Established in 1906, the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino is a small, family-owned hotel-casino with a friendly, intimate atmosphere. Last year, management made the decision to renovate this 106-room property to include a new property management system (PMS) and point of sale (POS) solution that would not only offer increased features and functionality, but would also interface with hotel's player tracking system.
After looking at a number of solutions, management decided that SQL server-based systems would serve its needs most effectively, and selected the Visual One property management system and the InfoGenesis POS solution, both by Agilysys.
Functionality, price and support
This past summer, management installed and trained approximately 70 employees with the new PMS and POS in three weeks: one week of installation and "go live' and two weeks of training.
Functionality was the primary reason for Golden Gate's selection of these solutions as both solutions are Windows-based and interface seamlessly. The Visual One suite is tightly integrated, using the same database and providing real-time information exchanges, while the InfoGenesis POS has an accessible user interface. Golden Gate's food & beverage director was also already familiar with the system and especially appreciated its reporting capabilities.
Price and support also factored into management's decision. The price point was right for both systems and management knew the support would be there if they needed it based on previous experiences with Agilysys.
Enhancing the guest experience
With the Visual One property management system, management can post POS charges from its bars, restaurants and casino directly to guestroom accounts. The accounts receivable module is particularly helpful for the hotel's group business and the Web-booking engine gives them the ability to forecast and manage inventory more accurately, a function that was not available in Golden Gate's former system.
The InfoGenesis solution features Internet credit card processing capabilities, which speeds up the customer settlement process when compared to the hotel's former modem processing. The reporting functions in the InfoGenesis POS are also very intuitive, enabling managers to build exactly the reports they need. The InfoGenesis solution also interfaces seamlessly to Golden Gate's Oasis player tracking system, so its marketing department can target promotions based on guest purchasing habits. Management even installed a remote InfoGenesis POS terminal at the outdoor service bar so that guests can purchase their favorite beverages with their player tracking cards.
Management's tech tips
Management for the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino feels that technology should serve a two-fold purpose: to streamline operations and improve the guest experience. The Visual One PMS and InfoGenesis POS enables the Golden Gate Hotel & Casino to do both with ease. Since implementing these solutions, management has improved productivity in nearly every area of operations and is delivering enhanced guest service from arrival through departure. Before making such an important selection, management urges operators to keep the following tips in mind:
- Make sure the system you select provides all of the functionality needed to perform business objectives.
- Take the time to comparison-shop at least three systems.
- Contact current users and other IT directors to get a good feel for the product's strengths and weaknesses.
Lon Jerome is the director of information technology at Golden Gate Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas. He has a BA in business communications from Concordia University in St. Paul, Minn. and has worked in the casino technology field for 15 years. His experience includes property start-ups, management of IT at multiple properties, system installations and conversions, and day-to-day IT management.