Archive of ‘Uncategorized’ category

In Recognition of Exceptional Guest Service – Laura Brown, RSC

Laura Brown displays an exceptional vase of flowers from a very appreciative Surrey guest!

Laura Brown displays an exceptional vase of flowers from a very appreciative Surrey guest!

In recognition for exceptional guest service, Laura Brown RSC agent receives a lovely bouquet of flowers from a guest who booked the Surrey. With enclosed card the guest thanks Laura for making their stay memorable.

Laura is an example of the Denihan values, passion and commitment to exceed guest expectations.

Thank you Laura for your dedication to quality guest service!

Rave Reviews at The Surrey!

Posted on behalf of Menka Uttamchandari

The BI team has been working on the results from the recent Guest Survey to all our active guests.  One part of the process is reading and categorizing all the comments made.  Mark’s favorite comment was from a Surrey guest:

“The Surrey is the only hotel I ever recommend to friends who are travelling to NYC.  I don’t tell my in-laws because they don’t deserve to stay someplace so very lovely!”

Kudos to everyone at The Surrey for a job well done!


Becky Casey and Tom Botts head to GBTA

Becky Casey and Tom Botts head to GBTA

Becky Casey has pulled off yet another stunning customer event for Denihan. Becky and Tom were invited by American Airlines’ sales leadership team to join them along with 75 top American customers (many of whom are not [YET!] Denihan customers) for a private chartered flight from JFK to San Diego on Saturday. The flight was operated by American’s new 777 and was reserved only for their customers including many Fortune 50 clients along with their major agency partners. This year’s Global Business Travel Association convention is being held over the next few days in San Diego and this was a very special way to mix and mingle with new and current customers – for example: Polo (the #1 corporate at The Surrey) Dr. Pepper (a new potential client) and PWC (another new potential client) Bloomberg (a huge account for the Gardens and soon for the 50) and KPMG – a top account at the Benjamin. Denihan was the only hotel company invited on board this special flight! Great work, Becky!

Intern Luncheon

Denihan Interns enjoying the Luncheon

 Posted on behalf of Heather Cukierman, HR Intern

On Tuesday, July 30th Denihan hosted an intern luncheon celebration for all of our intern’s hard work and efforts. The group traded some stories about their experiences as interns, enjoyed some pizza and dessert and spoke to Brooke Barrett about what they learned this summer.  Our Denihan interns this summer include:

Heather Cukierman, Human Resources
Domenica Mosco, Marketing
Alex Howell, Sales
Stephen Rivera, Sales
Sholom Silvestri, Revenue Management
Brendan Medizigian, Acquisitions & Development
Linden Mills, Restaurants and Bars
Shannon McDonagh, Corporate Operations
Bryan Navitski, Design & Construction
Bonnie Jin, Operations
Amy LaCorte, Operations

Best wishes to all our interns as they begin heading back to school! Thank you for a great summer!

The Surrey Takes Language to the Next Level

The Surrey Takes Language to the Next Level

The Front Office and Concierge teams of The Surrey Hotel spent ten hours honing their skills of an unspoken language this past week. Paul Russell and Shanine Jajh from The Luxury Academy of London brought body language and verbal communication to life through theory and group activities that created a new sense of awareness.

Each team member left with not only a stronger understanding of themselves, but also the interactions they partake in. From the non-verbal cues to the spoken word, The Surrey Front of House Team has committed to bringing luxury to life by using these skills. We look forward to sharing our success with our guests and fellow team members.

Jordan Howell
Assistant Director of Front Office

The Benjamin… Refreshed!

Posted on behalf of Katie Stamaris

For those of you who don’t know, this summer DP Holdings embarked on an ambitious refresh at The Benjamin Hotel.  It was quite the challenge: 208 rooms of new furniture, 136 kitchens with new wallcovering and refrigerators, 23 rooms of new carpet. And of course, minimal revenue displacement.

I had my doubts.  We were being given 4.5 weeks to transform a fully operational property with narrow corridors and small, old elevators. But today I can say with confidence that we did it.. And we did it well.

