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Peabody Orlando's Reflective Redesign

A key element is lighted mirrors.

Thursday, March 03, 2011
Scott Kauffman
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As part of the newly expanded Peabody Orlando’s recent $450-million expansion, which almost doubled the hotel’s total number of rooms to 1,641, the hotel featured 1,500 new lighted mirrors.

According to design firm Wilson Associates, the new guestrooms in the new 32-story tower that opened last September feature the Peabody Dream Bed, high definition 42-inch LCD televisions, mini LCD TVs in the bathroom mirrors, complimentary in-room refrigerators, cordless telephones and Wi-Fi Internet access.

The existing guestrooms were also renovated with contemporary design and luxurious decor and furnishings, creating a seamless transition into the new tower. The lighted mirror TVs were one of the highlights.

“The Peabody guestroom bath design combines the elegance of custom artwork, millwork, and plumbing fixtures with the latest technology, including a fog free lighted mirror with integral television capabilities, that in turn provide the ultimate in modern guest experience,” said Paul Adams, interior designer at Wilson & Associates.

The Everett, Washington-based Electric Mirror is one of the industry’s leaders when it comes to high-profile lighted mirror products. Over the years, Electric Mirror has completed hundreds of lighted mirror hospitality television projects with leading hotels. Among the big-name clients are Mandarin Oriental at CityCenter Las Vegas, the Ritz Carlton Los Angeles at LA Live, Fairmont Pacific Rim in Vancouver, British Columbia, Trump International Hotel & Tower Chicago and MGM Skylofts Las Vegas.

Electric Mirror president and chief designer Jim Mischel said he has received a record number of calls over the past year from distressed hotel owners and purchasing agents concerning problems with competitors’ imported mirror products. The typical issues are quality, delivery, replacements and service.

To avoid these setbacks, Mischel suggestsed avoiding low-quality mirrors that are prone to desilvering.

“Not all imported mirrors are created equal,” Mischel added. “Price is an important factor in the purchasing decision process, but quality matters too. Is the price too good to be true? It only takes one really bad imported product to destroy your hotel's reputation. When pricing starts to get too low you can be sure you are sacrificing quality and service, and ultimately your reputation.

“Electric Mirror has a proprietary process that avoids desilvering and ensures a longer product life,” he continued. “We institute the same mirror quality requirements in our Cordova imported collection as we do our U.S.-made Electric Mirror collection.”

Mischel added that it’s also important to choose a company that backs imports with U.S. production. For instance, over the last few years, Chinese manufacturers of lighted mirrors have shown a proclivity for going out of business, catching many importers off guard, according to Electric Mirror. To eliminate supply risk, purchasing agents should buy from manufacturers who back up their imported products with U.S. production.

Finally, Mischel said it is important to check for UL approval and not take it for granted. According to Mischel, some purchasing agents and hotel owners fail to request certified documents showing valid UL or international approvals. The lack of such approvals not only makes the unsafe products ripe for field removal by local electrical inspectors, but also poses a liability to both the manufacturer and hotel owner.

“The hospitality industry is undergoing significant changes in the way television content is provided throughout the hotel,” Mischel said. “At one time it was acceptable to install a consumer or non-hospitality television in a hotel bathroom. Today it is considered a major mistake.

“Installing a consumer television brings with it the risk that a hotel will be outdated before it even opens. Soon there will be no effective way to use a consumer television with today’s hospitality content providers. A hospitality TV is the only way to play premium high-definition channels and other video-on-demand content.”

Scott Kauffman
Hotel Interactive® Editorial Division

Bio: Scott Kauffman is a leading journalist on golf course development and luxury resort and real estate development worldwide. Kauffman has 25 years of journalism experience, including full-time writing and editing positions with the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, USA Today and Orlando Sentinel newspapers, and Golfweek Group magazines. Over the last 12 years, the award-winning writer has specialized in golf course real estate and resort development and been published by more than 30 regional ...
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