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  • New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

    Hello all,

    I'm new to hotel management, being fresh out of serving two years in the Air Force, and I thought I'd search out the forums for the wants of the vacationers I now serve.

    I gave another Disney forum a chance to give me their list, and now I want to give all of you a chance.

    I guess the caveat being:

    What do you want from a value-minded hotel experience that isn't within realistic walking distance to Disneyland?

    Location, location, location, or complimentary shuttle system (i.e. not the Anaheim Resort Transit system!) seems to be the resounding cry from the other posters, along with an overall quality. For various reasons, those are HUGE hurdles I'm still trying overcome

    From the previous posters I did a die hard search for how to make a shuttle a possibility . . . but it seems ART has too strong of a political sway in the area. But I did implement hot chocolate!

    And for reference of what we already offer, you can search out the hotel website by googling "Comfort Inn Maingate" I figure it'll be more effective for you to see what we already offer so that you don't recommend something to me that we already do.

    Anyway, you all have my "mickey" ears. Thanks in advance!
    Last edited by jeffersonKim; 11-19-2007, 07:33 PM.

  • #2
    Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

    You won't get away from ART, your hotel is in the Resort Area and you are not grandfathered, such as the Anaheim Sheraton or the Candy Cane Inn. If they want a new building permit for their property, they would have to drop their own shuttle and join ART.

    ART is one way the city gets Air Quality credits for reducing emissions, and there is no way to not be part of ART once you are in the designated area.

    Things that I have read in positive comments about hotels in the area.

    Landscaping/feel of the property, I know you are in the "value" category, but maybe go check out what HoJo's or CCI grounds are like.

    When you drive up/dropped off by a taxi or the Airport Bus, you get a first impression.

    Other things are good clean rooms, and that everything works. A decent TV, beds in good quality and some good sheets and towels, also access to the Internet is getting more and more popular, and some folks won't book without it.

    Staffing is another consideration, your front desk personnel also sets a "first impression", and if it doesn't go well, then folks will start off on the wrong foot.

    It is a common complaint when you read the Disney owned hotels.

    And of course, the "value" of what you got, when people pay more, they expect more.

    So offer nice, basic accomodations that are clean and that the property looks good are the best things, based on MHO and what I have read on this board and others.

    Good luck on making the improvements
    Check out my Theme Park Photos at http://darkbeer.smugmug.com

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

      How about an AP Discount
      DISNEYLAND GUY

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      • #4
        Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

        Comfortable beds w/ down comforters and down pillows, GOOD waterpressure and air filtration system and I'd consider staying somewhere other than ON property.
        Just countin' the days til the next visit!

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

          Originally posted by All4dISNEY View Post
          Comfortable beds w/ down comforters and down pillows, GOOD water pressure and air filtration system and I'd consider staying somewhere other than ON property.
          Why not make down comforters/down pillows AVAILABLE?? I know my husband can't sleep on down pillows, so maybe have both down/fiberfill available??

          I agree with another poster about how the OUTSIDE of the hotel looks. You don't have to go all out, but make it respectable and keep it up well.

          Get employees that are willing to go the extra mile for your guests within your rules (kinda like how we are given the opportunity to handle situations with guests at the park itself!).

          If you MUST have the ART shuttle for your guests to go to the resort, ok, but what about a shuttle service for your guests to go other places(the Block, etc). Before someone comes and chews me out, I'm not sure if the ART goes to the Block or to South Coast Plaza, or whatever.

          The big thing that would make me come back-- KEEP IT CLEAN and WELL MAINTAINED!!!!!!!! That's a biggie in my book. I don't care if maybe my tv is 21" instead of 26" if it works all the time, and I get a good variety of channels. Make sure the rooms are cleaned well and that all the plumbing, heating and cooling works well.

          Maybe 24 hour coffee pot with that hot chocolate??? Not sure if you offer the single cup coffeemakers in your rooms, but that's always a good idea.

          DEFINATELY offer internet services. It can't cost that much for wifi to run thru the hotel and it's good for your guests, or get DSL. Consider also a "business center" of some sort that will allow your guests to get online and print boarding passes for their flights, etc.

          I got nothing else right now, but I did want to say THANK YOU for serving in the military. I did my time thru Desert Shield/Storm, but in the Army.. :thumbup:

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

            I have checked a few places, including the website of the hotel that is run by the manager who made the first post.

            http://www.comfortinnmaingate.com/

            I have driven by the location MANY times, but never stepped in, but from the videos online, looks like the landscaping is maintained well.

            They do offer a free breakfast and free Internet access (pretty sure it is WiFi).

            They just did some resurfacing work to the pool area.

