Monthly Archives: November 2010

Special Pricing for IMEX America Now Available at Venetian/Palazzo

IMEX America has announced that specially priced rooms are now available for booking at their Headquarters Hotels in Las Vegas, the Venetian/Palazzo. Special rates apply for both attendees and exhibitors who plan to be at the new trade show for the global meetings, incentive travel and events industry when it launches in Las Vegas October 11-13 next year.

The IMEX Group has agreed significant early-bird discounts with the Venetian/Palazzo to give the show’s attendees and exhibitors a strong incentive to stay over in the city and to book their accommodation well in advance. Buyer attendees can take advantage of rates of just $129 per night, and for suppliers the early bird rates begin at $189 plus resort fee. Room bookings are available online via the ‘Register interest’ link on the IMEX America website: http://www.imexamerica.com/users_prereg_interest.php

The trade show’s unique business model ensures that a series of high level educational events and association conferences are scheduled to take place in Las Vegas both before and after the show. The result will be more than 40 meetings industry events across five days including the Site Annual Conference, Site Nite North America, IMEX America Association Day presented by ASAE and IAEE’s CEM certification program. In addition, PCMA will be co-locating their International Summit alongside the new show.
As the major education provider and strategic partner for IMEX America, MPI (Meeting Professionals International) will be building its well-known MeetDifferent education into the show. MeetDifferent at IMEX America will include an innovative and inspiring learning experience the day before the show opens, which will offer attendees a choice of 15 different creative programs. In addition MPI will provide three powerful morning keynotes each day before the show starts. These will be delivered by experts who are true change-agents within their fields. MPI will also host a series of webinars (beginning October 2010) focusing on key thought leadership initiatives. These will provide a small taste of the live MeetDifferent learning experience.

Strong calendar attraction
The strength of this total educational package will make the IMEX America week a strong calendar attraction for thousands of industry buyers and suppliers from the US, Canada and other world markets and gives them good reason to take advantage of the accommodation packages available.
Las Vegas is one of the world’s leading destinations for meetings and events and hosts over 20,000 meetings, conventions and exhibitions per year. Las Vegas Convention & Visitors Authority (LVCVA) research shows that events that move to the city experience an increase in attendance of approximately 14 per cent and visitors to exhibitions in the city spend 2.5 – 5 hours longer on the show floor.

Although show registration doesn’t open until Spring 2011, interested attendees and exhibitors can take advantage of the hotel room discounts by following this Register Interest link – http://www.imexamerica.com/users_prereg_interest.php.

IMEX America will bring a unique model of trade show to the US. It is based on a carefully audited, high quality and large scale hosted buyer program attracting over 2,000 buyers to the show. Intermediaries working with IMEX America to select hosted buyers include Maritz Travel, Carlson Marketing, Conference Direct, Experient, HelmsBriscoe, Global Cynergies, HPN, Starwood Hotels and Resorts, Marriott Hotels, Intercontinental Hotels, Rezidor, Mandarin Oriental, Ritz Carlton, Millenium Hotels, MPI, PCMA, ASAE and Northstar Meetings Group.

About IMEX America
The new trade show for the worldwide meetings, events and incentive travel industry; the inaugural IMEX America will take place October 11-13, 2011 at the Sands Expo at the Venetian/Palazzo Hotel. The show’s strategic partner and major educational provider is MPI. It is endorsed by DMAI and Site and has an Industry Partnership with PCMA. Other supporting partners are: ACTE Global, AIPC, ASAE, CIC, ECM, IAEE, JMIC, ICCA, The Venetian and The Palazzo and the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority.

IMEX America will offer a unique model of trade show, new to the US market. It will assure exhibitors of meeting and making business appointments on their booths with in excess of 2,000 highly qualified hosted buyers. The majority (80 per cent) of these hosted buyers will come from North America, with the balance from the rest of the world. In addition thousands of additional US buyer attendees are expected to attend from across North America. Entrance to the show and its educational program is entirely free of charge.

