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News Briefs

  • 6/30/2024

    SpotOn is the Newest Addition to the US Foods CHECK Business Tools Program, Bringing Restaurants Technology with a Personal Touch

    spoton logo
    SpotOn,a software and payments partner for restaurants, announced that it has been added to the U.S. Foods CHECK Business Tools program. This program provides foodservice operators with a growing suite of technology solutions designed to drive traffic, simplify staffing, and modernize operations. The collaboration between U.S. Foods and SpotOn will empower US Foods customers with the point-of-sale, labor management, and other technology they need to succeed on their own terms. 
     
    With a shared commitment to best-in-class support and a personal touch, SpotOn will bring its fully integrated restaurant operating system to US Food’s customers nationwide. Known for flexible, cloud-based technology complemented by personalized support, SpotOn offers solutions that enable restaurants to process payments, streamline operations, and create exceptional employee and guest experiences. 
     
    “This collaboration with US Foods is a significant step for SpotOn in reaching hundreds of thousands of restaurant operators nationwide,” said Mark Brodahl, Chief Revenue Officer of SpotOn. “US Foods’s commitment to the restaurant industry aligns with SpotOn’s mission to help restaurant operators everywhere thrive with great technology and best-in-class service and support with a human touch. Together, we will help restaurants run smarter, more efficient, and more profitable operations with the right tech and the right partners.” 
     
    SpotOn's restaurant operating system combines point-of-sale (POS) systems, commission-free and fee-free online ordering and reservations, labor management software, and more. SpotOn technology helps restaurants streamline daily operations, reduce overhead costs, and enable their team to focus on what matters most–providing exceptional guest experiences. In addition to its technology suite, SpotOn offers a range of customer engagement and automated marketing tools to help restaurants increase customer loyalty and drive repeat business. From digital loyalty programs and targeted email campaigns to online ordering and gift cards, SpotOn provides the tools and expertise to help restaurants adapt and thrive in today's digital-first world.
     
    "We are pleased to announce SpotOn as our newest addition to the CHECK Business Tools program," said Adam Stinn, Director, Business Solutions, US Foods. “We are enthusiastic about our collaboration and its potential to empower US Foods customers with the necessary tools to modernize their operations."
     
    SpotOn and US Foods share a commitment to supporting restaurant operators with the same hospitality and support restaurants bring to their own communities nationwide. Together, they aim to empower restaurants with the resources, expertise, and technology solutions necessary to thrive in an ever-changing market. 
     
    Trusted by restaurants and venues across the United States, SpotOn invests in programming and activations to inspire restaurant owners and operators to run their businesses on their own terms with flexible technology, actionable data, and personalized service. Together with US Foods, SpotOn is paving the way for restaurant operators to leverage technology to address their most significant challenges, including workforce management, rising costs, and changing guest expectations.
  • 6/27/2024

    Dreamscape Hospitality Appoints Frank Solano As Senior Vice President of Revenue Management

    dreamscape
    Dreamscape Hospitality proudly announces the appointment of Frank Solano as Senior Vice President of Revenue Management. In this role, Solano will lead the company’s revenue management team to maximize each hotel’s topline strategy and execution. 
     
    Solano brings over 35 years of extensive experience in the hospitality industry. Most recently, he served as the Senior Vice President of Revenue Management for Aimbridge Hospitality, where he oversaw revenue strategy and hotel operations. His career also includes a significant tenure as Vice President of Asset Management, where he managed brand relations with IHG Hotels & Resorts and Hilton Hotels. Additionally, Solano worked for Wyndham Hotels for 20 years where he held various positions, including Vice President of Operations. 
     
    “We are excited to have Frank Solano on the Dreamscape Hospitality team,” said Adam Patenaude, president of Dreamscape Hospitality. “His vast experience and proven leadership in both revenue management and hotel operations will be invaluable as we continue to optimize and deliver exceptional results for our stakeholders.” 
     
    Beyond his professional achievements, Solano is actively involved in his community. He currently is a leader of the St. Ann Food Distribution Ministry, serves as a Eucharist Minister and is a patient advocate for both MD Anderson Cancer Center and the CanCare Support Network. 
     
