Staten Island

M&R Hotel Management Names Holiday Inn Staten Island Manager

Edward Malone, General Manager of the 105-room Holiday Inn Staten IslandM&R Hotel Management today announced the appointment of Edward Malone as general manager of its 105-room, full-service Holiday Inn Staten Island.

Malone, a 27-year hospitality industry veteran who has served hotels in Virginia, New Jersey and Pennsylvania, will oversee all aspects of the hotel’s operations, including sales, marketing, security, maintenance, housekeeping and accounting.

Prior to joining M&R Hotel Management, Malone was interim general manager of the Regency Inn in Richmond, Virginia. He was assistant general manager of the Quality Inn in East Windsor, New Jersey, from 2013 to 2014. From 2006 to 2010, he served Wyndham Hotel Group in Parsippany, New Jersey, as manager of franchise services and manager of operations and support.

Earlier in his career, Malone was general manager of the Hawthorn Suites by Wyndham in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and general manager of Howard Johnson hotels in Allentown and Phillipsburg, New Jersey. He began his hospitality career as food and beverage manager of the Holiday Inn in Clinton, New Jersey.  Malone earned a bachelor’s degree in hotel management at East Stroudsburg University of Pennsylvania.

Holiday Inn Staten Island front desk and waiting area with couches

Holiday Inn Staten Island

“We believe Edward Malone’s extensive experience, both at the property level and the corporate level and particularly in the franchise area, will make him a valuable addition to our team,” said Brian M. McSherry, M&R Hotel Management chief operating officer.

The Holiday Inn Staten Island at 290 Wild Ave. in the Travis section of Staten Island features a mix of king and double-queen guest rooms, 24-hour, grab-and-go market, 450 square feet of function space, 24-hour business and fitness centers, multilingual staff, guest laundry, complimentary Wi-Fi throughout the building and Lillies Restaurant & Bar, which serves breakfast and dinner.

guest room at the Holiday Inn Staten Island

Holiday Inn Staten Island

The hotel is adjacent to the 95-room Holiday Inn Express Staten Island West and 93-room Comfort Inn, also managed by M&R Hotel Management. All three are preferred hotels of the Staten Island Yankees baseball team, the Single A-short season affiliate of the New York Yankees.

M&R Hotel Management also operates three hotels in Manhattan, six in Queens, one in the Boston suburb of Braintree, Massachusetts, and one on the Caribbean island of St. Maarten. Its fourth Manhattan hotel, the Holiday Inn New York –Times Square South, is scheduled to open later this year.

InterContinental Hotels Group is the parent company of Holiday Inn. M&R Hotel Management’s portfolio also includes hotels under the brands of Choice Hotels International, Wyndham Hotel Group and Best Western International. In addition, M&R Hotel Management has been certified to manage brands of Marriott International, Hilton Worldwide, Hyatt Hotels Corp. and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide.

Based in Great Neck, M&R Hotel Management provides consulting services in hotel site and contractor selection, feasibility analysis, permitting, financing, franchising, human resources support, sales and marketing, revenue management, food and beverage management, risk management audits, e-commerce, design, procurement, accounting audits and engineering in addition to on-site management.

2015 Looks Like Another Good Year for Hotels

confetti flying through the air on New Years Eve 2015 at Times Square

Image: @timessquarenyc via Instagram

Those of us who have worked in hospitality long enough know the business is cyclical due to market forces of supply and demand. Fortunately, we have enjoyed several strong years as the economy rebounded from recession, and we are looking forward to another year of healthy growth in occupancy and rates.

The midscale segment — where most of M&R Hotel Management’s hotels operate—performed well in 2014 and is expected to continue to perform strongly this year. PKF Hospitality Research says revenue per available room, or RevPAR ̶ an indicator of profitability ̶ jumped 7.8 percent in 2014 and will grow another 5.5 percent in 2015.

Holiday Inn Staten Island front desk and waiting area with couches

Holiday Inn Staten Island

M&R has benefited from the up cycle as owners seek expert management for their new and existing hotels. We recently opened the newly constructed Holiday Inn Staten Island in our home market of New York and expanded into the Boston and Caribbean markets as operator of the Holiday Inn Express Braintree and Alegria Resort in St. Maarten.

Alegria Resort, St. Maarten guest bedroom

Alegria Resort St. Maarten

During the last 10 years, M&R Hotel Management has built a reputation for managing hotels efficiently, delivering excellent guest service and driving sales and revenue. While I’ll take an up cycle over a down cycle any day, I am confident our commitment to performance and quality and service will prevail in any economy.

M&R Hotel Management logo

Promoting Team Spirit on the Ballfield and Off

Yankees Staten Island logo

Baseball certainly ranks high among America’s favorite pastimes. That’s as true for the high-powered world of Major League Baseball as it is for the minor leagues, which are beloved by their hometown fans.

Staten Island, one of New York’s five boroughs, is home to the Staten Island Yankees, the Single A-short season affiliate of the World Champion New York Yankees and part of the venerable New York-Penn League, which celebrates its 75th anniversary this year.