Exhibitors and buyers can register their interest in IMEX America and gain access to great accommodation discounts at http://www.imex-america.com/users_prereg_interest.php

ALHI Debuts 2010-11 “Art of Distinction” Hotel & Resort Meeting Guide

. . . Featuring Over 100,000 Rooms & 10 Million Square Feet of Options

WASHINGTON, DC — Associated Luxury Hotels International (ALHI) has just published its much anticipated and new “2010-2011 ALHI National Sales Guide To Meeting Facilities,” the ultimate directory from which to choose resorts and hotels of distinction which are specifically designed and operated for meetings, incentive/recognition programs, conventions, and exhibitions (MICE).

“Since ALHI recognizes planners’ talents and contributions to a meeting’s success as an ‘Art,’ and our ALHI portfolio features unique and distinctive meeting options, the directory is themed as the ‘Art of Distinction,’” said David Gabri, president and CEO of ALHI. “Our comprehensive 162-page annual directory features over 100,000 rooms and over 10 million square feet of incredible meeting space options, providing ALHI the ‘distinction’ of literally the very best portfolio for meetings and conventions in the upper-tier and luxury set. Our guide is designed for planners and executives to work together with us to build a successful and distinctive event with ALHI’s portfolio of more than 125 Four- and Five-Diamond quality hotels and resorts worldwide.”

Established in 1986, ALHI (www.alhi.com) is a prestigious dues-based National Sales organization, which is dedicated exclusively and authorized specifically by the members it serves. There is no cost to executives’ or planners’ organizations to utilize the National Sales services of ALHI, as its members’ dues fund the national sales organization to serve planners in their regions.

Featuring large photography, with easy-to-find “at a glance” descriptions and critical facts about each property, the guide presents ALHI’s distinctive worldwide portfolio of extraordinary meeting and incentive resorts, remarkable city hotels, exclusive smaller hotels, island destinations, golf resorts, historic and landmark properties, and resorts with spas. ALHI’s portfolio now provides over 100,000 rooms and suites, and over 10 million square feet of meeting space, providing an array of ALHI options and destinations for planners.

“Our annual guide has proven to be an extremely valuable and sought after resource for planners and organization executives,” said Gabri. “It is a terrific tool to develop and consider options for large and small meetings, special incentive/recognition programs, annual conventions, and important executive retreats and board meetings.”

Gabri continued, “It is a useful tool that our Industry Advisory Council has helped us develop for their needs, and can be used extensively to discuss possibilities and narrow options for programs of all types. Planners express to us that they love the table-top format which provides an overview of each of our outstanding member hotels and resorts, as well as ‘quick on the facts’ detailed information about their accommodations, meeting spaces and facilities, unique attributes and access.”

For even easier navigations, new in the guide this year is a section on ALHI’s newly defined specialty segments that make it even easier for planners to identify properties that could suit their particular desires and needs. The new specialty segments include: the “ALHI Level 5 Collection” consisting of ALHI’s 17 member hotels and resorts that have earned the highest and most distinctive recognitions including the prestigious AAA Five-Diamond rating, and/or the esteemed Forbes (Mobil) Five-Star rating; and the “ALHI Big Box 5-50 Collection,” featuring ALHI’s 27 member hotels and resorts that offer more than 500 rooms, feature over 50,000 square feet of meeting space, and have at least one 20,000-square-foot ballroom. Other specialty segments include: the “Mountain Resorts Collection,” for planners desiring to conduct programs with inspiring mountain views; the “ALHI Historic Collection,” consisting of 36 legendary hotels and resorts with more than 50 years of heritage; and the “ALHI U-200 Gems Collection,” consisting of ALHI members with 200 rooms or under, which specialize in serving meeting and incentive programs.

Planners Value Resource
“This convenient information sourcebook, combined with the expertise of our helpful ALHI National Sales team professionals, helps planners identify potential and often ideal solutions for their specific programs,” said Gabri. “It is an idea book. It provides a comprehensive base of knowledge to help the planner review potential options for their next meeting, convention or incentive/recognition program; and share the concepts with colleagues.”