Too often we rush through projects and are on to the next thing before taking a breath and recognizing the hard work that has been done, so I wanted to take a moment and share a few details of what was just completed.

Here is a quick recap of what transpired:

Each day a floor was taken out of service for just two nights.  Up on guest check out rooms were cleaned and liquidated. Furniture deliveries happened 5 nights a week from 2-8 am, with installation going into the next evening. Drapery was replaced, kitchen wallcovering and select rooms of carpet were changed. Rooms were then reset and sold to new guests on the 3rd night.  All this was done with only one 1-day delay, after a very hot and tired elevator broke down.

This aggressive schedule repeated 6 days a week for the 4.5 weeks, and last Friday afternoon The Benjamin was able to sell all but two rooms complete with the new product.  (The two rooms were being used as storage and will be ready to sell tonight).  The rooms are beautiful and have been well received by guests, Ownership, Operations and Marketing.

A huge thanks goes out to The Benjamin Team – to say that it could not have been done without the outstanding support, patience and positivity of this group would be a gross understatement.  I am especially proud to be a part of this family after seeing the values we taut displayed in true form these past weeks.



Seeking out opportunities to ‘Wow’ our guests-big and small!

Seeking out opportunities to ‘Wow’ our guests-big and small!

Posted on behalf of Liz St. James, Director of Rooms, Affinia Dumont
At the Affinia Dumont, our goal is to ‘Wow’ all of our guests including our littlest visitors, and that’s just what our GSA Betsy Aguino did.
Betsy found out that it was a guest’s birthday. She was a little girl who was here with her parents and a few girlfriends to celebrate her birthday. Betsy used her own money to buy her some colorful flowers, birthday card as well as some friendship bracelets for her and her friends from our kids treasure chest. Needless to say, our young guests were thrilled as Betsy made their Affinia Dumont visit the most memorable. It doesn’t take a lot to achieve that ‘Wow’ factor but one to be dedicated to our values, using every opportunity to exceed our guests’ expectations and taking initiative. We are very proud of Betsy as she serves as a great example not only for everyone at the Affinia Dumont, but everyone at Denihan as well!

The Benjamin Managers Outing

We recently had our first managers outing at 300 New York Bowlmor Lanes which is at Chelsea Piers!

It was a great way to come together as a team and recognize whats important in building a successful organization.

Bowling B

Joe Gaeta our GM, Joshua DeBottis our AGM, Colleen Evetts our HRD and Chris Olthoff DOFO.


Albona, Chris Shiel, Stephen Stritch, Joe and Joshua

Josh Bowling

Joshua DeBottis our All Star!

Sometimes It’s The Little Things…


Posted on behalf of Jeff Egol, Director of Rooms, Affinia Shelburne

It only took a few minutes and a trip to the store to show our team that sometimes the little things we do can be really thoughtful. We got a list of everyone’s favorite snack foods recently and then surprised them late one morning to say thank you for everything they do at Shelburne everyday. The team was surprised and all smiles!


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Posted on behalf of Ron Cadiz

There has been a lot of talk about the Denihan values as of late.  However, there are two values that have a stronger impact at work and in our daily lives that are rarely spoken of—friendship and respect.

I have had the wonderful opportunity to spend time at many of the properties and have built some really solid bonds with quite a few people there, while working on what I had been tasked to do.  Not only do I hold these people in high regard, but I am proud to say that they are my friends.

This has never been more apparent while participating at the annual Restaurants & Bars Summit at the Jordan Winery in Healdsburg and San Francisco, California this past week.  The gathering of this wily band of brothers was a true testament of accomplishments and camaraderie.  Though we all share different backgrounds and may be divided by the various work places, we were still able to come together to support our endeavors not just because we want our venues to be successful, but because we want each other to be successful in what we work so hard to achieve.  The three days were spent addressing current projects as well as issues that hinder day to day operations and the solutions for these topics, in a positive and constructive manner.  And of course, no summit would be complete without some serious bonding and team-building—wine tasting, competitive fishing and a lot of delicious food and drink.

