Monthly Archives: November 2011

Airlines Cut Back, Hotels Step In

Your Own Concierge

A few years ago, the Peninsula Beverly Hills hired Jimmy Bardolf as the hotel’s director of transportation and resident “airport concierge.” Mr. Bardolf, along with his staff of five, meets guests at Los Angeles International Airport, gets them access to airline lounges and helps solve all manner of problems, including securing better seats on planes if available. At the airport Mr. Bardolf can be seen carrying around a 30-pound briefcase filled with everything from baby wipes to Krazy Glue for broken nails.

“Instead of guests having a poor experience here and making up for it when they get to the hotel,” Mr. Bardolf said from one of several cellphones he carries while at the airport to connect with hotel staff members and guests, “we try to be a concierge at the airport and make their lives a bit easier whether they’re coming off an hour flight or a 14-hour flight.”

While there is no charge for arriving guests, departing guests pay $100 per family for speeding up the security process and getting access to airport lounges. That’s at least $100 less than American Airlines charges per couple for a similar V.I.P. option called Five Star Service.

Other hotels are teaming up with airports to offer similar services. Several Jamaican resorts, including Round Hill Hotel Villas and Island Outpost Hotel Villas, have a relationship with Club Mobay, a V.I.P. service at Montego Bay airport that speeds departing guests through security and immigration and into a 10,000-square-foot lounge with Wi-Fi, showers, bar, mini-spa and a kids’ corner, for $30 a person — about $5 less than you pay at the airport as of Dec. 15.

And guests of the new Four Seasons Marrakech who use the hotel’s pickup service for 600 dirhams ($74) are whisked to a V.I.P. lounge to have their passports checked instead of waiting in line at customs.

Luggage Solutions

Overburdened with luggage? Leave your bags at home. Last year, Westin Hotels Resorts began lending guests New Balance sneakers and workout apparel to help reduce bulk in carry-on bags. Shoes come with new socks; sports shirts, pants and bras are washed between workouts, and shoe soles replaced.

Fairmont Hotels Resorts offers a free similar program with Adidas gear for elite members of its loyalty program or $10 per stay for other members. Other hotels like the Four Seasons Chicago and the Ritz-Carlton Chicago (also a Four Seasons hotel) eliminate the need for luggage completely by storing clothes for repeat clientele, at no charge beyond laundering. Guests arrive to a closet full of clothes that have been laundered and pressed.

For a $315 fee, the Trump SoHo in New York goes a step further, curating guests’ garments with the help of the luxury valet company Garde Robe, which stores and catalogs clothes by size, color and season, and will pull together outfits for specific occasions.

Hotels are also helping travelers dodge overweight luggage fees. Last year, the Hampton Inn Suites Wesley Chapel, just north of Tampa, Fla., installed a luggage weight scale in the lobby after overhearing one too many guests vent about getting hit with overweight or excess luggage charges.

“We ordered a luggage scale right then,” said Janet Arnold, general manager of the hotel, which also keeps a variety of postal boxes for guests to ship items home if it will help them keep costs down. “It gets used about five times a week on average.”

Food for the Plane

From the Four Seasons Seattle to the Jefferson in Washington, D.C., many hotels now offer meals to go. Roughly 60 percent of departing guests at One Only Palmilla in Los Cabos, Mexico, order from the Air to Go menu, which includes sandwiches like slow-roasted pork on pita bread or grilled chicken breast with fruit and a cookie, for 280 pesos (about $20). The Four Seasons Seattle introduced a Flight Bites menu last year, with meals like pasta salad with grilled eggplant and tomatoes, cured meats, pickles and cookies served in compostable containers, for $30.

The Montage Deer Valley in Park City, Utah, has $18 boxes packed with local fare like sandwiches made from Creminelli salami and Gold Creek aged Cheddar, homemade granola bars and honey pops made by the resort’s resident beekeeper. And Hilton’s Hampton Inn chain offers free On the Run Breakfast Bags packed with water, fruit, a muffin and a cereal bar each morning.

