Editorial Board   

Mr. Dolce

Andy Dolce

Founder, Chairman & Managing Partner, Dolce International

Andrew (Andy) J. Dolce founded Dolce International in 1981. Mr. Dolce turned the company into the world's leading conference center company in the hospitality industry, with 21 properties throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe. He also holds the distinction of being named one of the "25 Most Influential Executives" in the meetings and travel industries by both "Meeting News" and "Business Travel News" magazines. Mr. Dolce began his career in the meetings and hospitality industry while working for the American Management Association, where he managed 600 conferences a year, throughout the U.S. While there, Mr. Dolce recognized the need for both outstanding hotel facilities and a well-orchestrated meeting experience. Mr. Dolce went on to become executive vice president for Harrison Conference Services. From there he moved to Houston and was responsible for the development and operation of the Houstonian, the first integrated hotel, conference center, spa and fitness center. After the successful completion of this project, Mr. Dolce made the final and decisive move to the meetings segment of the hospitality industry and started his own company. Born in New York, Mr. Dolce studied Economics at Iona College. He earned a Master's Degree from Cornell University where he wrote and published a book on economics for the food industry. Dolce served in the U.S. Marine Corps, earning the rank of Captain. Today, Mr. Dolce is a board member and past president of the International Association of Conference Centers (IACC). He is also on the board of New York University's Center for Hospitality, Tourism and Travel Administration and serves on Iona College's Legal Board of Trustees. As the recipient of the Mel Hosansky Award, Mr. Dolce was rewarded with the association's highest honor for work in the conference center industry.

Mr. Dolce can be contacted at 201-505-5906 or andy.dolce@dolce.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.