    “I am looking forward to this next chapter of my career with Dreamscape Hospitality,” shared Frank Solano. “I am committed to leveraging my experience and working collaboratively with the team to enhance our revenue strategies and drive growth for the company.” 
  • 6/27/2024

    Instant Financial Launches Mobile App for Improved Employee Pay Flexibility

    instant logo

     

    Instant Financial, a pioneer of responsible earned wage access (EWA), electronic tips, and paycard solutions, has released its new Instant mobile app and enhanced mobile wallet functionality, providing employees with a faster, more secure app experience that gives them a greater degree of flexibility in how they receive their pay.

    Understanding that over 50% of Americans would likely avoid major financial pitfalls if they could instantly access a portion of their pay after every day’s work, the new Instant mobile app is narrowing this financial gap by placing financial empowerment directly into the hands of employees.

    The beta version of Instant’s app debuted in October at the 2023 HR Tech Conference & Expo, where event attendees were provided a sneak preview of the app’s new capabilities and functionality.

    Designed with accessibility and financial freedom in mind, the new Instant mobile app is released with a list of innovative new features and functionality including:

    • Faster Access to Earned Wages: Employees have access to their hard-earned wages in fewer steps, with an improved user interface (UI) and key elements surfaced more prominently within the app.
    • Modern Security Features: State-of-the-art security protocols, such as facial and fingerprint biometrics, multi-factor authentication, and encryption technologies protect user information and provide peace of mind.
    • Flexible Payment Options: Users have the freedom to choose how and when they access their wages. Whether it’s through direct deposit, the Instant card, or a mobile wallet, the new app offers a greater degree of flexibility for all employees, ensuring convenience for all.
    • Clear and Informative Design: With improvements to the user interface (UI), the app offers a user-friendly experience, empowering users to make informed choices and navigate the app confidently.
    • New Technology Framework: Underpinned by a new technology infrastructure, the new Instant mobile app is faster, more responsive, and built to allow for additional features and functionality to meet the needs of employees and how they are paid.

    “Employee demands regarding how they access their wages are constantly shifting, and our new app is meeting that head-on,” said Tal Clark, CEO of Instant Financial. “Whether it’s to cover unexpected expenses, avoid predatory loans, or simply to enjoy more control over their finances, Instant is continually revolutionizing the way people get paid.”

    By releasing this enhanced version of its mobile app experience, Instant is furthering its mission of delivering pay to employees, when they want, where they want, and how they want, all free of fees.

  • 6/26/2024

    Mirai Presents Mirai Twin

    Mirai Twin

    Mirai EMEA CEO Javier Delgado Muerza unveiled ‘Mirai Twin’ at Phocuswright Europe during an insightful panel discussion on the Metaverse. Mirai Twin is set to transform how potential guests experience hotels in the booking process, offering an immersive, 3D digital twin of properties using real drone footage produced by Mirai teams.

    With Mirai Twin, guests can experience the entire hotel before they arrive, enjoy a bird’s-eye view of the property, tour the facilities, admire the views, enter rooms, and get a genuine feel of the hotel from the comfort of their own home. Mirai Twin also offers the convenience of instant booking because it fully integrates with the booking engine at both the pricing and availability levels.

    This cutting-edge technology creates a 3D digital twin of the hotel, providing a 100% immersive and native experience across all devices—desktop, mobile, and tablet – allowing customers to explore every angle of the hotel, enhancing their decision-making process.

    Javier Delgado Muerza, CEO at Mirai said: “Our relationship with the Internet is evolving, and the hotel industry must adapt to meet the needs and increasing expectations of digital natives for whom soon the metaverse will become the norm. The line between the digital and real worlds is disappearing, and the hospitality sector faces the challenge of integrating the latest technologies to cater to these new users. Mirai Twin represents meaningful innovation, blending cutting-edge technology with a hotel’s standards in a profitable manner. The use of drone-captured images makes this technology ideal for hotels where guests value room selection, pool proximity, and view. Guests can live their experience even before arriving at the destination, making the most of their hotel experience.”