This post was not meant to gloat, rather it is show that appreciation and acknowledgement of hard work is necessary not only to boost morale but to enhance the spirits of those around you.  In every work place, it is easy to sink into the day to day, get caught up in frustrations and even raise your voice in anger (I’ve seen it many times).  I think it is also very easy to forget that we are surrounded by some pretty awesome people.  These are the people that fight the same fight every day.  They may not always be your friends, but giving them the respect that they deserve goes a very, very long way.


Photography by Ronald Cadiz & Daniel Martinez

General Manager’s Meeting

Posted on behalf of Danette Opaczewski

The quarterly General Manager meeting was held at The James Chicago on Monday and Tuesday of this week.  Along with the GMs, a few members of the management team traveled from the corporate office in New York to attend.  Following the day’s presentations covering various topics including revenue management, brand management and human resources, Kris Aldana had chartered a yacht to sail down the Chicago River as the group ate, drank and laughed.

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From the looks of it, this year’s GM’s meeting was a total success!


<0 Mr. Softee cools The Shoreham, The Mansfield and Corp Teams

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The Shoreham Sales team, lobby attendant and accounting teams enjoy their vanilla ice cream with General Manager, Glenda Maldonado.

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The Ark properties accounting team takes a break from crunching numbers to enjoy their Mr. Softee Ice Cream! 🙂

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The Shoreham’s housekeeping and mini bar members show their smiles after ordering their COOL treat on a hot day 🙂

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The Mansfield’s chef and room attendants take time to enjoy their treat on one of the hottest days of the summer!

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Our corporate interns come by to support the Ark properties Ice Cream Day 🙂

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Our corporate payroll team comes by to enjoy a Mr. Softee Ice Cream

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A special thanks to my personal assistant who handed tickets to team members with a smile 🙂 🙂 🙂 on the hottest days of the year…
SH-Bren2 ice cream 07-19-13

Hotel Manager/AGM/Director of Rooms Meeting

On Thursday, July 18th, the Hotel Managers, AGMs and Directors of Rooms for Denihan, assembled for a fun filled, informational half day meeting. The morning proved to be a great opportunity to bring our talented operational leaders together to get to know one another and have productive dialogue around their roles. The team spent some additional time discussing owner’s relations, leadership behaviors and reviewed operational metrics with the Corporate Operations Team. The Managers level of enthusiasm and engagement was infectious as they brought some great insight and innovative best practices to the table. Great Job Team!!!

Amazing Race at Affinia Gardens


It was exciting to see the sales, revenue management, business intelligence, and brand management teams participate in the “Amazing Race”. They visited all NYC hotels due to the annual conference taking place. Denihan Associates at each hotel welcomed these teams in their own special way and guided them with clues about the properties, different brands, and unique offerings. At the Affinia Gardens, the team took a quick moment to prepare a hospitality suite showcasing their amazing Junior Patio to ‘race participants’. Like all hotels, the Affinia Gardens has active plans aimed at enhancing the guest experience and providing extraordinary service. Affinia Gardens focuses on Affinia TLC (Tender Loving Comfort) programs and the team decided to incorporate this into their hospitality suite for the racers. We provided some unique amenities on a scorching day, which included ice cold bottled water, Affinia Gardens logoed head bands, race themed stickers, granola bars, and a huge Thank You banner. At Denihan, it is great to see that everyone practices integrity for our external and internal guests. We appreciate the hard work and important efforts everyone plays in selling our fabulous hotels and locations across the US.

Family Feuding at The James Chicago

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On Monday the James Chicago welcomed Patrick Denihan and David Duncan with a warm reception and a little bit of a surprise: instead of the traditional Town Hall meeting, The James Chicago kicked off the afternoon with a little game of “Denihan Family Feud”. There were two teams composed of four James associates, plus David and Patrick as their team leaders. Team David vs. Team Patrick epically battled back and forth in a trivia game testing their knowledge and speed. The first round tested their Denihan knowledge and the second round featured pop culture trivia questions from 1963. The game was tight throughout, and after the second round the teams were tied! Thus, the tie breaker. Each team was asked to create their best paper airplane and the plane that flew the farthest won. After some frantic folding and one lone toss each, it was Team David’s aeronautical skills that won them the game. The Town Hall attendees enjoyed the game as well as Patrick and David’s inspiring words after. Through their presentation associates learned about the current state of the company, the accomplishments so far, and the plans for the future ahead. We wrapped up the afternoon with some delicious cupcakes courtesy of Jove T. Hubbard. Kudos to banquets, pastries, the JAT Team and HR who all helped make this amazing event such a success!