            Lots of TV channels (and as mentioned above, while you are soon or later going to need to get Digital TV's, or the converter boxes ("Standard" TV ends in February of 2009), you don't need the biggest size, or the most up to date, but it needs to work properly and the channels come in clearly (I have had more than one hotel with poor reception, I think due to the cable hookup in the hotel). I have seen more than one complaint about the "Disney Parks" channels at the three Disney owned hotels and how poorly they come in.

            And I hope the OP doesn't mind...


            Thanks for checking us out! These savings are the best you'll find anywhere else because you're buying direct. By skipping the middle-man, we pass the savings to you!

            20% off! Valid for stays from Now - December 20th

            Call or email us directly and mention the code WINTER SPECIAL to get 20% off the standard room rate for stays from now - December 20th, 2007. This deal cannot be combined with any other offer/coupon.

            10% off! Valid for stays from January 6th, 2008 and on!

            Select "Int. User" as your "Program" in the top left "Fast Reservations" to get these special rates.

            Or call or email us directly and mention the code SHOW ME THE MICKEY to get 10% off the standard room rate for stays from January 6, 2008 and on. This deal cannot be combined with any other offer/coupon.
            So it looks like they are trying to make it a good place to stay, and care about their guests.

            There also have been positive reviews since the OP has taken over at TripAdvisor.
            Check out my Theme Park Photos at http://darkbeer.smugmug.com

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

              Since it is off topic, figured I would but the info about the ending of "Standard" TV in a new post... (And I should say "Standard Analog", as there is a "Standard Digital" that is part of the new type of TV signals...)

              http://www.dtv.gov/
              Check out my Theme Park Photos at http://darkbeer.smugmug.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                Originally posted by pattimelt View Post
                If you MUST have the ART shuttle for your guests to go to the resort, ok, but what about a shuttle service for your guests to go other places(the Block, etc). Before someone comes and chews me out, I'm not sure if the ART goes to the Block or to South Coast Plaza, or whatever.
                ART services the Block every hour (I think), South Coast Plaza has their own bus system that stops at some of the major hotels for pretty cheap.
                Burnt Toast
                The Magic Begins With Me...! 8:P

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                  Originally posted by Darkbeer View Post
                  You won't get away from ART, your hotel is in the Resort Area and you are not grandfathered, such as the Anaheim Sheraton or the Candy Cane Inn. If they want a new building permit for their property, they would have to drop their own shuttle and join ART.

                  ART is one way the city gets Air Quality credits for reducing emissions, and there is no way to not be part of ART once you are in the designated area.
                  I should have asked here before going on a wild goose hunt with the City of Anaheim!!!

                  Yesterday, the ART system was an hour late on two occassions!!! One of our guests ended up missing the parade because of it and it ended up looking bad on us

                  Most of our guests at our hotel actually drive and park instead of using ART.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                    Originally posted by Darkbeer View Post

                    They do offer a free breakfast and free Internet access (pretty sure it is WiFi).
                    Yeah, it's WiFi.


                    Originally posted by Darkbeer View Post

                    Lots of TV channels (and as mentioned above, while you are soon or later going to need to get Digital TV's, or the converter boxes ("Standard" TV ends in February of 2009), you don't need the biggest size, or the most up to date, but it needs to work properly and the channels come in clearly (I have had more than one hotel with poor reception, I think due to the cable hookup in the hotel). I have seen more than one complaint about the "Disney Parks" channels at the three Disney owned hotels and how poorly they come in.
                    As a Choice hotel franchise, LCD monitors will soon be a requirement within the next couple of years.

                    Also, we're currently using Time Warner Cable, so I'm assuming that'll make transition easy if we're not already going through some kind of digital-analog conversion.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                      Free parking would be great. I always feel that I'm being penalized for driving myself when a hotel charges me for parking my auto.
                      I may have to grow older, but I refuse to Grow UP!

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                        Clean rooms that don't smell like smoke is #1 to me. Followed by comfy bed and good TV.
                        MiceChat 101: Be NICE! If you don't play well with others, you are in the wrong sandbox.

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                        • #13
                          Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                          Comfortable mattresses are most important. It is the the one thing that almost every reasonably priced hotel near DL lacks.
                          Clean rooms and a friendly staff are also very important.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                            Originally posted by raevnzno View Post
                            Free parking would be great. I always feel that I'm being penalized for driving myself when a hotel charges me for parking my auto.
                            Yeah, we got free parking

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                              Originally posted by Dustysage View Post
                              Clean rooms that don't smell like smoke is #1 to me. Followed by comfy bed and good TV.
                              Do they actually have smoking rooms close to Disneyland? We're completely 100% smoke free and I figured everyone has gone that route.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                                Originally posted by Goin2DL View Post
                                Comfortable mattresses are most important. It is the the one thing that almost every reasonably priced hotel near DL lacks.
                                Clean rooms and a friendly staff are also very important.
                                We have pillow top mattresses we just installed a couple months ago, but I can totally understand what you mean. . .