Gabri continued, “Our National Sales team is experienced in providing great detail and sharing insight on the portfolio of the properties of interest. Once we narrow the options with planners, we also use our website www.alhi.com to provide planners incremental details, photos, videos, destination information, and other vital information to advance ideas internally and externally. The combination has become very popular with planners we serve, all leading up to specific property site visits which we arrange.”

Meeting professionals, association executives, and incentive specialists have utilized ALHI’s National Sales services for nearly 25 years, with reliable one-call professional sales assistance and access to their distinctive hotels and resorts for meetings and incentive/recognition programs ranging from 10 to more than 5,000 rooms.

“This guide really is a ‘friend’ for planners who seek quality, imaginative, impeccable, and motivating venues for their programs, which can often provide the very best return on investment (ROI),” added Gabri. ”So whether you’re seeking distinctive resort, city, entertainment, international, and/or incentive solutions, ALHI has it, and this new ALHI Guide will be an invaluable resource.”

To request a free copy of the new 2010-2011 ALHI “Art of Distinction” facilities guide, and for more information about ALHI and its distinctive member hotels and resorts, call toll-free 866-303-ALHI (2544), or contact one of ALHI’s 16 professionally-staffed National Sales offices with locations in Washington, DC, Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Kansas City, Louisville, New York City, North Carolina, Orange County (CA), Orlando, Philadelphia, Richmond, San Diego, and Toronto. Go to www.alhi.com to identify the “ALHI Contacts” sales professionals in your state/area.

25 Great WinterFest Things To Do in Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country

TEMECULA VALLEY Southern California Wine Country: November 17, 2010 – Colorful WinterFest ambiance, festive holiday glow, and great cheer beckon in Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country, November 26 through January 2. “VisitTemecula.org is happy to share 25 of the greatest ways to celebrate the season,” explains Kimberly Adams, Temecula Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau president and CEO. “These 5 ideas each for Food and Wine Lovers, the Great Outdoors, Authentic and Cultural Experiences, Romantic Get-Aways, and The Ladies – or mix and match – make it easy to experience so much of WinterFest in just a few days!” The casual, picturesque valley is centrally located about an hour southeast of Orange County and southwest of Palm Desert; and one and a half hours southeast of Los Angeles.

For Food & Wine Lovers
1. Old Town Temecula 10 specialty food shops (white truffle olive oil, wild game jerky) and Saturday Farmers Markets (dragon fruit, fingered citron).
2. Temecula Valley Wine Country, 30+ wineries: wines for family celebrations, entertaining, gift-giving.
3. Dine @ Pechanga Resort & Casino: greatest steaks, Italian, seafood, Pan-Asian, pub, clubhouse; plus Caffé Cocoa’s handmade truffles.*
4. Old Town’s 8 wine establishments (port-style Bacio, Tribordo) and 19 unique, restaurants, cafés.*
5. Christmas Eve, Christmas Day: extraordinary menus; Pechanga Resort & Casino, Temecula Creek Inn, Old Town Temecula, Temecula Valley Wine Country.*
* Reservations required or recommended.

In The Great Outdoors
1. Greatest golf (courses recently over-seeded): Journey at Pechanga, Temecula Creek Inn (daily including 12/24-25, 31; 1/1).*
2. Old Town Temecula Holiday Ice Skating: go for a spin (daily including 12/24-25, 31; 1/1). After: gingerbread lattes, peppermint mochas.*
3. Join friends, family: Temecula Valley Wine Country hot air balloon ride; lifetime memory. Available daily including 12/24-25, 31; 1/1.*
4. Santa Rosa Plateau Ecological Reserve: spectacular @ 2000 feet; trails for hiking, dogs on leash.
5. MUST do: walk Old Town Temecula after-dark; 10s of 1000s twinkling holiday lights. Photographer’s dream!
* Reservations required or recommended.

