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Remember your first hotel tour?

A big thank you to the managers on duty and property ambassadors: Touring lodging properties with hospitality management students is one of the joys of being an educator in our profession. I never tire of accompanying our students, seeing their discovery of the behind-the-scenes or the oohs and ahhs at new designs. Nor do I tire of seeing new or renovated properties, or of the enthusiasm of tour guides in the venerable and iconic flagships.

During the recent Hotel Xperience in New York City, dozens of colleges rewarded some of their best or most senior students with a trip to New York. These tour requests can be taxing for managers in the peak of the season. Faculty lean on their alumni or former colleagues to come to work on days off, and they in turn enlist their colleagues in being guides, while juggling full occupancies and the demands of clients and guests, all to share the wonder of the properties in which they work. 

When tours are given with heart and enthusiasm, they are like the memories we make for guests – they last a long while. And when they seem like an imposition or interruption, it can be deflating. If you are a young manager who thinks you got “stuck” giving that student group a tour, or if you are successful senior leader who really doesn’t have the time, please think back to one special tour that inspired you.

“Another Day Another Tour with a Penn State Alum! Thank You Thank You Daniel Brauer and Abigail Gray for introducing us to The St. Regis New York!!! I am without words for how jaw dropping this property is. Truly a hotel to remember!” Abbe Strauss (with permission).
“Another Day Another Tour with a Penn State Alum! Thank You Thank You Daniel Brauer and Abigail Gray for introducing us to The St. Regis New York!!! I am without words for how jaw dropping this property is. Truly a hotel to remember!” Abbe Strauss (with permission).

Not just during field trips but in university towns throughout academic calendars, local hoteliers, restaurateurs and venue managers open their doors and take time to show their places of business to students interested in our profession (and to their teachers still eager to learn and connect with what is new in the marketplace). I want to say thank you, on behalf of all of us, students and faculty alike, for showing us the back of the house, the front of the house, for “walking the walk” and for modeling the way.

A great student hotel tour can inspire a career, create a new and future guest, and well, even energize and or reconnect you to the joys of your hotel and the hotelier’s life. Again, thank you all.

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