A Place to Relax

A growing number of international hotels are adding their own airport lounges for guests who want to freshen up after a long flight or relax before takeoff. Last year, the Four Seasons Resort Hualalai opened an airport lounge at Kona International Airport with a wet bar, Wi-Fi, charging stations for electronics and refreshments. In February, three of Hilton’s Maldives Resorts — the Hilton Maldives Iru Fushi Resort Spa, Waldorf Astoria Maldives and Conrad Maldives Rangali Island — opened lounges (one for Hilton guests and one for Conrad and Waldorf guests) at the seaplane terminal of Male International Airport offering showers, Wi-Fi, a children’s play room, shoulder massages and a resident chef who serves up smoked salmon pizza, Thai fish cakes and other dishes. The lounges, which stay open until 11 p.m., are free to guests upon arrival. Departing guests pay $80 per adult and $40 per child.

Hotels at airports are also stepping up. For example, Sheraton Hotels Resorts offers half-day rates at its airport properties for travelers with long layovers or delays who want to spend the time in the privacy of a hotel room.

VIZERGY’s Exceptional Hotel Website Design and Marketing Performance Lead to Six HSMAI Adrian Awards

Clients’ Impressive ROI and Traffic and Unique Designs Pave Way for Awards

For the sixth consecutive year, VIZERGY®, an award-winning hotel Internet marketing leader, was honored with multiple Hospitality Sales and Marketing Association International (HSMAI) Adrian Awards for best in hospitality sales and marketing.  VIZERGY had six winning entries, including two gold winners, in the “Digital Marketing” division and “Web Site” category, for branded and independent properties and a hotel and resort group.

The awards are based on ROI figures, website design elements and marketing statistics such as search engine results and traffic.  As a result of VIZERGY’s strong integrated marketing strategies—which encompass design, search marketing, social marketing, mobile marketing, email marketing and more—clients witnessed significant ROIs (up to 80:1) and number of website visitors (up to over one million per year) in 2011, and all saw sharp year-over-year increases.

On the heels of winning multiple W3 Awards, VIZERGY President and CEO Joe Hyman graciously recognized his company’s Adrian Awards achievement, “We are honored to receive another round of Adrian Awards.  This shows our team’s diligence and ability to understand the goals and target travel shoppers of our clients.  We’re able to consistently exceed our clients’ expectations with exceptional website designs and marketing strategies that give them an edge over their competition.”

VIZERGY’s 2011 gold Adrian Award winners are Lake Buena Vista Resort Village and Spa and Ocean Sky Hotel and ResortHilton Garden Inn Denver Downtown, Hotel Breakwater South Beach, Ramada Mall of America and Sky Hotels and Resorts were bronze winners.

Judged by expert hospitality, travel, tourism and media professionals, and now in their 55th year, HSMAI’s Adrian Awards are the most notable and respected awards in the hospitality industry. With over 1,000 nominations, the Adrian Awards are also the largest and most prestigious travel marketing competition globally. Winners will be officially recognized at the Awards Gala, a black-tie affair attended by more than 1,000 hospitality executives, on February 27, 2012, at the New York Marriott Marquis in New York City.


VIZERGY is an award-winning website development and Internet marketing company specializing in providing innovative digital solutions for the hospitality industry.  VIZERGY offers complete web presence management, including website design, mobile design, search engine optimization, pay-per-click advertising, email marketing, reservation services and social media strategies that help hoteliers turn their website into their most-effective distribution channel.  Helping drive online revenue since 1998, the company has propelled thousands of branded and independent hotels, resorts and property management groups to success.

For more information on VIZERGY and its services, please visit, call William Bellis at 904.389.1130 Ext. 171 or email  Join us on Facebook and Twitter.

Logos, product and company names mentioned are the property of their respective owners.

NY hotels initially avoided paying $8.9 million in taxes

The New York Daily News reports that the Bloomberg administration initially failed to collect $8.9 in taxes from 92 hotels and hostels over the last decade.

Among the 92 hotels was the chic Bowery Grand Hotel, which had about $493,000 in taxes that were not initially paid, the Daily News says. No other hotels were cited in the report.

TWITTER:  Follow Hotel Check-In’s Barb DeLollis

NY HOTEL NEWS:  Tour Grand Hyatt’s sleek, new club lounge

The cash-strapped city has since collected most of the money, but city Controller John Liu highlighted the situation in a new audit as New York’s experiences an unusual hotel building boom.

Mayor Michael Bloomberg recently held a press conference to tout the opening of a record numer of hotel rooms throughout the city. The building boom includes Long Island City, where there are now 17 hotels including a Holiday Inn. Next month, the Wyndham Garden Long Island City will open there.