For Authentic and Cultural Experiences
1. Be enthralled: Christmas Carol, Old Town Temecula Community Theater; toast kindness, goodwill w/ peppermint martinis.*
2. Don skates, glide: Holiday Ice Skating Rink, Old Town Temecula (daily including 12/24-25, 31; 1/1).*
3. Old Town Temecula Farmers Markets, Saturday AMs: sweetest navel oranges, tangerines; more.
4. Catch dazzling Nutcracker ballet, Old Town Temecula Community Theater. After: dine in Old Town.*
5. BE HERE for New Year’s Eve! Pechanga Resort & Casino’s 7 mega-parties; The Great Temecula Grape Drop: both East Coast, West Coast countdowns.
* Reservations required or recommended.

For A Romantic Get-Away
1. Romantic holiday excitement, Pechanga Resort & Casino: slots, table games; luxurious spa; delicious dining; live headliner entertainment; buzz-worthy clubs; lucky you!*
2. Glide together: Holiday Ice Skating, Old Town Temecula (daily including 12/24-25, 31; 1/1); romantic dinner after.*
3. Romance of nature: Santa Rosa Plateau Ecological Reserve; picnic, listen for wintering songbirds.
4. Romantic dinner and cruise, Temecula Valley Wine Country: vine dining; magical, holiday lights.*
5. Wine Country spa experience: ‘Time to Breathe’ couples massage; happy, relaxed, holiday sigh.*
* Reservations required or recommended.

For The Ladies (Friends, Mothers, Sisters, Daughters)
1. Old Town Temecula’s 60+, fascinating shops; pomegranate margaritas, carne asada.
2. Winery to winery (30+; 15 with gift shops), Temecula Valley Wine Country; plus do holiday lunch.
3. Pechanga Resort & Casino: exciting, 24/7 slots, table games; dining; entertainment; lucky ladies!*
4. Escape at Journey, then spa: wonderful golf along Pechanga Creek; hot stone massage, quiet serenity bath.*
5. Holiday Ice Skating, Old Town Temecula. After: raspberry kiss coffee with Godiva chocolate.*
* Reservations required or recommended.

To learn more about Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country please go to www.VisitTemecula.org or call 888/363-2852.

***PLEASE NOTE: Information is believed to be accurate but is subject to change. Please call ahead for the latest details.

Temecula Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau:
VisitTemecula.org is the official website of the Temecula Valley Convention & Visitors Bureau, a 501(c)6 non-profit organization that is the region’s official resource for visitors, and that stimulates tourism and economic development by promoting Temecula Valley Southern California Wine Country.

Travel + Leisure Names InterContinental Montelucia Resort & Spa to List of World’s Best Awards 50 Top Resorts in US/Canada

Ranked #13 in the U.S./Canada, InterContinental Montelucia is the #1 rated resort in Arizona

SCOTTSDALE, Ariz. – TRAVEL + LEISURE announced its 2010 World’s Best Awards and InterContinental Montelucia Resort & Spa was named to its Top 50 Resorts in the U.S. and Canada. Ranked #13, the Resort is the highest rated property in the state of Arizona.

The annual poll names the very best in travel, from hotels to cities to islands, along with all of the operators and outfitters who make the journey possible. This year marks the first time InterContinental Montelucia Resort & Spa has achieved this distinction.

“Achieving this outstanding recognition from the readers of Travel + Leisure is something we have aspired to since opening in 2008,” said Managing Director Valeriano Antonioli. “This honor exemplifies the commitment to providing our guests exceptional service in a setting unlike any other in the world.”

The list, comprised of the fifty best resorts in the U.S. and Canada, names three other Arizona properties, L’Auberge de Sedona, Royal Palms Resort & Spa and The Phoenician. The results of the World’ Best Awards are compiled through a questionnaire created by the editors of TRAVEL + LEISURE magazine and completed by its readers. To protect the integrity of the data respondents were screened by Travel + Leisure and responses from any identified travel-industry professionals who completed the survey were eliminated from the final tally. Respondents were asked to rate hotels on five characteristics. For each characteristic, respondents were asked to rate a candidate on a scale of 1 to 5, where “5” means excellent and “1” means poor. Required component ratings were then averaged, creating an overall score. A minimum number of responses were necessary for a candidate to be eligible for inclusion in the World’s Best Awards listings.

