Mahalo to everyone who helped HYPE (Hospitality's Young Professionals and Entrepreneurs) celebrate its first anniversary, especially to our sponsors International Market Place, Eating House 1849, MarketAdvantage, and Booking.com! We're looking forward to another successful year, and invite you all to join us!
This week I’d like to congratulate Stephanie Iona of Dow Agrosciences for being in the lead of our membership drive challenge with 2 referrals since February! I announced this initiative at our October GMM on Kauai as a means to spur our membership drive. Remember, if you refer 5 new HLTA members, you will be entered in a drawing to win a round-trip flight for two on any Alaska Airlines destination and a 3-night stay at a Marriott property. The member who recruits the most members will win a round-trip flight for two on any Island Air destination and a 2-night stay at an Aqua-Aston Property.
Mahalo to the members who have successfully referred one new member each:
The ending of April marks the “make it or break it” mile in the Hawaii state legislative session as bills are now going through conference committees. Most of our priority bills are still in their conference committees where deliberations are being made by both chambers in coming up with compromise language.
I would however like to report that late last week Senate Bills 686 and 683 were recommitted by the House in conference, thereby killing the measures for this session. These two bills addressed tacking a surcharge to residential investment properties as well as visitor accommodations for the purpose of funding public education. As much as we support public education given all that the industry does individually and collectively for the youth of our state, this was one of our association's priority measures as we are highly opposed to bills that further add tax levies on the visitor industry. As a recap, the proposed senate bills would have called for a constitutional amendment that would established a $3.00 a night surcharge on hotel rooms under $150, and a $5 a night surcharge on accommodations that are over $150. This is a very big victory for our industry but as this is the first session in the legislative biennium the bill will automatically carry over to the next session where we must stay vigilant shall it once again surface.
On the Honolulu City Council front we continue to push to oppose the mayor's proposed 50-cent (per $1,000) increase in the hotel and resort real property tax classification. Resolution 17-70 which addresses this increase is being heard on Wednesday April 26th by the City Council for public reading. If you need help in submitting testimony in opposition to this measure, please feel free to contact our Director of Government & Community Affairs, Jared Higashi, at email@example.com or at 923-0407.
Wednesday, April 19, 2017 marked the end of a 7-month mentorship program between Hawaii's top general managers and hospitality students from Brigham Young University-Hawaii, Hawaii Pacific University, and the University of Hawaii at Manoa. HLTA 's President & CEO initiated the inaugural Generational Mentoring program with the assistance of Art Sarkissian of Here and Now Consulting, and involved sharing core values, learning emotional intelligence, and developing leadership skills.
The close of the 7-month program was celebrated with a luncheon at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort & Spa, where the mentors and mentees were awarded certificates and shared insight on their experience. Mahalo to Dean Thomas Bingham of the University of Hawaii at Manoa, Dr. Jerry Agrusa of Hawaii Pacific University, Steve Lundgren of Brigham Young Univeristy, Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort & Spa, and all of our Mentors and Mentees.
See what some of the mentors and mentees said about the program:
“I couldn't have been happier to be matched with Grace as my mentee! We both agreed there were 3 sessions we felt were most valuable - identifying her Core Values, E.I. and Influencing skills. These were our lengthiest and deepest discussions. It has been a rewarding experience for me to participate in this first inaugural mentorship program and I hope this will be expanded and offered to more TIM students next year. Thank you Mufi and HLTA for jumpstarting this program to develop our future industry leaders!” Phyllis Branco, Grand Naniloa Hotel Hilo.
"Through HLTA’s well structured program by Art Sarkissian of Here and Now Consulting and the excellent guidance by Mr. Niel Mason at Outrigger Ohana East, I have gradually understood the essentials to become a successful General Manager. I feel blessed to have been chosen for the program and given the opportunity to be better prepared for a career in the Hospitality Industry. I am very thankful to all the great professionals I have met and especially to Mr. Mufi Hannemann and the entire HLTA for believing in me as a HPU Student," Isabella Brostroem, Hawaii Pacific University.
"I was thrilled to share topics i.e. “Emotional Intelligence” and “The Power Of Storytelling” which certainly were not initially available to me as I shaped my hospitality career. As for my student…Wow!!! Look out hospitality universe…this generation is beyond impressive. Trang is a bright, articulate, fiercely goal oriented future leader who will no doubt generate success… this program allowed me the opportunity to do a little storytelling of my own, which I hope will add some light to Trang’s many future opportunities and experiences," Thomas Foti, Wailea Beach Resort - Marriott, Maui.
