Hotel Management recently completed a GM survey that highlighted several trends in hotel upgrades for 2012, which showed that 35 percent of GMs plan to make a significant technology purchase in 2011.
The survey showed that 29 percent of hotel GMs are considering upgrading their televisions as the next step in their hotel's improvement. Along those lines, in mid-October it was announced that every room in the main tower of Las Vegas' MGM Grand would receive a large-scale makeover that included installation of flat-panel televisions in all of the rooms. When reporting on room renovations, hotels are quick to announce the implementation of new televisions, as did the Courtyard Hanover Whippany Hotel in Whippany, N.J., which recently completed a $2 million renovation that included touch-screen LCD TVs placed in each of the guestrooms.
Behind television upgrades, 27 percent of GMs agree that changes must be made to the hotel industry's distribution of wireless Internet. With iPads soaking up the readily available Wi-Fi offered by many hotels, it isn't surprising to see hoteliers offering free Wi-Fi and advertising it as a new commodity as more and more hotels begin to charge for wireless services. The good news is that many GMs are aware of the problems their hotels have with their lack of Wi-Fi or substantial bandwidth, with many of them prioritizing upgrades to those services through the use of newly implemented Wi-Fi systems.
Other aspects of the poll showed that 14 percent of GMs said they wanted to prioritize upgrading room lighting, 10 percent were seeking enhancements to in-room entertainment, 7 percent wanted to upgrade the room's telephones and 4 percent are focused on PMS options.
Hotel Management's annual Voice of the GM survey will be published in the November issue of Hotel Management magazine.