    José Santas, Sales, Marketing, and Revenue Management Director at Hoteles Santos (owner of the Las Arenas property), praises Mirai Twin: “We are delighted with this tool as not only does it enhances the guest’s ability to imagine their trip, making their pre-stay more memorable, ”

    Not only is Mirai Twin already implemented in Las Arenas Valencia, but also Luxor (hotel) Benidorm and Luxor (villas) Benidorm have done so too and experienced many benefits for their direct bookings such as:

    • Immersive experience for a hotel’s customers: through a realistic and disruptive representation, Mirai Twinallows customers to visualise the hotel in an innovative way. This helps them to understand all the competitive advantages and services offered by the hotel.
    • Differentiation from other hotels in the destination: hotels using real 3D images will stand out from the competition in the destination. The immersive experience creates an innovative and engaging impression for travellers, which can influence their purchase decision.
    • Differentiation of the direct channel: By using Mirai Twin the direct channel is differentiated from other booking channels. Customers can explore the hotel more fully and directly, which increases the likelihood of direct bookings.
    • Continuous and dynamic navigation: Navigation without floor plan sequences allows users to move freely through the virtual hotel. This creates a more dynamic and engaging experience, which can increase visitor retention on your website.
    • Booking engine integration: Mirai Twin is fully integrated with the booking engine both at the pricing and availability level as well as at the content level by automatically integrating all your photos, videos and 360 material.
    • Upselling at reception: The 3D model allows the reception team to show the hotel directly to guests in an innovative way. This facilitates commercial actions such as upselling, where specific rooms can be promoted in a very visual and attractive way. It can also be used as an interactive map of the hotel where all services and points of interest can be located.
    • Multi-device navigation: same immersive experience on desktop, tablets and mobile phones. This guarantees a consistent and engaging exploration regardless of the device used.
    • Full Internationalisation: Mirai Twin is translated into all the languages of your website.
    • Traceability and analytics: tracking the usage of the 3D model through your Business Intelligence and GA4 provides valuable information on user interaction with the digital twin at traffic and sales level.

    With a commitment to integrating cutting-edge technology seamlessly across desktop, mobile, and tablet platforms, and anticipating the growing importance of the metaverse, Mirai is well-prepared to expand Mirai Twin to other hotels globally, helping more properties increase their direct bookings and benefit from this transformative tool in the near future.

  • 6/26/2024

    Mews Survey Reveals 80% of Travelers Prefer Hotels with a Completely Automated Front Desk or Self-Service Technology

    mews logo

    The mad dash to take a summer vacation is underway, with three out of four travelers agreeing that Americans are prioritizing travel more in 2024. And when they travel, they are opting more for a highly digital, self-service experience when it comes to their hotel stays.

    A recent survey commissioned by Mews and conducted by OnePoll found that nearly 80% of travelers would be willing to stay at a hotel with a completely automated front desk or self-service kiosk, with more than 40% of them preferring to check in via a hotel’s website, app or digital kiosk.

    The poll of 2,000 – split evenly among travelers and hotel workers – also found that hotel workers anticipate guests to use technology more during their travels, with a fourth expecting them to check in more frequently via a hotel website, app or digital kiosk compared to previous years.

    Other key findings:

    • Travelers stated what a perfect hotel should include: in-room smart home devices. (43%), keyless room entry (34%), mobile room entry (27%), and digital ordering (24%)
    • A third (36%) admitted they have turned to AI for recommendations while booking travel.

    The study also found that nearly a third (29%) of employed Americans admitted they’ve worked remotely on vacation without telling their bosses:

    • 52% said they would use their vacations as a chance to work remotely.
    • Close to four in ten (39%) explained it was simply because they like what they do for work.
    • Others noted they would work on vacation to hit an important work deadline that overlapped with their vacation time (28%) or to save on their PTO (26%).
    • Four in five working Americans would be willing to work remotely from their hotel.
    • While working from the comfort of one’s hotel room is the top preference (69%), a quarter of respondents said they would prefer to work remotely from the hotel pool or spa, and nearly 25% chose a hotel bar or restaurant.