Regarding taxes, Liu in a statement says that tourism and business travel so critical to New York City’s economy and so “the Department of Finance is selling us short if this badly needed revenue is not collected.” The $8.9 million figure doesn’t include fines or interest, the Daily News says.

At this point, virtually all of the hotel tax revenue owed has been collected and the Finance Department promises to collect the rest, the article says.

NY HOTEL NEWS:  Developer wants to supersize hotel across from Ace

“Businesses that do not pay their obligations put the screws to everyone,” Finance Department spokesman Owen Stone told the paper.

SOCIAL MEDIA:  Are hotel emails or Facebook, Twitter notes more effective?

The audit revealed the problem: Hotels are allowed to voluntarily register with the city when they open their doors, but 64 hotels and 20 hostels and bed-and-breakfasts never did, the Daily News says. Another eight were caught underreporting.

Readers: Comments?

Renaissance hotel sale is expected next year – St. Louis Post

The bond trustee who controls the Renaissance Grand
in downtown St. Louis expects the property to be
sold next year, according to a notice published last week.

Brian Krippner, a senior vice president of bond
trustee UMB Bank, says in the notice that there’s
a lot of interest in the property:

A number of potential buyers have been contacted and have signed
confidentiality agreements in order to be provided with detailed
information concerning the Hotel. Jones Lang is continuing to
contact additional, potential buyers. It is anticipated that a
competitive bidding process will occur and that the Hotel will be
sold to the highest or best bidder. It is also anticipated that a
closing of such sale will occur at some time in 2012.

Piquing buyers’ interest may be the fact that the hotel’s cash
flow has just been improved by more than $2 million a year. The
city of St. Louis refinanced a loan with the federal
Department of Housing and Urban Development and
agreed to pass the savings on to the Renaissance. That will save
the hotel $23.8 million between 2012 and 2022, Krippner says.

The bondholders are owed $98 million, plus interest, but
Krippner says it’s too soon to say how much they’ll get from the
sale. The hotel’s longest-term bonds, maturing in 2035, recently
sold for about 25 cents on the dollar.

The hotel has struggled financially since it opened in 2002,
and bondholders took control in 2009 after its owners missed an
interest payment. 


Article source:

Hotels to Experience Moderate Growth in 2012 Across All Travel Segments

/PRNewswire/ — According to TravelClick’s November 2011 North American Hospitality Review, all travel segments — business travel, leisure travel and group business — are experiencing moderate gains in demand and room rate for the next 12 months.  The North American Hospitality Review is based on actual hotel bookings from Q4 2011 through Q3 2012.

For this period, committed occupancy is up 3.3 percent year-over-year, average daily rate (ADR) is up 4 percent and revenue per available room (RevPAR), a top-line indicator, is tracking ahead by 5.9 percent.  The business travel segment, which represents 47 percent of all transient rooms reserved for the next 12 months, will see a 6.7 percent RevPAR gain.

Markets showing the most year-over-year occupancy growth include:


Markets that show negative occupancy growth include:


“Throughout 2011, business travel has been the primary driver for hotel demand and that trend continues in 2012,” said Tim Hart, executive vice president, business intelligence, TravelClick.  “While business travel remains strong, overall demand has slowed and the industry is not experiencing the robust ADR growth that many had hoped for.  As we gear up for a new year, sustained growth may not be a guarantee.”

Fourth Quarter 2011 (October 2011 – December 2011)

Committed occupancy continues to increase in the fourth quarter of 2011, up 2.3 percent from Q4 2010, with ADR and RevPAR up 4.0 percent and 5.7 percent respectively.  RevPAR posted a moderate 3.3 percent gain year-over-year in October 2011, however, it is expected to increase 9.3 percent in November and 8.2 percent in December 2011.

Markets that show above average year-over-year occupancy growth throughout the rest of the fourth quarter are Detroit (22.1 percent), Tampa (13.1 percent) and Seattle (12.7 percent).  Markets showing below average growth are Atlanta (-9.2 percent), Denver (-7.5 percent) and Honolulu (-5.5 percent).

First Quarter (January 2012 – March 2012)

According to the report, RevPAR in Q1 2012 is expected to increase 7.6 percent from the prior year — up 13.4 percent in January, down 2.1 percent in February and 9.5 percent higher in March.  This is the highest quarterly RevPAR gain in a year.  Demand throughout all customer segments continues to show moderate improvement, with group demand up 1.3 percent, leisure up 4.6 percent and business up 1.8 percent. 