To view the exclusive list, please visit http://www.travelandleisure.com/worldsbest/2010/hotels

For additional information on InterContinental Montelucia Resort and Spa or for reservations, please call (480) 627-3200 or visit www.icmontelucia.com

About InterContinental Montelucia Resort & Spa:
Set in the breathtaking foothills of Camelback Mountain in Scottsdale, Arizona, InterContinental Montelucia Resort & Spa features 293 guest rooms including 39 suites and 2 presidential suites, as well as 34 multi-million dollar privately-owned villas on 34 acres of lush desert landscape. Taking luxury to a new level, the resort offers 24-hour concierge service, five pools, six unique dining venues including the signature restaurant Prado, four bars, the 31,000 square foot opulent Joya spa, boutique shopping, wedding chapel and 27,000 square-feet of meeting space including multiple ballrooms and other luxuries for use by resort guests and villa owners. InterContinental Montelucia Resort & Spa opened November 4, 2008 as a signature property for the InterContinental Hotels Group PLC of the United Kingdom [LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs)], the world’s largest hotel group by number of rooms. InterContinental Montelucia Resort & Spa, 4949 E. Lincoln Drive, Paradise Valley, AZ 85253, for more information or reservations, visit www.icmontelucia.com or call 480-627-3200.

AH&LA Wins Three HSMAI Adrian Awards

Association wins a Gold, Silver, Bronze

Washington, D.C., November 2010 — The American Hotel & Lodging Association (AH&LA) has received three awards for its winning entries in the 54th annual Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International (HSMAI) Adrian Awards competition.

The American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation (AH&LEF) Joe McInerney Challenge for the 2009 Annual Giving Campaign won a Gold in public relations excellence; the launch of the AH&LA student chapters won a Silver in public relations excellence; and AH&LA’s centennial celebration won a bronze in public relations excellence.

The Gold Adrian Award submission for the Foundation’s 2009 Annual Campaign focused on AH&LA President/CEO Joe McInerney’s challenge to the industry that if AH&LEF met their fundraising goal, he would work at a hotel for a day in any capacity. The campaign not only met, but exceeded the goal in what was considered one of the worst economies the nation has seen.

The Silver Adrian Award recognized the success of AH&LA’s student chapters. Beginning with six pilot chapters in 2009, the program opened to all universities in early 2010. Within six months of opening, eight additional schools signed on, and student membership more than doubled.

The Bronze Adrian Award honored the association’s year-long centennial celebration, which included the development of a comprehensive microsite, 7-minute video, a 30-second in-room guest channel video, coffee table book, and more.

AH&LA will receive the awards during the annual HSMAI Adrian Awards Gala, a black-tie affair attended by more than 1,000 hospitality, travel, and tourism marketing executives, on January 31, 2011, at the New York Marriott Marquis.

Founded in 1927, HSMAI is an individual membership organization comprising more than 7,000 members worldwide, with 40 chapters in the Americas. The Adrian Awards honor excellence in travel marketing, advertising, and PR. This year’s contest attracted nearly 1,100 entries from around the world, with entries judged by top executives from all sectors of the industry.

New Technology Primer Helps Hoteliers Create ADA Friendly Web Presence

Latest Offering in Response to Latest Regulations

Washington, November 2010 — A new resource from the American Hotel & Lodging Association, Creating an Accessible Web Presence for the Lodging Industry, teaches hoteliers how to create an online accessibility strategy, while increasing business, boosting customer loyalty, and complying with the law.

Ensuring an accessible Web site is equally important as ensuring accessible physical facilities – and, it’s the law. A disability is not simply blindness, deafness, or paralysis. Many impairments – from arthritis to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder to color blindness—prevent people from fully utilizing the Internet. Additionally, the population of people with disabilities is a large one, and as the enormous Baby Boomer generation ages, the number of people worldwide with disabilities will increase significantly.

