Tuesday, 12 May 2020


Peter Greenberg: Internationally renowned travel consultant and Emmy award winning investigative journalist is an author, produces “The Travel Detective Show” and “Eye on Travel” as well as being a regular contributor to CBS and PBS. (Check him out thru the internet.)

Peter provided a great update regarding travel and tourism with his very recent webinar presentation to Skål. Skål International was started in 1934 and is an international hospitality organization to which I belong.    

I have focused on the highlights of his talk and categorized each sector. First, the ‘Bad News’ followed by his ‘Good News’ section. He did say a lot more than I can cover in this update.

Mr. Greenberg made this interesting observation: 

Everything shut down almost instantly – Everything will reopen carefully and slowly. 

People/consumers will come back but with an abundance of fear and caution. 

Hotels and Motels

Bad News: The guest wants a guarantee that he or she will be safe. This will mean the likelihood of reduced capacity from the point that rooms will have to be left vacant for a day before the cleaning person goes in.

They will also want reassurances that the staff is healthy to ensure the safety of guests. And like airlines, the loyalty programs will be more heavily promoted to get the guests to return. (Good for the public. Mixed blessing for the hotelier.)

Good News: Room Rates will not be set in the same way they were before COVID-19. People will not buy on price. Rather, they will buy on trust. In other words, guests will be prepared to pay more for the reassurance that the property is SANITIZED and SAFE.

The large flagship hotels have all set up and are promoting new cleaning protocols. Hilton has announced a “Clean Stay” program in partnership with Lysol and the Mayo Clinic. Marriott has initiated the Global Cleanliness Council. Wyndham says “Count on Us”. Choice has “Commitment to Clean”. The other flags will or already have done the same. All hotels are being super careful and super clean!!

This is Critical!
Every hotel owner should have this information on their website and on-line booking agencies.

Perhaps the best news for those of us in rural towns and the prairies? Road travel will pick up, especially within a 300-mile radius of a destination. This is a relatively easy 6-7 hour one day drive.

Family trips or just “Let’s get away for a couple of days” vacations will be popular. And, because these cleaning protocols will be much more trusted with hotels and motels, there will be an uptick in reservations that might have gone to AirBnB. Owners of properties booked through AirBnB and similar rental agencies may not necessarily follow cleaning protocols and will not be generally trusted as much at this time. 

Finally, travellers in the US and Canada will vacation within country due to concerns about getting out of the country and then not being allowed back in if showing symptoms of COVID-19.

If returning travelers still face 14 day quarantine requirements, that will also influence international travel restrictions.

Restaurants and Pubs

Bad News: The restructuring of seating will be dramatically changed due to spacing.  Greenberg suggests mid-range dining establishments will be severely affected as tables will be significantly spread out.

2x2  / 2x2 / 2x2 seating will be out. Large rectangles for 4 and circular tables for 6 to ensure enough social distancing. Because of this reduced capacity it follows that revenue will be reduced substantially. The cost of meals could rise by as much as 30-40%.

Of special note, Greenburg forecast that restrooms, which are often close to the kitchen, will no longer be allowed to be there. He suggests bathrooms will be near the entry enabling guests to wash their hands upon entering the restaurants. Buffets will be out!

Good News: Many people, particularly millennials, love to dine out and gather for wine and cheese, beer tasting, tapas and similar events. They enjoy various drinks while in social settings watching sports on TV, live music entertainment or just to visit.

Peter suggests guests will come back in droves and fast food outlets and the high-end dining establishments will survive and move forward.

However, marketing has to change from the kinds of promotions that the industry was known for. Creative content will focus on “discover how sanitized we are” messaging to the public.

Overall the focus will be on, “What are you doing to keep my friends, loved ones and me safe?”


Bad News: Travel is down 95%. Thousands of planes are parked and many won’t be brought  back into service.

A number of LCC’s (low cost carriers) may well go out of business. The greatest concern of travellers is knowing whether they may have problems getting home.

Good News: To bring consumers back, the airlines will actively open up their frequent flyer loyalty programs. In recent years they have upped the number of miles for points redemption because their planes were operating near full capacity (98%).

Because of customer anxiety, lowering the qualifying points to fly will lure passengers into the air again. Greenburg noted there are 23 Trillion unredeemed air miles in their various forms.

Flights will be cheap. A recent flight from Fort Lauderdale – LA return flight? $38 bucks with only 8 people onboard! 
Wrapping it Up

  1. Travel Insurance will undergo a major clarification. Apparently quite a few “cancellation” insurance policies did not cover pandemics. It was in the fine print on page 5! Who reads that?

