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MARKHAM, ONTARIO, November 16, 2021 — Through a new integration partnership with foreUP, the fastest-growing point-of-sale and tee-time management software company in the golf industry, independent hotels, luxury resorts, conference centers, and vacation rentals with golf courses running on the Maestro cloud or on-premise Web browser property-management system can now give guests and staff significant conveniences. Any associate assisting guests with reservations or activity bookings can access the property’s golf course tee sheet, review green/cart fees, and book/cancel/reschedule tee times without ever leaving the Maestro PMS. In addition, all retail and/or food-and-beverage transactions originating within the foreUp POS at a golf course (or multiple golf courses) can post charges directly to the guests’ room or house account via Maestro. Not only does this give staff the ability to create more complete Single Guest Itineraries (SGI), but the streamlined service will drive revenues, improve operational efficiencies, and boost guest satisfaction and loyalty.

 

“The integration between foreUP and Maestro offers true SGI functionality — something we consider to be the holy grail in the resort space,” said Edward Baker, foreUp Account Executive. “By enabling guests to book their rooms plus all activities during their stays (including dinner reservations, spa, and golf, etc.) in one system, it makes the process very easy for the guest and gives the resort the ultimate control and visibility into their customer’s preferences and buying behavior.”

 

More than 800 golf courses worldwide run on foreUP’s all-in-one platform, which — in addition to tee-sheet and point-of sale-software — hosts a complete suite of cloud-based tools, including inventory management, billing, online booking, text, email and web marketing, reporting, food-and-beverage and more. A constantly expanding app store enables foreUP customers to authorize integrations with a host of relevant apps, offering everything from dynamic pricing solutions to electronic range dispenser integrations.

 

Maestro PMS is an established provider of sophisticated Web browser-based property-management solutions in the cloud or on-premises comprised of integrated and a la carte modular solutions and mobile web apps that support a touchless guest and staff experience. Powering leading independent hotel and resort groups with innovative technology and a client-first service culture, Maestro PMS is a natural choice for organizations looking to centralize their operation seamlessly across all of their departments and achieve a 360 degree view of the guest across the operation in a single database.

 

Integration on Par with Guest Expectations

 

“With golf itineraries and transaction postings now part of the Maestro Activities module via our integration to foreUP, lodging destinations with golf courses can increase revenues and guest satisfaction simultaneously,” said Warren Dehan, Maestro President. “Delivering a powerful single guest profile with full history enables our customers to acknowledge their guests’ personal preferences and anticipate their needs before they happen. This integration also supports Maestro’s Gift Card module, so guests can settle their account at the Pro Shop or Club House using a gift card which will then appear automatically as a recognized form of payment within Maestro. It’s convenience at its best, and it’s just one more way that Maestro is always evolving to make our customers more successful.

 

“I’ve known the foreUP team for some time, and I am impressed with both the product and the people,” Dehan said. “This integration was not only important to develop for our many customers with golf courses, but it was extremely easy to do because foreUP has such an accommodating and cooperative team. We are thrilled to finally be bringing this functionality to our growing portfolio.”

 

For more information on Maestro PMS, visit www.maestropms.com. For information on foreUP, visit www.foreup.com.

 
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(SAN FRANCISCO, CA) November 9, 2021 -- Thanx, a leading guest engagement and retention platform for brick-and-mortar retailers, today announces the launch of several new capabilities ahead of their upcoming Loyalty 3.0 reveal in 2022, a response to what Thanx has coined “the loyalty revolution” happening in restaurant and retail.

The forthcoming Loyalty 3.0 initiativefeatures intuitive tools for activating customer data while offering unprecedented flexibility and customizability over loyalty program architecture, making it easy for brands to create distinct experiences tailored to the individual. Thanx’s decision to revamp their loyalty platform coincides with the loyalty revolution taking the restaurant and retail industry by storm.

“While the concept of loyalty is certainly not new, for many retailers, especially restaurants, the COVID-19 pandemic shined a light on the importance of capturing customer data. The flood of new programs to the market including the recent program launches of McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King, and Popeye’s, highlight the importance of differentiating and personalizing the guest experience to better serve individuals,” says Zach Goldstein, founder, and CEO of Thanx.