The Affinia Shelburne All-Stars Gear Up to Host MLB All-Star Week 2013!

 all star signall stars at desk

As the frenzy surrounding MLB All-Star Week 2013 hits a fever pitch here in NYC, the All-Stars here at Affinia Shelburne are all geared up to host fans and representatives from Major League Baseball. The Shelburne joins many local NYC hotels and businesses in support of these exciting All-Star events.

all star group

Check out some of the Shelburne All-Stars as they sport their promotional t-shirts and baseball hats generously donated to us by the folks at MLB!

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And don’t forget to tune into the All-Star Game tomorrow night at 8pm coming to you from Citi Field!

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Integrity – An Affinia Gardens/Affinia Manhattan Story

At Denihan, we all understand the value of integrity; especially when it comes to our relationship with others. Today, Steve Sasso, General Manager at the Affinia Gardens and Jeff Hentze, General Manager at James NY were very excited to see that a server at Harrington’s (local bar/restaurant across the street from the Affinia Manhattan) was using an Affinia mustache pen. Jeff and Steve made a quick call to Joe Kelly, GM at Affinia Manhattan and his team to share the good news and conjure up a gesture of appreciation. They quickly prepared a small gift bag for the server and restaurant. After sharing the surprise and posing for photo, they had a wonderful conversation with the restaurant staff about the various Denihan hotels and how much we truly appreciated the relationship we have with our community and vendors. This story truly speaks to how integrity is demonstrated on a daily basis by all associates/team-members within Denihan.




Submitted on behalf of Lisa Zandee

Today was the kick-off of Denihan’s annual sales conference for 2013.  To get things started off right, the sales, revenue management, business intelligence and brand management departments have been broken down into teams to complete The Amazing Race scavenger hunt.  Starting from The Benjamin Hotel, each team will have to race from property to property hunting for clues in hopes of claiming the 1st  place prize!

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In addition to the scavenger hunt, each department had to come up with a Denihan-themed tee shirt.  Check out some of our favorites from today!!

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Can anyone guess whose patriotism got in the way of a handsome portrait?!

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Spotted on South Beach!

Lisa Zandee relocated to Miami? No, we wish, but she sure looks cozy working out of The James Royal Palm’s newly renovated Sales office last week!

With a new setup and a little more room than before, we are thrilled to be able to offer our Denihan team members a space to work while they are visiting, so come check out the new office!
Lisa Zandee

The Shoreham~I ShoreAM Family~

RETIRE4- Wilfredo SH RETIRE 2-Wilfredo SHRETIRE- Wilfredo SHRETIRE3- Wilfredo SH

Housekeeping planned their farewell to their beloved houseman, Wilfredo. After more than a decade of service, Wilfredo is retiring to Las Vegas.

The Shoreham housekeeping family all contributed out of their own money to plan a great lunch and a cake.

Good Luck Wilfredo!

From Your Family at The Shoreham :o)

The Franklin-Photo of appreciation..

Guest, Mr. Schützenmeier had forgotten his (Canon PowerShot SX 240 HS) camera in the shuttle car taking him to the airport. A team member of  The Franklin left a massage for the guest that the camera was found. The guest asked us to send it to his home in Germany and we did. We received the following picture and letter of appreciation..


THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR IT!!! WE HAVE NO PHOTOS OF OUR BEAUTIFUL STAY AT NEW YORK AND YOU FOUND OUR CAMERA.  Thank you so much for all! Thank you, thank you, thank you! Our next time in New York we´ll spend in your hotel again. We had the best holidays ever (until we lost our camera) today our camera has come. Thank you so much!!! We told so many people and they were all amazed at the helpfulness. In Germany is not self-evident. Many many thanks. You are the best. Until next time, and again many thanks.