Markets showing strong year-over-year occupancy growth in the first quarter of 2012 are Indianapolis (33.7 percent), Detroit (20.4 percent) and Chicago (21.9 percent).  Markets showing negative occupancy growth are Dallas (-24.0 percent), Tampa (-13.1 percent) and Washington DC (-8.9 percent). 

About TravelClick, Inc.

TravelClick ( is the leading provider of revenue generating solutions for hoteliers across the globe. TravelClick offers hotels world-class reservation solutions, business intelligence products and comprehensive media and marketing solutions to help hotels grow their business. With local experts around the globe, we help more than 30,000 hotel clients in over 140 countries drive profitable room reservations through better revenue management decisions, proven reservation technology and innovative marketing. Since 1999, TravelClick has helped hotels leverage the web to effectively navigate the complex global distribution landscape. TravelClick has offices in New York, Atlanta, Chicago, Barcelona, London, Dubai, Hong Kong, Houston, Melbourne, Orlando, Shanghai, Singapore and Tokyo. Follow us on and

About the TravelClick North American Hospitality Review

The TravelClick North American Hospitality Review is based on reservation and committed group sales data by hotel companies participating in TravelClick’s MarketVision Demand Position Product.  These include Gaylord, Hilton, Hyatt, InterContinental, Loews, Marriott, Omni and Starwood. The data is collected in 25 major North American Markets, representing 202 million annual room nights and $27 billion in annual room revenue. TravelClick is the only business intelligence provider that provides comprehensive forward-looking data, based on real bookings, to hoteliers around the globe.


Danielle DeVorenKCSA Strategic


SOURCE TravelClick, Inc.

Navigating the hotel distribution landscape

It wasn’t too long ago that the hotelier’s marketing toolkit contained not much more than a few strategically placed billboards, travel agents armed with brochures, a good director of sales and an efficient call center.

Today, hoteliers have more tools than ever for getting their property into the consideration sets of the brand-agnostic, DIY leisure travel shopper. Distribution now goes hand-in-hand with marketing and includes terms like “social media” and “search engine optimization” that didn’t even exist 20 years ago. And 20 years from now, these cutting edge channels themselves might be as quaint as your neighborhood travel agent.

Distribution channels have become more complex and multi-dimensional as brands have developed powerful websites and online travel agencies have evolved from being strictly booking engines to also being media sites reaching tens of millions of consumers each month. But all channels are not created equal, and neither is every hotel or every hotel brand. Each channel has different costs and delivers a different customer in a different timeframe. Wedding business books a year in advance; vacationers like packages and plan 90 days ahead; and a couple on a mobile device might be literally right around the corner looking for a room tonight.

How can hoteliers keep up with the pace of change, and what do the innovations of today mean for the future of distribution? What follows is a discussion of key topics in hotel distribution today, the strategic considerations they raise, and their potential to change the future of distribution.

The role of search
Whether a quick weekend getaway or a two-week vacation of a lifetime, the journeys of most U.S. consumers start online. According to PhoCusWright’s Consumer Travel Report Third Edition, more than 50% of consumers use the Internet to initiate their search for the perfect vacation. Of those consumers, 38% begin their search on an OTA. 

As a primary gateway for travelers into the trip lifecycle, hotels need to be serious about search. Is their own website search-engine optimized? What is an appropriate search marketing budget? Is their participation with OTAs sufficient exposure? And as Google moves deeper into the travel space, what will happen to search marketing costs for hotels over time? This is especially important for smaller brands and independent properties whose marketing budgets might price them out of top placement in paid search products.

The role of mobile
Consider this:
•  60% of the world’s population owns a smartphone or other mobile device, according to PhoCusWright.
• 116 million Americans were using mobile devices to access content and surf the mobile Web as of August 2011, a 19% increase over the previous year, according to comScore.

And if those numbers don’t make you sit up and take notice, consider that in 2010 more than one-third of respondents to a PhoCusWright survey said they expected to use their smartphones to book travel sometime this year.

This increased mobility demonstrates the need for hotels to be accessible across all platforms and to have a distribution strategy that includes mobile-only consumers. Mobile stands to revolutionize travel distribution in the same way the Internet did more than 15 years ago.

The data also beg a few questions:
• What is the most effective, affordable way to reach mobile customers?
• What are the habits of mobile bookers that hotels need to understand?
• How can independents play in mobile without an entire staff and an app development team?  