While most of the details behind the Loyalty 3.0 announcement will not be released until December, Thanx is announcing select capabilities available to customers today, including Lifecycle Insights and Recommendations and Automated A/B Testing.

“As part of our mission to make personalized loyalty and marketing easy, we want to offer these new capabilities to our customers as quickly as possible and to share a sneak peek of what’s to come in the new year,” says Goldstein.

With Lifecycle Insights and Recommendations, Thanx identifies the highest impact areas of improvement in a merchant’s conversion funnel and recommends the best ways to improve customer lifetime value. Lifecycle Recommendations quantify conversion rates and make suggestions based on real revenue implications. For example, alerting merchants to the opportunity to generate $50k in revenue by converting 3% of trial customers to active status.

Thanx’s Automated A/B Testing gives merchants the ability to A/B test complete messaging, offers, and distribution channels and then automate the winning variant with one-click, eliminating the time, guesswork, and manual work required with other tools. Thanx allows you to automate and fine-tune the entire customer journey and in doing so, iteratively increase revenue per customer and reduce unnecessary promotions.

Jennifer Faren, VP of Marketing at Hopdoddy Burger Bar explains “Our customers expect interactions that are relevant and personalized, but up until now, 1:1 marketing has been difficult to do at scale without a big team. Now, with Thanx, we can understand our current customers as individuals, test our assumptions about how to better serve them, and then quickly automate what works without a major effort that takes us away from other initiatives.”

The new capabilities available today allow any brand, regardless of size, to conduct sophisticated marketing without a team of data scientists. “The massive benefits of personalized loyalty shouldn’t be confined to big brands like Domino’s and Starbucks that can afford large IT and data science teams,” says Goldstein. “Digital revenue is growing but digital teams are not, so these capabilities are especially timely given the massive labor shortages the industry is facing across the country,” he continues.

By eliminating the guesswork and making personalized marketing easy, brands can focus on what they do best: deeply understanding their customers and delivering them value.

 
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Finding ways to justify the cost of new technology can be a challenge in today’s current environment, but many hoteliers are relying on it throughout the pandemic to improve operations, interact with guests, train workers, and increase revenue. With 2022 in sight, the rest of the industry is taking stock of the most valuable technology innovations that were successfully put-to-use this year. One big hurdle remains: the hotel property-management system.

While many available technologies enhance operations and the guest experience, operators can be limited by the capabilities of their PMS and their available budgets for integrations. If hoteliers know where to look in the tech marketplace, how to maximize the value of the tools they have, and what level of operations they aspire to, it is possible to locate a technology partner who can help operators reach their goals and protect their investment for the long term.

Tomorrow’s Tools

Keeping up with new technology can be a costly, arduous endeavor. Hoteliers across the industry have fresh memories of chasing artificial trends throughout the last business cycle, resulting in wasteful tech spending. Operators today are so focused on maximizing their ability to recover along with the rest of the travel industry, and averse to experimenting with new technology, they run the risk of missing out on crucial technology capable of helping them turn their business around.

 

Fortunately, making an investment of this size is not always cut and dry. Hoteliers should investigate the capabilities that come with each PMS provider and choose a service that fits their needs. Some PMS providers offer programs that enable hotels to stay up to date with new versions at low or even no cost outside of their software subscription commitment. This allows hotels to focus on learning how to maximize their capabilities with existing tools and avoid repeatedly returning to the marketplace in search of a new PMS.

This way, operators can feel secure that their core PMS is looked after and look at their budget to focus on and examine ways technology can benefit their bottom lines related to the PMS. This can come in the form of revenue management tools and strategies, new upselling opportunities, and improving your property’s reviews by revamping your guest communications strategy. Investing in a PMS with these capabilities and strong third-party integration options could be your property’s gateway to renewed profitability in the new year.