Greetings from the cold rainy Germany

The Schützenmeier’sthe franklin-chit chat 07-08


Posted on behalf of Sims Foster

Don’t do what’s easy.  Do what’s right. 

I grew up in a small town in the Catskill Mountains in upstate New York.  And when I say small I mean one stoplight kind of small.  Where and how we grow up shapes all of us more intensely than we realize much of the time.  It becomes the foundation, the root, the core of who we become.  It’s not really about positive or negative.  Or bad or good.  It just is. It becomes the fulcrum that we pivot around for the rest of our lives.

In small town life there is a special, heightened magnification on certain aspects that may not get the same kind of attention in larger towns or cities.  Money or material wealth gets some appreciation.  But not much.  Education and exposure to the larger world are respected and worth a little more.  And certainly friendliness and openness get higher marks.  But the true currency in a small town is your reputation, your honesty, your commitment to your word.  Your integrity.  Without that not much else really matters and certainly nothing else can replace it.

I was lucky enough to have my grandparents live just 1.2 miles away from my parents’ house.  I biked it and walked it enough to forever appreciate that was not, and is not, less or more than 1.2.  Visiting my grandmother was like having Christmas every day.  Or more appropriately, Hanukkah since she was Jewish.  She was loved by all because she was an embodiment of life and love.  She was one of those women who radiated and whose infection for living fully was contagious.

And in the same house was my grandfather.  A quiet, stoic man who had been a tank commander in the Army during WWII.  A man who fought, like so many in his generation, for his country and for the principles and beliefs for which he believed it stood.  Upon returning from the war he picked up where he had left off.  As a builder of homes. Today we would call him an architect or general contractor.  But he always just called himself a Builder.  For decades my grandfather built homes for his friends and clients and later on for their children as they began their adult lives.  He was the man to turn too when you wanted an honest, solid home built.  While he was a creative builder, he did not build mansions or opulent estates.  More often he built for people with tight budgets and if needed, he worked out payment plans based not on credit reporting but on handshakes.

When I was eleven years old I asked my grandfather if I could work for him.  Begrudgingly (and likely with insistence from his wife) he acquiesced. He gave me the “clean up” jobs right away.  The worst jobs he could find for me.  He’d drop me off at 6am with a packed lunch and come back at 4pm to take me home.  I still believe it was in hope I’d give up quickly and he’d be able to go back about his way.  But he failed to recognize something about me that has nothing to do with integrity; pure stubbornness.  He was stuck with me no matter what he tried.  Slowly but surely my quiet, tough as nails, intimidating grandfather started to soften up.  And over a few years of me earning his respect our relationship blossomed into something special.

Later on when I was a teenager my grandfather called me and asked me if I could help him with a job.  At this point he was semi-retired and was entering the last years of his life.  He was not as strong and intimidating physically but was still as strong-willed as ever.  He needed help fixing a dishwasher and thought he’d need my help pulling it out from under the cabinet to get to the back of it.  It seemed like a strange, beneath his pay grade job request but he picked me up and we chatted about a bunch of things as we drove.  As we pulled into the driveway of the house where the job was I realized it was the first house I had ever worked on with him.  7 years before.  And so we were there to fix a dishwasher.  That he had installed 7 years prior.  I immediately boiled up with anger.  How could these people expect the builder of their house to do a repair like this so ridiculously long after it was built?  How could they trouble an old man whom had no obligation?  Why the hell didn’t my grandfather tell them “Sorry” instead of saying “I’ll come on over and see what I can do”?  This was completely selfish and unfair.

As I stood there in front of his big old Chevy that he had recently begun having some trouble climbing into and out of, seething, I turned to tell him what I thought.  As I turned to him he looked me straight in the eyes.  He knew what I was thinking.  And his eyes conveyed that he didn’t care.  That coming here to him was a matter of keeping his word to build a house that would last.  And that regardless of the menial nature of the task and regardless of what I thought, he was not going to jeopardize his Integrity in this matter.  Certainly not after over 8 decades of upholding it.

“You Comin’?” was all he said.