RevenueMgt Ad Will Appear Here

Jay Hubbs

Social media
Social media is all the rage, and it seems as though there’s a hot new social channel emerging every day. But are social media outlets a distribution channel unto themselves, or are they merely a marketing channel? 

Clearly, social media plays a role in distribution in that it is an increasingly important influencer. Data show that hotels with higher TripAdvisor scores and better traveler reviews on OTA sites have higher conversion rates. And, while word-of-mouth advertising is nothing new, it’s never been easier to share an opinion, good or bad, with a global audience of friends and fellow travelers online. Whether in formal review submissions to OTAs and traveler reviews sites or in casual updates on Facebook and Twitter from their destination, travelers have made travel a social experience.

Whether you consider yourself a fan or a skeptic, a smart hotelier must consider:
• How are other hotels taking advantage of social channels?
• Does a large fan base really translate into bookings?
• How can I monitor, manage and influence traveler reviews?
• Once I jump into the game, how do I keep the customer engagement and momentum going?
• How do I effectively track and measure the return on investment of my social media efforts? 

Harnessing global demand
Burgeoning demand from emerging growth markets makes international distribution a potential game changer for hotel owners and operators. International travelers book further in advance and stay longer than domestic guests, but marketing in another language can be a daunting and expensive endeavor. Furthermore, serving guests with different customs, habits and preferences can be challenging.

Still, international travelers, arriving at a rate of more than 64 million per year, are spending US$152 billion in the United States, according to the U.S. Office of Travel and Tourism Industries. And with millions of Asian travelers planning a trip to the U.S. and millions of Brazilians on their heels, hoteliers need to ensure they have a clearly defined strategy to take advantage of this opportunity while delivering a great experience for these new U.S. travelers.

With the emergence of new channels and rampant innovation across the travel industry, hotel marketing and distribution is becoming increasingly complex. But with a strategic view and awareness of the biggest areas of opportunity and impact, hoteliers can navigate smartly and position themselves for ongoing success. Faced with the fast pace of technological innovation and the increasing complexity of the distribution landscape, hotels should remember that success is a journey. The best things to do are to get familiar with new technologies, network with industry partners and colleagues, and test and learn.

Want to Learn More?
The future of distribution will be addressed on 29 November as part of the 10-part 2011 Revenue Management Webinar Series produced by the HSMAI University in partnership with HotelNewsNow and STR (the parent company of, and sponsored by IDeaS. Each month, a webinar covers one aspect of cutting edge revenue management in today’s economy.  If you’re not able to attend a live program, archives are available.

About the Authors
Jay Hubbs oversees hotel supplier relationships for, an Expedia Inc. company, as part of the Expedia Partner Services Group.  A graduate of both the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell and the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, Jay has extensive experience at the property, regional and corporate level of hotel and revenue management.  Prior to Hotwire, Jay worked on the distribution and revenue management teams for Starwood Hotels in New York and before that as a consultant for companies in the travel and other industries.

Amy Cain Severson serves as the Director of Strategic Accounts and Industry Relations for Expedia, Inc., where she leads the industry relations program for the Partner Services Group.  In this role, Severson is responsible for managing relationships with key industry associations and fostering affinity for Expedia, Inc.  Based at corporate headquarters in Bellevue, WA, Severson is also responsible for enhancing relationships and driving revenue opportunities with the industry’s leading ownership and management companies.  Previously, Severson acted as an original member of the Destination Services group, focusing on enhancing travel experiences with activities, tours and attractions.  Prior to joining Expedia in 2002, she was an Account Executive at Sabre Inc.  Severson graduated with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Finance from Texas Christian University.

The opinions expressed in this column do not necessarily reflect the opinions of or its parent company, Smith Travel Research and its affiliated companies. Columnists published on this site are given the freedom to express views that may be controversial, but our goal is to provoke thought and constructive discussion within our reader community. Please feel free to comment or contact an editor with any questions or concerns.

About the HSMAI Revenue Management Advisory Board
The Revenue Management Advisory Board leverages insights, emerging trends, and industry innovations to guide the development of products and programs that optimize revenue for hotels.

