Editorial Board   Guest Author

Ms. Farley

Jill Farley

Director of Sales & Marketing, Kinzie Hotel

Jill Farley is the Director of Sales & Marketing at Kinzie Hotel located in the heart of Chicago's bustling River North neighborhood. The 215-room independent, which is named after Chicago's first citizen, John Kinzie, features a Chicago-centric identity and an art-forward, contemporary design. A native of the Chicago/NW Indiana area, Ms. Farley brings 10 plus years of hospitality experience to the Kinzie Hotel. Having begun in the hospitality industry as a server with the Four Seasons Chicago, Ms. Farley had an opportunity to continue with Four Seasons San Francisco in their catering department. As the foundation, the Four Seasons taught her the importance of guest experience and expectations. After three years with Four Seasons, Ms. Farley joined the Westin San Francisco team as catering manager and later, group sales manager. With a concentration in the Northern California market, her focus was on the technology, pharmaceutical, and finance segments. Working with top meeting professionals, she gained the knowledge and importance of relationships and negotiations. We all like to work with people we enjoy to be around. If it's fun, it's not work at all. After six years in San Francisco, it was time to come home to Chicago. Ms. Farley joined White Lodging management company in Chicago overseeing a campus of ten hotels. Managing five brands of both full and select service hotels, this is where she fine-tuned her business strategy while leading a team of ten to success. Now as Director of Sales & Marketing at the Kinzie Hotel, Ms. Farley is able to maximize her creative side. Not having the limitation of brand restrictions, she has the flexibility to offer guests endless opportunities and authentic Chicago experiences - reinforcing Kinzie's Chicago Starts Here mantra.

Please visit http://www.kinziehotel.com for more information.

Ms. Farley can be contacted at 312-395-9000 or info@kinziehotel.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.