  1. The public will demand much more clarity and transparency.

  1. Deposit money in escrow. Booking agencies and/or airline and/or cruise lines will not be allowed to require deposits that they can spend until they deliver the service. Our travel money will be much more secure. 

Under the heading, Tim’s Hotel-Motel News Bits on my website, I provide these Blog News Pieces on a periodic basis to provide relevant, useful and interesting information to the Hotel-Motel Hospitality industry.

Contact Info
Tim Anderson – Hotel and Motel Specialist & Hotel Co-Owner
Licensed Real Estate Associate – Royal LePage Commercial
403-862-4179  Email: timjn_anderson@yahoo.ca

 Website:           www.andersoncommercialrealty.com

Posted by Tim Anderson
Calgary Hotel Sales, Banff Hotel Sales, Canmore hospitality sales, hospitality, hotel listings, hotel sales, motel listings, motel sales, Tim Anderson Commercial Real Rstate / andersoncommercialrealty.com

Sunday, 29 March 2020

Tims Hotel-Motel News Bits

We are living in difficult times that seriously impact our industry and I am not one to make light of a pandemic or any severe health or economic crisis. However, if you are like me, you still want to read, see or hear some optimistic news on the topic. So, lets start with these comments as we head further into the uncertain future.

The first is a timely analogy from history which is non-disease related but would havebeen just as concerning and fear causing, probably moreso than our current COVID-19 fear and the second is a very short but encouraging reminder from aexperienced hotelier.

1. Historical Analogy: The book The Splendid and The Vile is a recent publicationby a terrific author (*see note) and it deals with what must have beenno what was an unbelievably discouraging time in the very early stages of WW2. The period is June 1940 tJune 1941 which is before the US entered the war. The French who had the strongest army in Europe were teetering on and then did collapse. The English under the newly elected Prime Minister Winston Churchill were supporting the French with whom they had a mutual protection pact. Already that had not been working out well as you may recall or know from the recent movie Dunkirk

Churchill had expected the French to withstand the Germans and both France and England desperately wanted US support. The US electorate were essentially isolationists i.e. let Europe sort itself out  we Americans dont want to be involved. Roosevelt had not decided if he wished to run for an unprecedented third term and was both fully aware of and wary of his country’s citizens anti-involvement desires.

So  to the analogy!
1. Youre Churchill
2. The French have just capitulated to the Germans.
3. The Americans cant be counted on for anything
4. The Germans with their superior troops and technology can set up across the channel for bombing and an invasion. (Only 21 miles or 33 km)
5. You can expect Panzer tanks crashing through Trafalgar Square.
6. You have images of paratroopers landing in your garden.

When one thinks about it  the possibilities are phenomenally disastrous.
No off work self-isolationno quarantine 14 days or more, nhealth test check,
not just yourself to worry about ---- BUT the entire country. Can you imagine the anxiety and fear?

And how did it ultimately work out? Germany was defeated and England and the Allies were victorious. But in the summer of 1940, there was only a blank wall withunbelievable odds and a lot of rampant fear. By comparison the current pandemic issueas serious and frightening as it is and can/will be in the near future its nowhere near the seriousness and frightening as what England was about to go through in 1940.

2. So, to put this in perspective, herethe this too will pass so be careful but not too fearful comment by a hotelier friend to whom Ive sold several properties one of which is in the Rocky Mountains. He has seen his share of crises and heres what hsent me: 

We have experienced and survived (i) SARS, (ii) Swine Flu (H1N1), (iii) Mad Cow Disease, (iv) Y2K (planes falling out of the sky, internet crashing) (vForest Fires, (vithe 2008 US and World Economic Crisis, (vii9/11 and expected terrorism(viiiavalanches (at his mountain hotel) (ix) pipeline disputes and (x) even often upsetting elections
So, of course, we will get through this covid-19 as well.

Final thought. The 1918 Spanish Flu epidemic which hithrough the end of WW1 was followed by what?The Roaring Twenties. I full expect us to have a Roaring Twenties as we recover from this pandemic AND I don’t expect that it will be followed by a 1930s style depression.

So please be careful and use all of the safety measures with your loved ones, your guests and customers and of course yourself. Until the next time.

Tim Anderson 403-862-4179
Member SKÅL - International Hospitality Organization 
Founder/Member  Hotel Exchange Group
Select Specialists  Over $350,000,000 in Hotel Sales
Hotel Co-Owner (minor)

*Author Eric Larsen, the authordoes tremendous research and has a terrificengaging cant put this book down writing style. His books include: Dead Wake about the sinking of the Lusitania, In the Garden of Beasts about Hitlers Germany from 1933-37 thru the eyes of the US Ambassador at the time, among othersall very compelling reads.