Members include:
• Chris K. Anderson, Ph.D., Professor, Cornell University
• Christopher Crenshaw, CRME, Vice President, Marketing Intelligence, Loews Hotels
• Kathleen Cullen, CRME, Corporate Director of Revenue Strategies, Heritage Hotels and Resorts
• Sloan Dean, CRME, Vice President of Sales Marketing, Interstate Hotels Resorts
• Jon Eliot, CRME, CHA
• Tammy Farley, Principal, The Rainmaker Group
• Fred Heintz, CRME, Director of Group Strategy, Marriott Renaissance Hotels of New York City
• Jay Hubbs, Director Hotel Supplier Relations, Expedia Partner Services Group / Hotwire
• Burl Hutchison, CRME, Manager of Revenue Optimization, Sabre Hospitality Solutions
• Warren T. Jahn, Jr., Ph.D., Manager, Revenue Systems Training AMER, IHG
• Klaus Kohlmayr, Senior Director, Consulting, IDeaS Revenue Optimization
• Orly Ripmaster, CRME, Senior Analyst, STR Analytics
• Scott Roby, CRME, Vice President, Revenue Management, Evolution Hospitality
• Chinmai Sharma, Vice President, Revenue Management, Wyndham Hotel Group
• Susan Spencer, Market Director – N. America, ChannelRUSH
• Trevor Stuart-Hill, CRME, President, Revenue Matters
• Paul Wood, CRME, CHBA, Vice President of Revenue Management, Greenwood Hospitality Group 


Loyalty Traveler – Hyatt Hotels AVIA Long Beach

AVIA Long Beach captivated me right away. The place felt refreshingly modern after hanging out at expensive luxury Orange County beach resorts. AVIA Long Beach along with three other AVIA properties in Savannah, Georgia; Napa, California and The Woodlands, Texas signed on with Hyatt Hotels September 1, 2011. This past week I stayed at AVIA Long Beach and absolutely loved the hotel value I received. I stayed at convention size Hyatt Regency Long Beach last year and the boutique AVIA Long Beach hotel is the upper upscale preferred property choice in my opinion.

Don’t wake me up.

The junior suite we stayed in had a swivel TV for facing either the sitting room or the bedroom. The curious feature of the TV cabinet is the backside had mirror image writing.

Don’t wake me up.

Don’t wake me up if I’m dreaming

California dreams

Just let me lay here in the sun

Until my dream is done

Palm trees, ocean breeze

Let’s go cruising ……..


I added the “e” to breeze. Not really sure if that is artistic freedom or a screw up.

AVIA Long Beach

Long Beach had clear skies in the day and colored lights at night.

Long Beach pedestrian bridge, city lights and port

The Queen Mary can be seen in the background of the photo. There is fixed-platform viewing binoculars for gazing around the hotel vicinity on the 8th floor rooftop pool deck.

AVIA Long Beach binoculars on 8th floor pool deck

The lobby has several relaxing elements…

AVIA Long Beach reception desk

from the blue colored bar…

AVIA Long Beach lobby bar


to the bare lobby tree.

Bare tree lobby

We stayed in the 532 square feet Master Suite which is basically a studio suite or junior suite since there was no door between the bedroom and sitting room. The room was comfortable. My only complaint is the electronic mini-bar and ice machines only on odd number floors (and I was on the sixth floor).

AVIA Long Beach room 616

A glass divider separates the room entrance from the desk workspace. I was surprised to see I never took a good photo of the glass. I kept thinking I was going to walk into it as I moved from the desk to the front door. Pretty design etched in glass.

Glass panel separates front door from desk area.

The sitting room had a couch, chair, coffee table and lighting.

Sitting room of Master Suite at AVIA Long Beach

The desk area had mini-bar, coffee maker, ice bucket and glasses.


Avia Long Beach bed


The bathroom was the standout feature of the room.

Walk-in shower of AVIA Long Beach suite

There is an immense parking garage across the street from the hotel where self-parking through the hotel was $7 per night.

AVIA Long Beach uses parking garage across the street.

Unfortunately that was our primary room view, but the real views are from the rooftop of the hotel.

AVIA Long Beach rooftop pool

AAA Breakfast rate

This hotel was $98.10 on a AAA rate with breakfast. As a Diamond member who already receives complimnetary breakfast I could have booked the AARP or Costco rate and received an additional $25 hotel credit.

AVIA Kitchen

Hyatt is sometimes unbeatable. $98 for the room and I received a Coppola 2009  Chardonnay 375ml with cheese plate and a $40 breakfast at the AVIA Kitchen restaurant where we both ate crab omelettes. I needed a fix of crab since Dungeness crab season started two weeks ago in California, but the fishing is just starting today after a 12-day strike as wholesalers and crabbers split the difference between $2.00 and $2.50 per pound.
News is $2.25 per pound and crab in the stores tomorrow.


