Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Portman

Jack Portman

Chairman & CEO, John Portman & Associates

Jack Portman serves as chairman and CEO for John Portman & Associates. John Portman & Associates is an internationally renowned architectural design firm with offices in Atlanta and Shanghai. The firm specializes in designing innovative, engaging and memorable spaces that serve the people who use them and benefit the community. Mr. Portman also serves as chairman and CEO of Portman's Chinese companies, Portman International & Portman Development. He maintains a current focus on all of the companies' activities worldwide.

Mr. Portman began his career as an architect for John Portman & Associates in Atlanta. He later expanded his responsibilities from the architecture and design field to a position of corporate leadership. Initially working with the domestic arm of the Portman companies' real estate development, he subsequently became involved in the companies' activities in the Middle East, particularly Egypt, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia. He moved to Hong Kong and later to Shanghai to pursue the companies' international endeavors in the design, development and management of all East Asian overseas projects. Mr. Portman was responsible for Portman's early entry into China, at which time Portman Holdings became one of the first western development companies to develop real estate in China.  He later established Portman offices in Warsaw, India and South Korea.

Mr. Portman, a licensed architect, holds a B.S. degree in architecture from the Georgia Institute of Technology and a Master's degree in architecture from the Graduate School of Design, Harvard University.

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

Mr. Portman can be contacted at 404-614-5555 or jack@portmanusa.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.