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VANCOUVER - July 17, 2018: Adam Laker, the newly appointed general manager of Fairmont Hotel Vancouver, has moved up in the world - to the northern hemisphere for the first time in his career. Born in the UK, he moved as a teen with his family to Australia and has worked in swoon worthy destinations for the past 25 years. 


"My family and I are really closet Canucks," he explains. "We've had a home in Whistler for several years and holidayed there every chance we could. We love the outdoors - skiing, snowboarding, hiking, camping, hockey, fishing and biking - and delighted to be in Canada full time and able to explore the nature at our door step."

Laker arrives just in time to start plans for hotel's 80th anniversary in 2019. He will also oversee the Fairmont Gold floor renovations - the last of the $55+ million makeover at the "castle in the city" that is restoring the hotel to a new era of luxury.

Laker knows the hospitality business from the ground up. While studying at university for his Bachelor of Business, he started in the stewarding department of a hotel and mopped floors. With degree in hand, he worked his way up the ladder, starting in food and beverage and then held several progressive positions with hotel companies in Australia.

In 2003, Laker became general manager of the Stamford Grand Hotel in Adelaide and oversaw a hotel refurbishment which took the hotel to a five star rating. Two years later he joined Sofitel Gold Coast and in 2006 became general manager of Sofitel Reef Casino in Cairns, Australia. Following the devastation of the tsunami, Laker moved to Thailand and was responsible for the construction and opening of the beachside J.W. Marriott Resort & Spa Khao Lak.

In 2010, he rejoined ACCOR as general manager of Sofitel Fiji Resort & Spa in the Fiji Islands and was transferred to Sofitel Philippine Plaza Manila, Philippines as general manager before being appointed to ACCOR area general manager for the Philippines.

With his Aussie background, barbecuing has become part of his DNA and Laker and his wife (who is a chef), are looking forward to setting up the grill, getting a dog for their three sons, and discovering more trails and campsites of British Columbia.

 
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PLAINFIELD, IL, JULY 10, 2018 -- When was the last time your hotel's bathrooms were renovated? If its been longer than ten years, you’re probably losing money with every flush, every shower and every turn of the faucet. 

"While you can’t control your hotel guests' use of utilities, you can control its operating costs," said Sam Cicero, Jr., president of Cicero's Development Corp., a General Contractor specializing in the renovation of hospitality properties. "Through simple, environmentally friendly renovations to plumbing and electric, your hotel can significantly lower expensive water and electric bills."

Cicero's Development makes energy efficiency part of every hotel bathroom renovation. Along with replacing worn cabinetry, updating ugly tiles and swapping out old-fashioned tubs for walk-in showers, Cicero's will install new fixtures and toilets that look great and meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's water efficiency recommendations.
 
How much money can a bathroom renovation save a hotel? Take the example of a 25-year-old, 100-room property with a 50% occupancy rate that has not had any updates to toilets, shower heads or sink aerators. 
 
Between two guests and the housekeeping staff, a guestroom toilet is flushed 15 times a day on average, using up to 52.5 gallons of water per day based on a pre-1994 3.5 gallon-per-flush toilet or 25 gallons with a newer 1.6 GPF toilet. Multiply that number by 365 days and by 50 rooms and that’s 958,100 gallons flushed away in a year.  However, if 0.8 gallon-per-flush toilets would be installed, the hotel's total would be reduced to as little as 219,000 gallons a year or approximately 75 percent less.
 
Head over to the shower which is run an average of 23 minutes a day by guests and housekeeping. For an older shower head that uses three gallons per minute that equates to 1,259,250 gallons a year. By changing to a one gallon-per-minute flow, the showers' total is reduced to 419,750 a year, preventing the pouring of profits down the drain. Cicero's often recommends hotels upgrade tubs to walk-in showers. Most people use about 30 gallons of water to fill a tub, according to industry estimates. However, they'll use only ten gallons of water for a ten minute shower — a 66 percent reduction.
 
Same goes for the hand sink. Two guests and housekeeping combine to run it an average of 12 minutes a day, consuming 474,500 gallons per year based on an out-of-date, 2.2 gallon-per-minute sink aerator. A new one gallon-per-minute aerator cuts usage by over 50 percent to 219,000 gallons in a year. 
 
Add it all up and three wise investments to each guest bathroom will save this hotel over 1.8 million gallons of water annually -- enough to fill three Olympic sized pools.

How much will this lower the hotel's water bill? Factoring an average water rate of $2 per 1,000 gallons used and a sewer rate that is 85 percent of a water bill, a hotelier can be looking at a savings of over $10,000 per year, which would offset the total cost of the updates in less than two years. Plus, this doesn’t include the additional thousands of dollars it takes to heat the 1.8 million gallons water in the shower or sink, or the water saved in lobby restrooms, kitchens/breakfast areas, and laundry facilities if upgrades were extended there.

Finally, a renovated and stylish hotel with new technology will improve occupancy rates. Those who stay once are more likely to stay again. Excellent online reviews can draw in new guests.

 
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DALLAS (June 28, 2018) – OHR Whistler Management Ltd. (“OHRWM”), operator of The Westin Resort & Spa, Whistler, is pleased to announce an agreement with Aimbridge Hospitality, LLC (“Aimbridge”). Under that agreement, Aimbridge has invested in OHRWM, and effective immediately Evolution Hospitality, a subsidiary of Aimbridge, will work closely with O’Neill Hotels & Resorts, Ltd. (“OHR”) to actively lead the day-to-day operation of the Resort.

Aimbridge Hospitality is North America’s largest independent hotel management company, currently operating more than 800 hotels and resorts, with nearly 400 properties under various Marriott flags. Evolution Hospitality, which specializes in full-service, lifestyle and condo-hotel operations, will provide expertise and resources that will bring incremental value to the property’s operations. 

“We look forward to Aimbridge Hospitality and Evolution Hospitality bringing their focus and expertise to The Westin Whistler,” said John O’Neill, President and CEO at OHR. “This partnership will be instrumental in continuing the resort’s upward trend and delivering a world-class guest experience to maximize bottom-line performance for the benefit of the 419 home owners of this property.” 

The Westin Resort & Spa, Whistler, located at the base of Whistler Mountain, offers travelers an unmatched destination with more than 400 residentially-styled suites, boasting features like warming fireplaces, spacious tubs, modern kitchens and stunning mountain views. The Westin Whistler is the only luxury all-suite resort and destination spa in Whistler.   This award-winning hotel has twice been named the #1 Ski Resort by Condé Nast Traveler, plus was the host resort for downhill events during the 2010 Winter Olympics.

The luxury resort features Avello Spa & Health Club, plus three dining options. Grill & Vine, the resort’s upscale signature restaurant, offers guests vibrant, regionally-inspired cuisine. FireRock Lounge offers cocktails and tapas, and Grab & Go Café provides guests a selection of sandwiches, snacks and coffee. An ideal setting for meetings and events, The Westin Whistler features 14 meeting rooms and a scenic outdoor plaza totaling more than 20,000 square feet of creative event space. 

“We are proud to partner with OHR Whistler Management and O’Neill Hotels & Resort,” said Dave Johnson, Chairman and CEO at Aimbridge Hospitality. “We are honored to add this iconic resort to our management portfolio and look forward to the positive results this partnership will produce. As our first property in Canada, we view this as a bridge to many more exciting opportunities in the Canadian market.”

The Westin Whistler Resort & Spa is located at 4090 Whistler Way, Whistler, British Columbia. For more information, visit the website. For photos, click here

 

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