2007 Hotel Technology Forum
Upcoming Events
Past Events

Theme: Shaping the Guest Experience
Meeting and Managing Expectations

Sunday, April 22, 2007 / Arrival Day
11:30 am - 5:30 pm GOLF
3:00 - 7:30 pm Registration
6:30 - 7:30 pm Welcome Cocktail Reception
7:30 pm on... Sponsor Activities / Dinners
Monday, April 23, 2007 / First Day of Sessions
8:30 am - 3:45 pm Registration
8:30 - 9:30 am Networking Breakfast
9:30 - 10:00 am

9:30-:33: Opening Remarks

9:33-:40: Remarks from Forum Honorary Chairperson – Barry Shuler, SVP Information Technology Strategy & CTO, Marriott International, Inc.

9:40-10:00: Presentation of HT Visionary Awards

  • Overall Technology Innovation
  • Exceeding Guest Expectations
  • Business Intelligence
10:00 - 10:50 am

Opening Keynote Address

Speaker: Tom Peck - CIO & SVP, MGM Mirage

Experiences are made. When it comes to shaping the experiences of your guests, consider it a multi-sensory event that should welcome them the moment they step onto your property and continue to delight throughout the length of their stay. From their first encounter at the front desk to their final check-out, each occasion to interact with guests is a golden opportunity to show them how much they're valued. Learn the secrets to shaping the guest experience in this compelling keynote address from Tom Peck, Chief Information Officer from MGM Mirage.

10:50 - 11:35 am

Networking Coffee Break

11:35 - 12:25 am

General Session #1 / Panel

I.T. Deployment Philosophy

Host/Moderator - Forum Honorary Chairperson: Barry L. Shuler - SVP Information Technology Strategy & CTO, Marriott International, Inc.

Speakers: Brian Garavuso - CIO, Hilton Grand Vacations Company; David Sjolander - VP Hotel Systems, Carlson Hotels Worldwide; Natasha Nelson - Corp. Director, Hotel Information Systems, Four Seasons; Todd Thompson, CIO, Starwood Hotels & Resorts

Technology meets philosophy in this in-depth panel discussion of the “what, when, where and why” of IT deployment. On this panel, three leading operators share their strategies regarding how to make sound IT deployment decisions. Our executives will examine the ROI drivers behind their decisions – from increased sales and customer satisfaction to greater efficiencies, productivity and cost savings, and most importantly, where guests' expectations fall into their strategies.

Attendee ROI

  • Strategies for IT deployment
  • ROI drivers for making technology deployment decisions
  • Results
12:25 - 1:50 pm

Networking Luncheon
* Including Topic Tables

1:50 - 2:40 pm

General Session #2

Giving Guests a Reason to Return

Host/Moderator: Gabriele Piccoli, Associate Professor, Cornell University , School of Hotel Administration (Center for Hospitality Research)

Speakers: Darrin Pinkham - VP Technology, Ginn Resorts; Jill Noblett - SVP Loyalty & Direct Marketing, Wyndham Hotel Group; Michelle Woodley, SVP Distribution & Marketing, Preferred Hotel Group

Give guests a reason to return, and they will. Loyalty and customer relationship management tools should take you beyond the casual discount offer, to truly entice guests with worthwhile benefits and satisfaction. A panel of leading operators will offer insights into how they have created and enhanced their successful loyalty programs.

Attendee ROI

  • How to enhance your existing customer loyalty program
  • How to achieve new levels of customer satisfaction and loyalty
  • Trends in lodging loyalty programs
2:40 - 3:25 pm

Networking Coffee Break

3:25 - 4:10 pm

General Session #3

Website Technology: Preparing Your Guest for the Experience

Speaker: Steve Watson, CFO, The Biltmore Company

A guest's first experience with any property – before they even walk through its doors – often occurs online. For one leading destination, Biltmore Estate, the Web site is an integral tool in preparing guests for what to expect, and helping them make the best use of their time and resources. In fact, more than 70% of Biltmore guests visit the Web site before arrival. This session goes behind the scenes on Website communication principles to show how properties can leverage their online presence to meet and manage guest expectations, and ensure a satisfying experience once they arrive.