Help Wanted

With the effects of COVID-19 still impacting the industry, the price tag attached to revolutionary technology has fluctuated heavily throughout the past year based on a property’s competitive positioning. However, price doesn’t tell the whole story, and investing in technology requires more than just a budgetary justification. Tech partners who are willing and able to provide consistent, ongoing support to hotel operators as they take up new technology can save operators' bottom line — and their sanity — as nothing hurts more in a recovering market than business interruptions from new technology.

PMS technology is notorious for its learning curve, and issues invariably arise due to the complexity of hotel operations; however, running a complex operation requires sophisticated tools, and with that comes the learning. It is important for operators to know that they can rely on their PMS partner to assist them when the time comes to request support and ongoing training to maximize their investment, and it would be a mistake not to factor the value of strong backing from these partners when choosing new technology.

This is even more important for independent hoteliers, who lack the protection of a flag when business hits a snag. Tech providers need to be available 24/7, and ideally provide multiple forms of contact, including live chat, email, e-learning tools, and live phone support. Having multiple ways to access support services is crucial for resolving time-sensitive challenges, particularly with the expectation of immediacy and hoteliers relying on fewer staff to get the job done.

The Next Step

Choosing a PMS is not a decision that should be taken lightly. Hoteliers are encouraged to do their due diligence and fully evaluate any technology partners, as well as internal assessments to understand their own operational needs. Look at operational needs, the elements that comprise the ideal guest experience, and what objectives are desired during each guests’ stay. When researching existing tools, operators may find that more is possible than they expect. You don’t know what you don’t know, so it always best to inquire with your current vendor to see what other possibilities are available with your installed solution, to possibly avoid considerable frustration, avoidable costs and unnecessary changes for staff and guests alike.

If it is determined that an investment is needed to provide these additional services, then it is worth it. Modern PMSs can resolve disconnections between departments through natural integrations, work in concert to improve efficiency, and save money. Automation can be used to reduce congestion in the hotel lobby by directing guests’ attention to self-serve digital processes and communications. This enables operators to provide guests with an interactive mobile experience without sacrificing the attention of valuable on-property associates. These are just a few of the ways modern technology can save on labor and operating costs while improving the overall guest experience.

Most technology professionals will say the concept of “future proofing” using existing technology is simply not possible. New capabilities sometimes require a new foundation to build on. However, by forging a strong relationship with your hotel’s tech partners, it is possible to stay one step ahead of the competition by understanding the property’s limitations and how to fill those gaps.

If future-proofing your hotel’s PMS investment is a priority, here are two documents that will help with the buying and budgeting process: The 2021 Smart Decision Guide to Hotel Property Management Systems and the PMS Evaluation Checklist.

 
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Edmonton, Alberta - November 8, 2021 – Hotel owner, operator and developer Hotel Equitiesrecently added the Stoneridge Mountain Resort, an all-suite property in Canmore, Alberta, to its management portfolio. Located west of Calgary, in Canmore, AB, the gateway to the Canadian Rockies, Stoneridge Mountain Resort is considered Canmore’s premier luxury property.  The area boasts amazing scenery, popular outdoor activities for all seasons and abundant wildlife and activities.

“With its stunning mountain views and easy accessibility from Calgary, Stoneridge Mountain Resort makes an excellent addition to our growing presence in Canada,” said Ryan McRae, senior vice president business development, Hotel Equities, Canada.  “Our guests can relax in luxury where five-star amenities and impeccable service make it easy to unwind and enjoy an unbeatable experience in the heart of the Canadian Rockies.”

Stoneridge Mountain Resort features one, two, and three-bedroom suites, a total of 110 available at the resort. Each suite features a stone fireplace, a full kitchenette, authentic mountain décor, gas barbecues on the deck or patio, and large windows framing spectacular mountain views. A heated garage under the hotel provides comfort and convenience especially during cold, snowy winters.

Close enough for a weekend getaway, nearby Calgary bustles with entertainment, business, and the region’s international airport.  The gates of the world renowned Banff National Park are less than a 10 minute drive from the property.