                                The moderate hotels around DL won't change out their mattresses until absolutely necessary because they can't afford to like those higher chains.

                                Personally, I sleep on a Cheapur-pedic (like a tempur-pedic but home made ), and it's hard for me to comfortably sleep on ANY mattress because I'm so used to my home made one.

                                I would switch out all mattresses with the foam type, but the problem with that is that foam isn't very conducive to all the wear and tear.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                                  My husband told me you posted here!

                                  I have the honor of being one of the recent guests at your hotel. My mother, aunt, son and I were staying in 104 around Thanksgiving! Everything was wonderful. The beds and pillows were comfortable, the water strong and hot, the heat/ac fine-tuned to frosty or sweltering, depending on where we dialed in, and the channels clear. Breakfast was great. The staff (day and night) were very polite and quick with anything we needed more of. I can understand why some people would think that the shuttle delay was your hotel's fault, but having been a frequent sleeper at the Motel 6 down the street, I know it's not about the hotels, it's about the transports. My mother booked through a travel agency and got a cheaper per-person/per-day rate than my trio gets booking at Motel 6, I think.

                                  My suggestions (if they're workable) would be to offer free or discounted shuttle passes for the amount of people/day, having the pool open past park hours with a notation that members CAN be asked to vacate the area if they're being too loud, and more waffle batter & juice towards the end of the breakfast run. Oh, and do you have firmer pillows/extra blankets available?
                                  • +Since you can't run your own shuttle (sucks, I know) maybe you could make a deal like a free one-day shuttle pass per person on ART for those staying two days, a free three-day for those staying three or more. If they don't want the passes, they don't have to take them, but any time you say "stay here and get _____ FREE!" people are going to take a second look at your location. In the case of my recent visit, we had three people that took the shuttle one day on a six(?) day stay. We would have used the shuttle more, since my mother is not in the best health and rarely makes it to the park till after six, while my son, my aunt and myself were generally eager to get up and go.
                                  • +Having the pool & hot tub open after Disneyland has closed would be a godsend for sore feet and aching muscles. I was excited to hear that your pool is heated in the colder months, but I never got a chance to use it because we tended to stick around the park till closing. Believe me, by the time we got back to the room, I would have liked nothing more than to take a few slow laps through the pool or soak in the hot tub.
                                  • +Several times, we'd get to the breakfast room just as it was nearing the last hour or two and find that the apple & orange juice were set to "refill" and the waffle batter (LOVE that waffle maker!) had to be requested, as the tray was empty. I know the staff is eager to set things to right for the next morning, but the second to the last day I was there, the breakfast room was packed and I had to request that the lady behind the counter bring up a couple of waffle batter cups. I saw more people coming to make waffles line up behind me, but the batter was used up again. Oh, and do you have a choice of fruit for your deliveries? I heard a few guests wishing there were bananas available.

                                  Other than that, the place is definitely worth the visit and I'm hoping to be staying there again!

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                                    I love that you put in hot chocolate. It always bothers me that hotels have coffee pots and coffee packets - but, what about those of us that want a hot drink and can't stand coffee!! I mean, the hot water's there, why not just add a hot chocolate packet. That's awesome.
                                    sigpic
                                    Will trade husband for Disneyland and DCA Pins!

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                                    • #19
                                      Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                                      Originally posted by BFJen View Post
                                      I love that you put in hot chocolate. It always bothers me that hotels have coffee pots and coffee packets - but, what about those of us that want a hot drink and can't stand coffee!! I mean, the hot water's there, why not just add a hot chocolate packet. That's awesome.
                                      Actually the hot chocolate idea came from DISBoards when I asked for their opinions I'm glad you liked it.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Re: New Hotel Manager Seeks Advice

                                        Originally posted by Strangel View Post
                                        • +Several times, we'd get to the breakfast room just as it was nearing the last hour or two and find that the apple & orange juice were set to "refill" and the waffle batter (LOVE that waffle maker!) had to be requested, as the tray was empty. I know the staff is eager to set things to right for the next morning, but the second to the last day I was there, the breakfast room was packed and I had to request that the lady behind the counter bring up a couple of waffle batter cups. I saw more people coming to make waffles line up behind me, but the batter was used up again. Oh, and do you have a choice of fruit for your deliveries? I heard a few guests wishing there were bananas available.
                                        Other than that, the place is definitely worth the visit and I'm hoping to be staying there again!
                                        I'm glad you found me Would you be able to PM me your stay and your last name?

                                        I want to know what day you stayed so I can figure out why there were issues with the breakfast attendant.

                                        I'm not usually there that early in the morning, so I can't always oversee the quality control during that time.

                                        Comment

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