Users with different disabilities have different needs. A visually-impaired online visitor using assistive technology such as a screen reader will perceive site content far differently than one who has a hearing impairment. The primer helps hoteliers look at every aspect of their site and ensure all content is usable and understandable no matter how it is presented, and that it integrates seamlessly with other platforms like social media networks and mobile devices.

The primer covers a wide range of areas and provides solutions that can be easily implemented:

• What is a disability, how many Americans live with one
• How do users with disabilities interact with the Web
• How can my organization build an accessible Website
• Why is an accessible digital presence critical to the success of my business, how will it put “heads in beds”
• What is the law regarding people with disabilities accessing online information
• How can I be sure I’m compliant with accessibility laws and standards

“Creating an Accessible Web Presence for the Lodging Industry” is the newest publication in the Technology 101 Primer Series, which also includes Principals of Privacy, Technology Security Primer: The Fundamentals of Systems & Security Maintenance, E-Commerce: Frequently Asked Questions, Hotel Technology Infrastructure, Tech Primer: Revenue Management, and Tech Primer: Telecommunications in the Hospitality Industry.

Spearheaded by the AH&LA Technology Committee, the publication’s funding was procured from the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Foundation (AH&LEF), the not-for-profit affiliate of AH&LA.
The primer is $10 for members and $20 for nonmembers. To purchase “Principles of Privacy” online, visit AH&LA’s Website or call AH&LEF’s Educational Institute at (800) 752-4567 or (517) 372-8800. Outside the U.S. and Canada, call (407) 999-8100. Members can access the primer for free on the Members Only section of AH&LA’s Website at www.ahla.com/members_login.asp.

IMEX Turns up the Green Heat with New Carbon-Free European Rail Tickets

A new ticket initiative from German rail company and IMEX in Frankfurt travel partner, Deutsche Bahn (DB), will allow the trade show to provide carbon free train travel to all of its European hosted buyers in 2011.

The tickets will be available to all hosted buyers travelling to the Frankfurt trade show from anywhere in continental Europe. The ticket, called “Umwelt-Plus”, guarantees that Deutsche Bahn will only use renewable energy for all hosted buyer rail tickets. Unlike compensatory measures, “Umwelt Plus” avoids carbon dioxide emissions altogether since the electricity used is produced exclusively from renewable energy sources in Germany. DB purchases the amount of renewable energy required for journeys in advance. This additional energy replaces the energy from other sources in the rail power grid.

Once the show is over, IMEX will receive a certificate showing the total carbon dioxide saving made as a result of the new green tickets. Last year nearly 900 hosted buyers travelled to IMEX in Frankfurt by rail, coming in from Germany, Brussels, Amsterdam, Zurich and Paris.

Deutsche Bahn’s commitment to using greener energy and investing in ecological and carbon free power plants is behind the new ticket option. IMEX will pay a small levy on top of its normal ticket price to support carbon free travel. The new ticket further reinforces the IMEX Group’s ongoing efforts to reduce the show’s environmental impact and, in particular, to reduce waste wherever possible.

Two years ago IMEX introduced the first ever biodegradable visitor badges made from recycled and recyclable paper badges coated in corn-starch laminate. The company also runs the only Green Awards in the international meetings industry and last year offered the option of hydroelectric power to all of its exhibitors.

Each year IMEX in Frankfurt sets new recycling targets for the show. In 2010, following a concerted campaign to educate stand-builders and exhibitors, 87 per cent of the show’s waste was recycled and total waste output was reduced by 30 tonnes compared to 2009. In all, 32 tonnes of paper and 29 tonnes of cardboard waste were recycled during IMEX in Frankfurt 2010.

A new initiative called The Green Team also encouraged exhibitors to follow two out of three ‘green’ steps in return for wearing a green lapel ribbon that demonstrated their environmental commitment.

The IMEX Group intends to extend its green track record next year when IMEX America opens on October 11 in Las Vegas. The company recently appointed MeetGreen as Official Sustainability Partners for the new show.