    On the other hand, those traveling for work admit business trips open the door to other opportunities. According to the survey results:

    • Nearly half (48%) of respondents have extended their work trips into vacations.
    • Hotel workers claimed guests traveling for work or blending work with vacations are the easiest to cater to (83% and 76%, respectively).
    • Hotel workers also anticipate guests will tip more (39%), extend their stay more frequently (38%), and use hotel amenities more (31%), and 79% said guests “always” or “often” ask for local recommendations.

    “Trends in hospitality are ever-changing but we’re seeing indicators that people are prioritizing travel again. While we’re seeing some softness in mid-market and select service hotels, the luxury sector seems resilient. Guests visiting luxury properties are spending more on bucket list trips and staying for longer,” said Richard Valtr, Founder of Mews. “We’re also seeing a continuous rise in people extending work trips for some added leisure time and blending work with vacations. The most forward-thinking hotels are tapping into this trend by embracing personalized guest experiences and offering a variety of amenities that appeal to differing guest needs. More and more hotels are adopting technology that creates seamless experiences for their guests, no matter the reason for their trip.”

    “Technology enables our teams to gather robust guest information before they
    arrive at one of our locations, which empowers our customer service teams to create unique 'excite and delight' opportunities for guests, resulting in powerful moments and lifelong memories for our guests,” commented Ryan Krukar, VP Sales & Marketing at Gravity Haus. “Identifying and understanding a guest's needs before they arrive at one of our locations and going above and beyond for guests is key in delivering authentic hospitality and provides additional value and comfort while simultaneously immersing a guest in the unique culture of the destination they are visiting.”

    “Anticipating guests’ needs is a crucial component to providing exceptional customer service throughout their stay,” said Andrew Gauthier, General Manager at The Incline Lodge. “By tracking individual attributes and preferences of new and returning guests, we can provide a truly curated experience for every guest that comes through our door. Technology also enables us to provide an easy and efficient contactless and self check-in process, so our staff can spend more of their time interacting with guests.”

     

    Survey methodology:

    This random double-opt-in survey of 1,000 American travelers and 1,000 American hotel workers was commissioned by Mews Systems, Inc. between January 30 and February 8, 2024. It was conducted by market research company OnePoll, whose team members are members of the Market Research Society and have corporate membership to the American Association for Public Opinion Research (AAPOR) and the European Society for Opinion and Marketing Research (ESOMAR).

  • 6/26/2024

    TAG Introduces ALBIE: A Brand New Booking Experience

    TAG logo

    The Anything Group (TAG), a premier full-service marketing agency specializing in hospitality solutions, proudly unveils ALBIE©, a groundbreaking booking experience, set to transform the hospitality sector. Designed to prioritize guest experience and hotel success, ALBIE© offers innovative features that streamline the booking process, enhance guest satisfaction, and maximize occupancy rates.

    Unparalleled Flexibility and Customization: Meet ALBIE©’s Cart System

    ALBIE© sets a new standard with its revolutionary Cart System. For the first time, guests can seamlessly book rooms and activities across multiple hotels and dates within the same group, all in a single transaction. This unique flexibility eliminates the hassle of navigating multiple booking platforms, saving guests valuable time and reducing frustration. By enhancing guest satisfaction and offering a broader range of booking options, ALBIE© enables hotels to maximize occupancy rates and boost direct revenue. Guests can customize their experience by reserving rooms, activities, or a combination of both, all in one streamlined process.

    Dynamic Stay Optimization and Enhanced Guest Experience

    ALBIE©’s Dynamic Stay Optimization takes the guesswork out of planning. The system automatically searches for available rooms within the same hotel on alternative dates or suggests other hotels within the group through its "flexible days” feature. For larger groups, ALBIE© prioritizes availability across all hotels within the chain. ALBIE© also includes a Group Recommendation feature, suggesting other hotels in the group that are close to the original search location to maximize sales opportunities. Additionally, ALBIE© offers a “Waitlist” feature, informing guests when their desired dates become available, ensuring they never miss out on their preferred stay.

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