Ray I need you Help! - Posted by Mark

Posted by Mark on October 04, 2009 at 05:02:11:

Thank you Ray! You truly are the best!

Ray I need you Help! - Posted by Mark

Posted by Mark on October 02, 2009 at 04:56:55:

Just was wondering if you have read any good courses/books on purchasing and operating hotels or motels?

How does one evaluate a motel/hotel?


Re: Ray I need you Help! - Posted by ray@lcorn

Posted by ray@lcorn on October 02, 2009 at 07:18:15:


There are a lot of texts available about operating hotels. The best overall source of materials is the Education Institute of the American Hotel & lodging Association (AHLA) at www.ahlei.org.

However, they require AHLA membership to access their library or order from the online catalog… dumb way to do business, eh? Makes me wonder if there is a class in MBA programs about “Best Practices: How to Discourage New Customers.” A workaround is to peruse the somewhat clunky catalog interface, grab the author names of texts that look interesting, and do a search on Amazon.

For specific texts on hotel valuation, in my opinion there is one expert who stands above all others. Stephen Rushmore is an industry icon who has been working, writing and challenging the status quo of hotel valuation for thirty years. I have a copy of his original 3-ring manual published in the early 1990’s (now out of print) which was then and still is IMO the most comprehensive and thorough text on the subject ever published. I wouldn’t part with it for any price. He did a condensed edition in a case study format for the Appraisal Institute in 2001, and it is available on Amazon. Do a search using his name. It lacks the detailed methodology of the manual, but is an excellent resource. A catalog of all his work (though not the manual) is available on his company website, Hospitality Valuation Solutions (HVS) at http://www.hvs.com/Bookstore/. He offers a Hospitality Valuation Software package for $75. I haven’t used it, but would be surprised if it is anything less than excellent. You’ll also find a large library of articles on the HVS site written by his associates on various hotel topics. In short, if an author is associated with HVS, they are not only credible, but likely one of the best in their field of expertise.

Another resource that I find invaluable for staying current in the hotel biz is Jim Butler’s Hotel Law Blog. I read him regularly, and he is one of the premiere minds in the business when it comes to strategic thinking about the hospitality business. His site also offers various services and resources that can guide you through specific situations.

Last, there is a free online daily hotel newsletter available at http://www.hotel-online.com/. The site also acts as a portal to industry resources with links to many vendors and suppliers.

As to how one evaluates a hotel? Very carefully. Hotels are businesses first, with a real estate investment component. Do not ignore the former by being fooled by brokers who only see the latter.