarters (73%) do not use travel-related applications before or during travel. Survey respondents said they would like information about medical services and risks in their destination – but apparently they don’t want it badly enough to bother looking…”

Do you know where your travelers are? Sure, you say. “I’ve got some people in Europe and a bunch headed for a meeting in the Bahamas.” Sorry, that’s not enough information. You need more than a general idea of where your travelers are, according to safety and security experts. Not knowing where travelers are or the risks they could encounter can open your company to legal and financial liability.

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Filed under Guest Issues, Hotel Industry, Management And Ownership, Risk Management, Technology

Hospitality Industry Legal Update: “Atlantic City ‘Fake’ FBI Agent Convicted of Casino-Hotel Robbery”

“…With the assistance of Borgata security, police located and arrested Jonathan P. Zembreski,new jersey casino then 32, of East Northport, N.Y., inside the casino. Zembreski was charged with robbery and impersonating a public servant or law enforcement officer and lodged in the Atlantic County Justice Facility in default of $200,000 bail…”

A New York State man has been convicted of impersonating an FBI agent inside an Atlantic City casino-hotel last year in order to gain entry to a hotel room and rob the occupant.

On March 1, 2013 at 3:49 a.m., Atlantic City police responded to the Borgata Hotel and Casino for a report of a strong-arm robbery that had occurred inside the hotel/casino.

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Filed under Crime, Guest Issues, Hotel Industry, Management And Ownership, Risk Management, Theft