Hyatt Hotels & Resorts, one of the world’s premier hotel companies, has announced an expansion of its partnership with LRA Worldwide, Inc. Based just outside of Philadelphia, LRA currently conducts quality assurance site evaluations for all of the existing Hyatt Hotels & Resorts brands. Beginning this summer, LRA will launch customized programs for the latest branch of the Hyatt family tree - the Hyatt Select Group, comprised of the Hyatt Place and Hyatt Summerfield Suites brands.
Hyatt Place, which is the company’s “lifestyle brand” venture into the upscale select service industry segment, and Hyatt Summerfield Suites, its extended stay offering, will each have decidedly different needs in their respective evaluation programs. Whereas the traditional Hyatt evaluation drills down into the performance of each department at a given property, the Hyatt Place program will deploy LRA as part of the opening team, charged with ensuring that all elements of the brand and service promise are in place from the start. The Hyatt Summerfield Suites evaluation will be designed to measure whether facility and service standards are in compliance with Hyatt requirements at these newly-renovated properties.
“Each of our brands is designed to deliver a distinct and memorable guest experience,” explained Jim Chu, Senior Vice President of Franchise Services and Owner Relations at Hyatt Select Group. “LRA’s unique approach and deep sector experience in the hospitality and lodging industries made it an easy decision to expand our relationship. They customize each program to the specifications of the individual brand and deploy professional hospitality consultants to conduct the site evaluations, ensuring that we get the insights we need to deliver the promised guest experience at every property, every day.”
Including Hyatt, LRA provides performance measurement services to eight of the top ten hotel companies in the world. In all, LRA’s Quality Assurance practice conducts nearly 13,000 site visits and evaluations each year, either as a stand-alone offering or as an integrated part of an overall Customer Experience Management project. In addition to its lodging clients, LRA provides QA services to industry leaders in sports (Troon Golf, the PGA TOUR), Conference Centers (ARAMARK), the National Park Service (Yosemite National Park, Kennedy Space Center), Gaming (Churchill Downs, Hard Rock Hotels & Casinos) and Travel (The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey).
“It is always quite gratifying when an existing client expands its relationship with LRA, as it speaks to the value that we are providing on a daily basis,” said John Roberto, Senior Vice President and Managing Director of LRA’s Quality Assurance practice. “By definition, the Hyatt Place guest experience should be quite distinct from the Hyatt Regency experience, which should stand apart from the Summerfield Suites experience, and so on. Hyatt is being very proactive about designing and implementing the proper guest experience quality controls as its portfolio and the breadth of its offerings grow.”
The first Hyatt Place property opened in 2006 in Lombard, IL; there are another 80 hotels near completion that are slated to open with LRA’s assistance during the Summer and Fall of 2007, with a total of 120 projected by the end of this year. Hyatt Summerfield Suites will roll out 15 renovated properties within the calendar year; LRA will begin site evaluations of those properties immediately thereafter.
About Global Hyatt Corporation
Global Hyatt Corporation (hyatt.com), one of the world’s premier hotel companies, offers today’s travelers over 735 hotels and resorts (over 136,000 rooms) in more than 44 countries. The company’s affiliates own, operate, manage and franchise Hyatt branded hotels and resorts under the Park Hyatt™, Grand Hyatt™, Hyatt Regency™, Hyatt Resorts™, Hyatt™, Hyatt Place™ and Hyatt Summerfield Suites™ brands. In April 2007, Hyatt launched its newest global brand, Andaz™. Global Hyatt Corporation is also the owner of Hyatt Vacation Ownership, Inc. operator of the Hyatt Vacation Club and fractional residential properties and U.S. Franchise Systems, Inc, which franchises Hawthorn Suites and Microtel Inns and Suites. From the U.S. and Canada, reservations for any Hyatt hotel worldwide may be obtained by calling 1-800-233-1234 or visit the website.
About LRA Worldwide, Inc.
LRA Worldwide, Inc. (LRAworldwide.com) is a leading consulting, organizational development and research company that specializes in Customer Experience Management (CEM). LRA helps companies and brands design and deliver the optimal customer experience across all key touch points using an integrated suite of services that measure and improve service quality, customer satisfaction, employee performance, loyalty, customer advocacy and profitability. LRA specializes in “operationalizing the brand” – turning brand promise and customer strategy into operational reality. LRA’s CEM practice areas include Customer Experience Strategy Consulting, Standards Development & Content Management, Organizational Development & Training, Research and Quality Assurance & Mystery Shopping; these are either deployed together in a strategic manner to continually monitor and improve the customer experience or deployed individually to address a specific tactical client need.
LRA’s clients include some of the world’s leading companies and brands, including Starwood Hotels & Resorts, Hard Rock Hotels and Casinos, the PGA TOUR, Albertsons Supermarkets, the NBA and First Niagara Financial Group.