"I am so grateful I got the opportunity to be mentored by Lynette Eastman. She is an amazing lady and I learned a lot from her experiences and her knowledge that she shared with me. I learned how to prepare myself for my future potentials ahead of me, and learned how to be professional in the business world especially in the hotel industry. I loved every minutes of our meeting when Lynette was talking about what to treasure in life. Lynette cared about the potential of others. She cared about her employees and every body around her. One of the vital items she taught me was very well explained are core values and how these will help me in life with finding a career. I will always remember this mentorship program because it taught me how to be a professional future employee and how to always walk that path," Toetu Lepule, Brigham Young University - Hawaii.
“My personal experience with Generational Mentoring has been amazing. My mentor, Kelly Hoen, is a spectacular mentor and leader. She holds all the values and characteristics I look for in a leader. The skills I learned through this program will be the foundation of my career. My core values of Polished, Thoughtful, and Enthusiastic will help guide me in my leadership style and navigate me through my career.
Thank you HLTA for this wonderful opportunity and I have really enjoyed my time," Derek Lin, University of Hawaii at Manoa.
“Mentoring our future Generation for a career in Hospitality is a great honor. My mentee, Estelle was so engaged and prepared for every session. An absolute pleasure.
I learned a lot about what the next generation of our Hospitality leaders are looking for in their career experience. I feel this program is a great experience for both the Mentor and Mentee.
Congratulations to HLTA for being the pacesetter on an industry wide program that looks to developing our next generation of hospitality Leaders," Cheryl Williams, The Royal Hawaiian, A Luxury Collection Resort.
See below for the full list of mentors and mentees:
Brigham Young University - Hawaii:
Steve Lundgren, Manager, Center for Hospitality & Tourism
Mentor: Julie Arigo, Waikiki Parc Hotel
Mentor: Lynette Eastman, Surfjack & Waikiki Pearl
Hawaii Pacific University:
Jerome Agrusa, Ph.D., Chair/Professor, Hospitality Tourism & Management
Mentor: Denise Wardlow, Westin Princeville Ocean Resort Villas
Mentor: Niel Mason, Outrigger OHANA
Mentor: Phyllis Branco, Hilo Nani Loa Hotel
Mentor: Charles Young, Hyatt Centric Waikiki Beach
University of Hawaii at Manoa:
Thomas Bingham, Dean, School of Travel Industry Management
Mentor: Kelly Hoen, The MODERN HONOLULU
Mentor: Angela Nolan, Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas
Mentor: Cheryl Williams, Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort
Mentor: Craig Anderson, Mauna Kea Resort
Mentor: Thomas Foti, Wailea Beach Marriott Resort & Sp
Here at HLTA, we have consistently been taking on new initiatives and expanding benefits to our members. One of the initiatives we started this year in honor of our 70th Anniversary is the addition of several new scholarships, the latest being two $2500 scholarship for one Active and one Allied member’s immediate relative. Candidates for this scholarship should be a son or daughter of an HLTA member employee who is graduating from high school, admitted to a university, college, or vocational institution, and holds a cumulative GPA of 3.2 or higher. We ask that no general managers or c-suite level executives apply for this award.
To apply, candidates must be vetted through their HLTA member, and each member can submit up to two (2) qualified applicants to firstname.lastname@example.org or the HLTA office (2270 Kalakaua Avenue, Suite 1702, Honolulu, HI, 96815) by Monday, May 1, 2017.
Other scholarships we have introduced this year include: two additional $2500 scholarships at the Citizen-Scholar awards, totaling to four $2500 scholarships for a top student from Maui, Hawaii Island, Kauai, and Oahu on top of the $1000 scholarship each student receives from a participating HLTA member; the Don Ho Legacy scholarship in conjunction with the Pauahi Foundation for a student of Hawaiian ancestry pursuing music or performing arts at the community college or university level and the HLTA Ho’okipa Award which was recently presented at the Maui AgFest to a student from Maui High School pursuing her studies in hospitality.
Last year, one of our initiatives included the launch of a young professionals committee called HYPE – Hospitality’s Young Professionals and Entrepreneurs. This is a group I modeled off of my Pacific Century Fellows program, and I am proud to see it flourish into the success it is today after just one year. In fact, HYPE will be celebrating its first anniversary on Tuesday, April 25 at the International Market Place Grand Lanai, and we invite you to join in on the fun with them and learn what HYPE is all about.
As I mentioned in a previous Mufi’s Message, we have also been working on starting three new committees: Agriculture, Housekeeping, and Technology. All of these committees have started to get the gears turning, and I’m pleased to announce that the Housekeepers Advisory Council (HAC) has just launched and is now taking housekeeping professionals from both lodging properties and allied businesses into its membership.
This group will focus on learning opportunities including the latest trends in regards to housekeeping, best practices, health & safety, as well as scholarships, career opportunities and professional development.
We invite you to contact Dean Nakasone at email@example.com for membership information or questions about the Housekeeping Advisory Council.