Staten Islanders proudly support their home team, and so do we through a marketing partnership with three of our 10 hotels: the Holiday Inn Express Staten Island West, Comfort Inn and Holiday Inn Staten Island. The Holiday Inn Staten Island is scheduled to open this month.

As proud boosters of the Staten Island Yankees, our Holiday Inn Express Staten Island West, Holiday Inn Staten Island and Comfort Inn hotels each are designated the team’s “preferred” hotels.

Certainly, there are business advantages for entering into such a partnership: We get to display our logos and messages on the scoreboard at the Richmond County Bank Ballpark, where the team plays, Our ads appear in the team’s PlayBall magazine. And its beloved mascot, Holy Cow, might even show up at one of our hotels to sign autographs.

Beyond all that, we share the core values of teamwork, fair play and the pursuit of excellence. Our Staten Island hotels and the members of our team who operate them embody those values when serving our guests.

For Better or Worse, Guests Judge a Hotel by its Cover

With the arrival of summer, hotel managers again can focus on what’s known in the industry as “curb appeal:” the first impression guests make when they approach a hotel. A positive first opinion, coupled with welcoming service and a comfortable room, bodes well for a successful stay overall.

The challenge here is greater for older hotels. Buildings that appear out of style or suffer from worn exteriors aren’t likely to appeal to travelers of any age. This is especially true for millennials, with their preference for all things contemporary and stylish. Granted, little can be done about a building cursed by the forgettable architecture of the 50s or 60s.

M&R Hospitality Management is fortunate to operate hotels that either are new or of very recent vintage. “New” usually is good when it comes to aesthetics. But the curb appeal of even the newest hotel can benefit from enhanced landscaping, improved lighting and the addition of outdoor furniture, as space and place permit.

Travelers who research hotels and book stays online can be expected to scrutinize posted images, underscoring the importance of quality photography. It’s just as important for hotels to put their best photographic foot forward as it is for any other online retailer. Who is going to buy a shirt or hotel room online if it’s not available for visual inspection?

True road warriors – the ones who actually drive cars and work outside of the office – typically will seek a room in whatever community they reach at the end of the day. If they see two competing brands – both at the same price point – the appearance of the exterior definitely will play a role in deciding where they will stay for the night.

We continuously evaluate the exterior and interior appearance of our hotels and respond to guest comments on TripAdvisor regarding the perceived quality of our hotels, based on appearance. As a result of those efforts, three hotels operated by M&R Hotel Management currently are upgrading their curb appeal.

The Holiday Inn Express New York JFK Airport Area just finished expanding the porte cochere in front of the main entrance. General Manager Brent Hnatow said the protective outdoor roof gives the hotel more of a “sense of place.” It also serves a function, providing a shelter for guests waiting for the complimentary airport shuttle.

The Days Inn Jamaica-JFK Airport recently installed new outdoor furniture, creating what General Manager Faiza Nadeem describes as “an outdoor room.” Hotel guests already are enjoying this outdoor refuge, even though temperatures have been distinctly more spring-like than summer-like.

The Comfort Inn Midtown West on West 48th Street in Manhattan recently added more flowering plants. General Manager Juan Soto says the investment will be well spent. “Guests tell us that when they come back to the hotel, it’s like a touch of home in the middle of the city,” he said.

Hotel Management 2.0

At first glance, third-party management companies and their counterparts that both own and operate hotels appear to be cut from the same cloth. Scratch the surface, and you’ll discover profoundly different cultures that can make a difference when it comes to maximizing revenues – and profits.

Both are responsible for day-to-day operations including budgeting, planning, renovations, recruiting, human resources, revenue, distribution, food-and-beverage, meetings, sales and marketing, including public relations, social media and managing property websites.

But owner/operators like M&R Hotel Management bring something more to the table: the perspective of an investor whose money is at risk. We may have everything to gain by their decisions and actions, but we also have everything to lose.

Owner/managers are less encumbered by procedural hurdles such as formal capital expenditure proposals and approvals that can inhibit progress. For example, we can allocate funds immediately to make improvements that promise to boost ADR.

We made such a decision recently at one of our hotels at JFK International Airport. During an inspection, we noticed that the marble bathroom floors didn’t look pristine because they weren’t polished. So we decided on the spot to hire a contractor to polish them.

Within weeks, we received higher guest satisfaction scores. The greater the sense of urgency, the faster the improvements will be completed and the more guests will benefit. Happier guests mean higher guest satisfaction scores.

Similarly, we can make aggressive rate changes in response to rapidly changing market conditions without going through a formal proposal and waiting for approval. By acting quickly, we capture revenue gains faster.

Owner/operators can approach management of a hotel holistically, giving architectural, design and construction issues simultaneous and equal consideration with operations and marketing.

The bottom line for other owners is this: When evaluating the strength of a prospective management company, ask whether it ever owned hotels. When a management company has walked in an owner’s shoes, the more effective it can be.