There is a fitness room and outdoor deck off the lobby area. A couple of computer terminals were also available here.

AVIA Long Beach lobby deck

AVIA Long Beach fitness room

AVIA Long Beach computer center

AVIA Long Beach lobby chairs

AVIA Long Beach bar seating

The area surrounding the hotel is the revitalized waterfront with loads of residential buildings, entertainment and dining, and tourist areas across Shoreline Drive along the waterfront. There really is a Long Beach here near the hotel, however, Kelley and I spent time walking the beach last year and oil tar is present in the sand. She was scrubbing her feet in the hotel room last year. Oil rigs are just offshore here, but cleverly disguised with concealing artwork and palm tree island structures.

The beach at Long Beach

Long Beach is a major city of nearly 500,000 people and there are plenty of activities available in the tourist area like the Queen Mary, the Aquarium of the Pacific, boat cruises to Catalina Island, museums and water sports.

Queen Mary historic passenger ship retired in Long Beach, California.

AVIA Long Beach provides a good base for a stay in Long Beach.

Hyatt’s AVIA Long Beach is a Gold Passport category 3 hotel at 12,000 points per night. The rates currently tend to be lower than Hyatt Regency Long Beach. One advantage of Hyatt Regency Long Beach is a Club Lounge.

Take advantage of AVIA Long Beach while the rates are low. I have a feeling they will be inching up once more Hyatt guests realize the value here.


Loyalty Traveler, a
BoardingArea Blog

Hotel blast kills 3, wounds twenty-seven in philippines

“When we spin a round over 4 times as well as you’re obliged for it, it stings a lot, ” pronounced Palko, who tossed 3 picks in his initial NFL begin last week during New England.

Pressed in to avocation in place of Matt Cassel, who is out for a year after spiteful his throwing palm, Palko might have tossed divided his possibility to be a starter a rest of a deteriorate — tossed it right to a guys wearing white jerseys upon a wintry, stormy night during Arrowhead Stadium.

The Chiefs marched opposite midfield to a Pittsburgh 37 in a shutting mins when Palko forsaken during a behind of to pass. He was seeking for Dwayne Bowe nonetheless threw it tall as well as during a behind of him, as well as Keenan Lewis hauled in a interception with twenty-nine seconds left to sign a outcome.

“I usually review a quarterback. we knew we had assistance underneath, so we could stay during a behind of as well as strengthen low, ” Lewis said. “When a round came out of a quarterback’s palm, we saw which Bowe had already done his move. That’s when we knew we could have a play.”

The Chiefs claimed former Broncos quarterback Kyle Orton off waivers Wednesday with a idea of carrying him contest with Palko for a starting job. Orton didn’t arrive in locale until Friday, nonetheless, as well as he was dead Sunday night after participating in usually a single practice.

“He’ll have a most improved possibility this week to contest, ” Chiefs manager Todd Haley pronounced, “and similar to we pronounced, Tyler is a starter, nonetheless whatever upon all sides we contend, if someone gives us a improved possibility to win, that’s a guideline we in all follow.”

Ben Roethlisberger was twenty-one of 31 for 193 yards with a touchdown as well as an interception for a Steelers( 8-3), whose invulnerability mislaid All-Pro reserve Troy Polamalu to a conduct damage in a initial entertain nonetheless still kept a left-handed Chiefs( 4-7) from scoring a touchdown.

Kansas City hasn’t reached a finish section given a third entertain opposite Denver upon Nov. 13.

Kansas City led 3-0 in a second entertain when Palko’s initial interception, which Taylor returned to a Chiefs 8, resulted in a 21-yard margin idea by a Steelers’ Shaun Suisham.

The second collect was returned by Mundy, who had taken over during reserve for Polamalu, to a Kansas City 24. A invulnerability appeared to reason Pittsburgh when Tamba Hali sacked Roethlisberger upon third-and-7, nonetheless reserve Jon McGraw was called for defensive land to give a Steelers a initial down.

Three plays after, Roethlisberger found Saunders in a during a behind of of a finish zone.

“When we spin a round over 4 times, we in all don’t have a possibility to win, ” Haley said.

Ryan Succop combined a 49-yard margin idea after in a second entertain for Kansas City, his second of a diversion, nonetheless Suisham answered with his own 49-yarder upon a last fool around of a initial half.