“We are excited to welcome this beautiful upscale resort to our portfolio,” said Martin Stitt, senior vice president operations, Hotel Equities, Canada.  “Its newly renovated suites, refined yet relaxing atmosphere, and proximity to the area’s attractions offer multiple options for our guests.  The hotel’s reputation for personalized service fits well with our team’s commitment to authentic hospitality.”

On site amenities abound including a full fitness center. Open all year, the heated outdoor pool invites swimmers and bathers while the hot tub encourages guests to relax in the soothing alpine air and enjoy amazing views.

At Stoneridge Mountain Resort, guests are surrounded by great food.  Canmore offers guests a variety of upscale dining options including charming bistros, award-winning restaurants, and great bars within walking distance to the town’s bustling downtown.  Boutique shops along the town’s quaint streets promise unexpected pleasure.

Stoneridge Mountain Resort is located at 30 Lincoln Park, Canmore, Alberta AB T1W 3E9.  For more information visit www.stoneridgeresort.ca.

 
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TORONTO, ON (November 4, 2021) Choice Hotels Canada recently announced the national winners of its celebrated annual APEX Awards: Awards for Property Excellence. Twelve awards recognized outstanding hotels and individuals who have demonstrated  stellar performance, ongoing commitment to guest service and operational excellence.

“It has been a very long 20 months for our franchisees, but despite that, our award-winning properties have continued not only to persevere, but to excel,” says Brian Leon, president, Choice Hotels Canada. “Operating a hotel has never been more challenging and these properties have over-delivered in every way when it comes to demonstrating hospitality excellence.”

The 2021 national APEX winners include:

  • Highest Guest Satisfaction (Top LTR): Quality Hotel & Conference Centre, Edmundston, NB

This award recognizes the property that achieved the highest Likelihood to Recommend (LTR) score in Choice Hotels’ guest survey results over the last year.

 

  • Marketing Star Award: Justin Barker, general manager, Comfort Inn, Windsor, ON

This award, new in 2021, recognizes a hotel that stands out from the crowd when it comes to local marketing. The winner will have shown an eagerness to engage with Choice Hotels Canada’s marketing team and leverage the digital resources available to increase the effectiveness of its local marketing efforts.

 

  • Choice Privileges Ambassador of the Year: Dharmesh Patel, general manager, Quality Inn, Leamington, ON

This award, new in 2021, recognizes a Choice Privileges Ambassador who helps to foster a strong Choice Privileges culture at the hotel, and consistently motivates the on-property team and fellow Ambassador community.

 

  • Sales Excellence Award: Natalie Cherry, general manger, Sleep Inn, Regina East, SK

This national award recognizes an individual who demonstrated outstanding sales efforts. The winner will have been quick to respond to local opportunities or those from Choice to capture incremental room nights, leverage tools and resources as well as engage with Choice’s sales team.

 

  • Renovation of the Year Award: Comfort Inn Airport, Winnipeg, MB

This award recognizes achievements in outstanding on-brand renovations that drove guest satisfaction increases.

 

  • Leader of the Year Award: Nimfa Bautista, general manager, Comfort Hotel Bayer's Lake, Halifax, NS

This peer-based award recognizes an individual, whose achievements include outstanding operational practices or team building.

  • Developer of the Year Award: VIMA Hospitality Group, which operates two Choice hotels in Montreal, QC the Quality Inn Downtown and the Econo Lodge.
  • Best New Entry – New Build Mid-Market Brands: Quality Hotel & Conference Centre, Edmundston, NB

 

  • Best New Entry – Conversion Mid-Market Brands: Quality Inn, Quebec City, QC

 

  • Best New Entry – Economy Brands: Econo Lodge Inn & Suites, Kelowna, BC

 

  • Best New Entry – Ascend Hotel Collection (conversion): The Fort Garry Hotel, Spa & Conference Centre in Winnipeg, MB

 

  • Best New Entry – Ascend Hotel Collection (new build): The Hue Hotel, Kamloops, BC

For additional information or to make your reservation at any of these award-winning hotels, visit www.ChoiceHotels.com.

 

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