Posted by Tim Anderson
Labels: Calgary Hotel Sales, Banff Hotel Sales, Canmore hospitality sales, hospitality, hotel listings, hotel sales, motel listings, motel sales, Tim Anderson Commercial Real Rstate / anderson commercial realty.com

Wednesday, 29 January 2020

Negative Financial Impacts on your guests that you will want to Avoid as Hotel and Motel owners.

Hotel and Motel owners – here’s something to watch out for with your clientele. There are two instances to which I am referring but if space and time permitted, I could add a few more, less egregious ones. 

Recently I was in Washington DC and stayed at a stately, well known, top flag hotel for a conference. Beautiful hotel – wonderful stay and fascinating city. Upon check out I asked to see the paper receipt. I don’t know about you, but I rarely inspect my emailed receipts, so I always like to check the receipts “on the spot” to check for any errors. We were there for a full week and used taxi’s and “shanks pony” (that’s a euphemism for walking on foot) to get around. We never rented a car.

Check your bill!

When I checked the bill there were two valet charges for a total of $124 plus tax in US funds. Huh – this was an 11% overcharge and I never had a rental car and never used a valet. The very professional front desk lady apologised and immediately corrected the error.  However, if I had not checked and simply let the charge to go thru, I might never have discovered it. And if I did discover it how much more trouble would that have been to correct the error from Calgary in communicating to Washington DC.

At this same hotel chain at a Caribbean resort one of my best friends attended a wedding and experienced a full 2-day extra charge. He had to prove the overcharge be securing his Credit Card statement on his return to Canada. He claims he will never use that hotel chain again.

Further, if these bills were simply going to a corporation, would the accounting department paying the bill even have an inkling that there was a mistaken overcharge.

3    Currency Issue!

2.     Secondarily there was a currency issue. The hotel billed the wrong, higher amount and then immediately refunded that full wrong higher amount all in US dollars. They then charged the lower correct amount. HOWEVER, the Sell/Buy of US to CAD funds left me with a further charge of $94 CAD for a $1700 CAD  charge. 

Visa blamed it on the hotel, but that was ridiculous because the hotel refunded the exact same amount of US funds as they incorrectly charged in the first place. This problem arises because all of these calculations are done by machine algorithms. My bank at their own discretion ultimately refunded this amount.

Send an apology!

     Finally, make sure that you send out an apology after the error is corrected unless it’s very minor. The travelling public relies on trust and confidence in the supplier of the service along with a follow-up of confirmation of the correction of the mistake and a genuine apology.

So, dear reader, if you are in the hospitality industry, make sure that your staff are very aware of checking for mistakes that could hamper trust and future business.

                                Until the next periodic Blog – Tim Anderson – Hotel Broker
                                                                     January 2020 ----403-862-4179

Click on the title below for a quick look at the hotel/motel market as it is now appearing.

Current Realities Impacting Hotel and Motel Transactions in Fall 2019

Wednesday, 18 December 2019

Current Realities Impacting Hotel and Motel Transactions in Fall 2019

Canmore, Banff, Jasper and other holiday destinations have done as well as ever this year. Read about The Malcolm, the brand new luxury hotel in Canmore after this quick update on the Other Side of This Challenging Hotel Market.

I have just brokered a transaction in Saskatchewan for a $12 million property that sold for $4.175 million.

Why? The relatively new property located in a decent sized smaller town was hit by the oil and gas downturn with the subsequent reduced occupancy and rack rate all of which of course dramatically reduced the ADR and RevPAR. In short, the capitalized value was savaged.

Recent Hotel Sales
My associate and I transacted a total of 5 hotels and motels in 2019 which is a marked increase over 2018.

One was sold for a planned change of use but will still operate as a smaller town motel until the new owner is able to get his project in place. One was an operating property under receivership but it still captured a value close to what the owner wanted. Most encouraging, one was purchased on the basis as noted below. It made sense to the buyer and the seller was prepared to meet the market as it now exists.

This speaks to what seems to be the new attitude of purchasers and owners which recognizes economic realities.
Purchasers – “If this is the new normal, I am going to seek out opportunities that make sense in this economy and I am going to run a successful hotel or motel.”
Owners – “If this is the new normal, I am prepared to set my price at today’s value to secure a successful sale of my property.”
On the other side of the market, here’s an encouraging report from spending an evening with the Rockies SKAL club and then overnighting at the New Malcolm Hotel in Canmore, Alberta.