In the realm of government affairs the Honolulu City Council Budget Committee held a special meeting regarding the city’s budget on April 11th. During this meeting our bill of concern, Bill 31 (2017), which proposes to raise the real property tax on the hotel and resort classification was replaced with Resolution 17-70 which seeks to accomplish the same increase. The Resolution’s effect would raise the real property tax rate for hotels and resorts by 50 cents on the $1,000, this would take the current rate of $12.90 to $13.40. Those that will be affected by these increases are not just the hotels themselves but all vendors that lease space from a hotel. HLTA will be holding a third meeting to strategize engagement on this issue this Wednesday, April 19th at the HLTA office at 4:00 pm, if you are interested in participating please feel free to contact Jared Higashi at firstname.lastname@example.org. The resolution will now head to the full council which will slot it for reading next week Wednesday, April 26th at 10:00 am (unless mentioned otherwise).
We send a big mahalo to all the industry stakeholders who have supported testimony in opposition to this increase and look forward to further participation from the industry as we battle the proposed resolution.
*Click here to see HLTA's testimony regarding the real property tax increase.
Now on the Legislative front, April 13th marked the second crossover of the 2017 Hawai‘i State legislative session. During this time all bills that are still alive will cross back over to their originating chambers (House/Senate) where the committee chairs that handled the bill throughout session will have the opportunity to opine on the matter. If there is a disagreement to any portion of the measure the bill will go to conference committee. Conference committee constitutes of appointed members from each chamber (House/Senate) where the goal is to come to an agreement on each bill’s final language.
It is anticipated that most, if not all, substantial measures will end up in conference committee which has become the case with all of HLTA’s tracked bills. To access a list of our measures please feel free to visit our legislative tracker at: http://www.hawaiilegislativetracker.com/hlta/ClientBills.aspx
The conference committee meetings will ensue over the next 2 weeks where we will be hard at work advocating for our priority measures and opposing those that will harm our industry.
Lastly, we would like to thank all industry stakeholders who contributed testimony to the Senate Committee on Economic Development, Tourism, and Technology for the confirmation of the gubernatorial appointment of Kelly Sanders to the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority’s board of directors.
The committee has consented to Kelly Sander’s nomination. We commend Governor Ige in his nomination of Kelly as it underscores the strong belief that HLTA holds that people who have experience and come from the visitor industry can contribute immensely to our cause.
We’re just a few weeks into Spring, and it seems a lot of new properties have been “springing” up lately. Here in Waikiki, The Grand Islander by Hilton Grand Vacations recently had a successful opening, and Prince Waikiki (formerly Hawaii Prince Hotel Waikiki & Golf Club) just completed a $60M renovation and name change. Meanwhile, new hotel properties such as The Laylow Waikiki, Holiday Inn Express Honolulu-Waikiki, Hyatt Centric Waikiki Beach, The Ritz-Carlton Residences Waikiki Beach, and Hilton Garden Inn Waikiki have elevated the scene on Kuhio Avenue, especially with the newly refurbished International Market Place added to the mix.
On the west side of Oahu, Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko Olina is relatively new, and this week Thursday a Coffee Talk & Tour event presented by the HLTA Oahu Chapter will be staged at the new Hampton Inn & Suites by Hilton - Kapolei. Finally, on Maui, The Westin Nanea Ocean Villas is scheduled to open this weekend on April 15.
Spring also means that many graduating high school and college students are nearing the end of the school year, collecting scholarships for college or aiming to find a career soon after graduation. Here at HLTA, we have taken a vested interest in supporting high school and college students, as we provide a plethora of scholarships and mentorship opportunities.
For the past seven months, twelve college students studying travel industry management at UH, HPU, and BYU- Hawaii have been paired up with twelve of HLTA’s finest General Managers for a mentorship program that we worked with Art Sarkissian of Here and Now Consulting to initiate. Next Wednesday, their mentorship will culminate in a ceremonial luncheon held at the Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort & Spa. We look forward to hearing the stories and lessons learned from both the mentees and mentors at this event, and are already excited for the 2nd annual mentorship program to begin.
Also taking place in the coming weeks is our 13th annual Citizen-Scholar Awards to be held at The MODERN Honolulu on April 27 that is co-sponsored by the Department of Education and the Honolulu Star-Advertiser. For this event, 42 HLTA members are sponsoring a $1000 scholarship and lunch for 42 of Hawaii’s brightest public high school students. This year, HLTA is also giving out an additional $2500 scholarship to the top student from each county: Hawaii Island, Kauai, Maui, and Oahu. Mahalo to all the sponsors who have contributed to this event.
Stay in the know
Keep up with HLTA through our blog! Let us know what you think in the comment box below each post.