Attendee ROI

  • Educating guests on possible activities/offerings at the property
  • Deciding what businesses to put on the Web, including tips on balancing information and e-commerce
  • Tactics for leveraging guest feedback, customer surveys, Website analysis and usability studies
5:30 - 6:30 pm

Cocktail Reception

Tuesday, April 24, 2007 / Closing Day
7:30 am - 12:15 pm Registration
7:30 - 8:15 am Continental Breakfast
8:15 - 8:20 am

Day Two Opening Comments

8:20 - 9:10 am

Second Day Keynote

Building and Scaling Infrastructure for Growth and New Technology

Speaker: Tom Conophy - CIO, InterContinental Hotels Group

Today's keynote will feature one of the industry's visionary CIOs who will offer a compelling picture of the growth opportunities and challenges that face the industry around technology. Tom Conophy from InterContinental Hotels Group will examine the best ways operators can build and scale IT infrastructure to take advantage of the opportunities to be found in next generation technologies, while also meeting the challenges of legacy systems and scalability.

Attendee ROI

  • Building infrastructure for new growth
  • Where next generation technology fit into the IT infrastructure
  • Meeting ongoing IT legacy and scalability challenges
9:10 - 10:00 am

General Session #4 / panel

In-Room Technology: An Investment in Guest Satisfaction

Host/Moderator: Daniel Connolly, Ph.D., Asst Professor of IT, University of Denver , Daniels College

Discussion Participants: Fred Crespo, Corporate Director of Information Systems, Rosewood Hotels & Resorts; Rajiv Castellino, CIO, Great Wolf Resorts; Tim Stanley, SVP Innovation, Gaming, Technology & CIO, Harrah's Entertainment

It's what's inside that counts. As guest expectations of the in-room experience rise, all hotels — from budget to luxury — are charged with providing more in-room amenities than ever before. This panel discusses such offerings as high-speed Internet access, flat-screen televisions, VoIP phones, video-on-demand and more, as well as how these offerings can become an investment in guest satisfaction.

Attendee ROI

  • “Amenity Creep” from high-end properties to budget
  • The latest trends in in-room guest services
  • Tips for achieving higher guest satisfaction with in-room amenities
10:00 - 10:45 am

Networking Coffee Break

10:45 - 11:30 am

General Session #5

Seamless and Stable Technology Integration

Speaker: Darla Morse, VP Information Technology, Walt Disney Parks & Resorts

With the magnitude of IT solutions available to hotel operators today, it's no wonder that integrating these systems to work together is a significant challenge. And yet, efficient technology integration is paramount to making the most out of what these systems have to offer. This session examines how Walt Disney Parks and Resorts integrate multiple systems into an overall technology platform that is seamless and stable.

Attendee ROI

  • Strategies for successful PMS integration
  • Meeting the challenges of PMS integration
  • Top drivers: why integrate?
11:30 - 12:15 pm

General Session #6

Guest Trends To Watch

Speaker: Jim Hartigan - SVP Customer, Quality and Performance Support, Hilton Hotels Corporation

What do your guests really want? Answers to this million dollar question are revealed when an innovative hotel executive shares compelling research regarding guest desires, and taking current and future trends to assure their guest satisfaction. This session explores how Hilton goes beyond technology to cover guest trends as they relate to property features and amenities, economic factors and the travel industry overall.

Attendee ROI

  • Gauging the impact of guest trends on guest behavior
  • The economic factors impacting guest spending
  • How to track guest trends
12:15 - 1:00 pm Closing Networking Luncheon
1:00 pm 2007 Hotel Technology Forum Officially Concludes