Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Ritten

Hans Ritten

General Manager, Loews Chicago O'Hare

As general manager, Hans. Ritten oversees Loews Chicago O’Hare Hotel, located in Rosemont, IL, just outside downtown Chicago. The property features 556 guest rooms and 60 suites, 53,000 square feet of stylish meeting space, a live music and comedy venue - The Montrose Room, a gastropub - The Ashburn, an on-site art gallery, and a fully equipped fitness center.

Mr. Ritten has over 25 years of experience with both branded and independent luxury hotels in airport, suburban, convention, and resort destinations. Most recently, Mr. Ritten was general manager of Omni Hotel Chicago where he was involved with a complete room renovation in 2015, improved Medallia ranking within Omni hotels from number 28 to number 4 - including a number 1 ranking in Food & Beverage in 2016, and improved year-over-year RevPAR index in both 2015 and 2016.

Prior to Omni Hotel Chicago, Mr. Ritten was general manager of The Silversmith Hotel, a four diamond, independent luxury boutique hotel in downtown Chicago. His extensive experience including overseeing hotels and resorts as general manager, in addition to Rooms Division and Food & Beverage includes One Ocean Resort & Spa in Atlantic Beach, FL; Kansas City Airport Marriott in Kansas City, MO, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown in Philadelphia, PA; Baltimore Marriott Waterfront and Baltimore Marriott Inner Harbor in Baltimore, MD; and Interstate Hotel and Resorts in Orlando, FL.

Mr. Ritten hails from The Netherlands, is a member of the Government Affairs Committee of the Illinois Hotel and Lodging Association, and lives with his wife and teenage son in the suburbs of Chicago.

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

Mr. Ritten can be contacted at 847-544-5300 or hans.ritten@loewshotels.com

Coming up in March 2019...

Human Resources: An Era of Transition

Traditionally, the human resource department administers five key areas within a hotel operation - compliance, compensation and benefits, organizational dynamics, selection and retention, and training and development. However, HR professionals are also presently involved in culture-building activities, as well as implementing new employee on-boarding practices and engagement initiatives. As a result, HR professionals have been elevated to senior leadership status, creating value and profit within their organization. Still, they continue to face some intractable issues, including a shrinking talent pool and the need to recruit top-notch employees who are empowered to provide outstanding customer service. In order to attract top-tier talent, one option is to take advantage of recruitment opportunities offered through colleges and universities, especially if they have a hospitality major. This pool of prospective employees is likely to be better educated and more enthusiastic than walk-in hires. Also, once hired, there could be additional training and development opportunities that stem from an association with a college or university. Continuing education courses, business conferences, seminars and online instruction - all can be a valuable source of employee development opportunities. In addition to meeting recruitment demands in the present, HR professionals must also be forward-thinking, anticipating the skills that will be needed in the future to meet guest expectations. One such skill that is becoming increasingly valued is “resilience”, the ability to “go with the flow” and not become overwhelmed by the disruptive influences  of change and reinvention. In an era of transition—new technologies, expanding markets, consolidation of brands and businesses, and modifications in people's values and lifestyles - the capacity to remain flexible, nimble and resilient is a valuable skill to possess. The March Hotel Business Review will examine some of the strategies that HR professionals are employing to ensure that their hotel operations continue to thrive.