Succop done a 40-yard margin idea with 6:11 left in a fourth quarter.

“We’re relocating a round as well as when we get in a red section we’ve got to measure touchdowns as well as not usually margin goals, ” far-reaching receiver Steve Breaston pronounced, “especially opposite a group similar to this.”

Polamalu left a diversion in a initial entertain when he tackled 290-pound Chiefs descent plunge into Steve Maneri, who had held a pass in a prosaic after backing up in a backfield.

The reigning Defensive Player of a Year’s conduct strike Maneri’s knee as well as he crumpled to a territory, where he lay whilst trainers came out to check upon him. Polamalu was a bit rootless when he stood up as well as a group pronounced he was controversial to lapse with a “blow to a head.”

Steelers core Maurkice Pouncey additionally left in a initial half with an illness.

Roethlisberger showed small justification of a damaged ride which caused him to be rather singular in use, attack 10 opposite receivers. He got a little assistance from Rashard Mendenhall, who ran for 57 yards, as well as a invulnerability which kept giving a Pittsburgh offense budding margin position.

“It was a hard-fought diversion, ” Steelers manager Mike Tomlin said. “We’re vehement about winning — as well as winning upon a highway — as well as creation a required plays, quite defensively down a stretch.”

The Steelers consumed a earnest event in a initial entertain, pushing inside a Chiefs 10-yard line. Nonetheless backup using during a behind of Mewelde Moore had a round poked out by Hali as well as it was recovered by Javier Arenas in a finish section for a touchback.

Kansas City gave a round right during a behind of when Palko fumbled a snap moments later.

Pittsburgh additionally had a decent expostulate finish mid by a scoreless third when Roethlisberger underthrew Antonio Brown down a sideline. Kansas City reserve Travis Daniels swooped in to have a interception, nonetheless a Chiefs’ left-handed offense couldn’t capitalize.

That wound up being a story of a game.

“No time to lay here as well as feel contemptible for ourselves, ” Palko said. “All a interceptions have been upon me, a fumbled snap was upon me as well. Any time we have a round in your palm, you’re obliged for it, as well as we take full shortcoming for all 4 turnovers.”

Notes: Kansas local Martina McBride sang a inhabitant anthem. Modern Family’s Eric Stonestreet, who attended Kansas State, threw a rite initial pass. … Polamalu was experiencing “concussion-like symptoms” as well as will go on to be evaluated, Tomlin said. … A Chiefs accomplished with 252 yards of sum offense. … Thomas Jones had thirteen carries for 37 yards for Kansas City.

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Accor Hotels A|Club instant Platinum elite is awash in travel deals this morning.

Accor Hotels A|Club instant Platinum elite

Gary Leff reveals a link for
instant Accor Hotels A|Club Platinum status. That elite status has limited usefulness for the USA since there are only a handful of Sofitels in a few major cities, but A|Club elite can be quite nice for international travel. I tried the offer and my account now reads platinum. Although, I guess I should have verified what status I already had with A|Club since I might have received an instant Platinum upgrade from a different offer earlier this year.

Here is an article I wrote in September 2011 giving some
basics of A|Club hotel loyalty program.

Cyber Monday Travel Deals

I was thinking of writing a post for Omni Hotels Cyber-Monday deal, since that looked to be the best hotel rate discount offer I have seen this past weekend, but Deals We Like already has a popular post (according to USA Today statistics) listing several hotel discount offers available today. Readers interested in shopping for hotels today should check out “
Cyber Monday Travel Deals” on Deals We Like.

Gaylord Resorts $109 rates in December

Gaylord Resorts has a $109 hotel rate deal not mentioned on Deals We Like. Gaylord Resorts have four large convention properties in Gaylord Palms Orlando, Gaylord Texan near Dallas, Gaylord Opryland Nashville and Gaylord National at National Harbor, Maryland (near DC).

I have stayed at two of these hotels and what I like about the properties is they are self-sufficient hotels with a Disneyland-like environment of attractive atrium interiors and waterfalls and play areas and pools. There are several restaurant choices and multiple bars. I have always thought these hotels make a great family destination since there is so much to do without leaving the hotel property. The food is a bit expensive though.

The availability of $109 rates are easy to find over multiple dates at the different properties.

There is also a
DreamWorks Experience Family Package if you want to splurge.

Gaylord Resorts Cyber Monday Sale

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