BITAC of course is the industry leading one-on-one meetings and relationship building event. Held at the Westin Diplomat Resort Spa, the sold out BITAC Purchasing & Design East hotel industry brought buyers and suppliers came together this week to network, sign deals and exchange ideas that will move forward the quality of experiences for hotel guests. That’s because it’s a fundamentally focused idea exchange where buyers and suppliers can work through solutions together that yield both sides more profitable results.
A cornerstone of every BITAC event – there are currently seven annually with an additional two being added next year (http://www.hotelinteractive.com/article.aspx?articleid=25173) our educational panels cut through the clutter to educate and empower hoteliers to be more successful both personally and professionally. And at this year’s sold out BITAC Purchasing & Design East, we looked to the conference’s brain trust to make the news. That’s right, we love engaging our attendees by asking attendees their opinions regarding some of the most critical issues facing the hospitality industry today. By utilizing a real time voting system we’re able to uncover from our sold out crowd what is really going on with critical industry trends.
For today we thought we’d share how leaders in hospitality that attended BITAC see the trends. Here are their thoughts.
First up is the big ADA pool lift requirement. As you may know we have been following this issue intensely as disability coalition groups have called for a boycott of hotels without pool lifts. However, this coalition appears to be grandstanding and not being completely genuine with their approach. Last we reported on the boycott and the week before that in a piece called Pool Lift Pandemonium that laid out why Department of Justice is completely wrong and also dispelled special interest group rhetoric while also providing a realistic solution every reasonable person should agree with.
Here is what BITAC attendees believe about the issue and what they think will happen:
In regards to the ADA’s pool lift requirement you believe:
Disability coalition groups are right - 3.5%
Hotel business associations are right - 25%
All groups need to agree to a smart compromise - 72%
How do you think the pool lift issue will be ultimately settled?
Fixed Lifts will ultimately be required for all pools/hot tubs - 17.5%
Only ‘resort’ hotels will require them, but must be fixed - 8%
Only ‘resort’ hotels will require them, but can be portable - 22%
The ADA will allow temporary lifts - 46%
Lifts will not be required at all - 7%
If pool lifts are ultimately required, then:
Brands will change standards and no new polls will be built - 2%
Pools will only be built at ‘resort’ hotels - 9%
Many owners will close pools permanently- 31%
Will be business as usual - 31%
All of the above - 28%
Here is how attendees felt about other issues affecting the hospitality industry:
How do you see lead times affected for your current renovation projects?
Shorter - 41%
Longer - 40%
The same as in previous cycles - 20%
Though business seems to be on the uptick and you’re busy; are you hiring?
Yes - 50%
We’d like to but afraid it won’t last - 18%
We’re toying with the idea - 23%
No plans to hire – 41%
We are downsizing – 2%
Do you think guests will soon want to control elements in their hotel room with their smartphones?
Not for long time - 9%
It’s coming soon - 40%
They’re already asking for this technology - 37%
Nah, no need for that - 15.6%
Do you believe you will be able to keep expenses in check as we enter this upcycle?
Absolutely - 21.5%
Probably - 35%
Not sure - 12%
Expenses will surely rise - 32%