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At Denihan we find ourselves as part of a company that doesn’t just speak about integrity.  It lives it.  A reputation is built in small every day steps.  And Denihan has decades of those days as proof of its integrity.  Brooke and Patrick are not only trustworthy but their word is as strong as any contract that could be drawn.  They carry the value not just as a philosophy but as an integral part of who they are personally and how they’ve built this company.

Integrity is a responsibility.  At Denihan that responsibility is a large one.  What was so painstakingly built and protected by so many can be given away in a fleeting minute.  With every guest we have the responsibility to show them who we are and pass to them the comfort that they will be taken care of by a group that is guided by unflinching integrity.

Integrity is also a gift.  To be able to say that we work at Denihan and the instant credibility it gives to us as a team and as individuals is not to be taken for granted.  It is a gift that was hard earned and one that needs to be protected and ultimately passed to others that join us as we grow both physically and culturally.  Think of it as the Olympic torch.

In a world where we hear less and less about ideals like integrity it is an opportunity and a privilege for us to be able to cultivate it and live it here at Denihan.  It will provide us with a deep sense of personal and professional satisfaction while connecting us together.  It is a value that will support us every step of the way.

As much as we are a big city company with hotels, restaurants and bars in New York, Chicago, Washington DC and Miami right now, we have integrity that would stand the test of any small town.

Ice Cream Social at The James Chicago

Submitted by Krista Krauss, Concierge @ The James Chicago


What better way to beat the heat and celebrate our Team Member of the Month award than with a hearty helping of Executive Pastry Chef Jove Hubbard’s amazing ice cream?! This past Friday we crowned our May Team Member of the Month while christening our newly added Private Dining Room in David Burke’s Primehouse. While enjoying the ice cream, team members gathered and listened to hotel updates from the executive team and watched our newest TMOM receive her award. Jeanette Diaz, our James Assistant queen, was May’s lucky winner. Well, I shouldn’t really say lucky- I should say hard working, positive, helpful and always entertaining. (Did you see her ChitChat post on Innovation last week? It’s amazing!) So a big Congratulations to Jeanette, and a big thank you to Jove and our Primehouse Team for the cool treats.

PS- Wait and see what Jove and the Pastry Team have in store for our Denihan 50th Anniversary Town Hall meeting!

Ice Cream makes everybody happy!

GM scooping ice cream.



Innovative Bell/Door Team at Affinia Gardens

Innovative Bell/Door Team at Affinia Gardens

Our Bell/Door Persons are the Best!

Not only are they a huge part of our front office operation, but we just wouldn’t be complete without our gents in fedoras!

Our location sometimes makes it difficult for guests to access cabs. However, our Bell/Door team will often hail a cab from two or three block away and jump in for a ride back to our hotel.

Here is a picture of Sal Khalil on his 11 year anniversary with Denihan. This family was so impressed by what they had just seen, they couldn’t help but pose for the camera.

If that doesn’t say innovation, I don’t know what does!

Go team Affinia Gardens 🙂

SOBE Oceanfront Bikes!

The James Royal Palm First Happy Rental!

The James Royal Palm First Happy Rental!

Yesterday we introduced The James Royal Palm Bikes! Within minutes of having them available the couple below decided to be the first ever guests to use this innovative amenity at The James Royal Palm. Like our umbrellas, “The James Royal Palm Orange” looks beautiful against the ocean skyline…
Our guests absolutely loved them!

An Innovative Monday at Affinia Gardens

An Innovative Monday at Affinia Gardens

We all sometimes start off our Monday morning the same way; tired from our weekend adventures and dragging our feet into work. Also known as a ‘case of the Mondays’.

However, this Monday morning was a little sweeter. Deanna Merlo, Office Manager, arrived to work and discovered a tray of cookies on her desk.
After grabbing one (couldn’t resist!), she asked around about where they came from.
She was delighted to hear that Affinia Gardens intern Amy Lacorte was baking up a storm this weekend. Amy had made a special batch of chocolate chip cookies from scratch for the entire Affinia Gardens Team.

It was so thoughtful of her to think of us over the weekend. We caught a glimpse of Amy giving them out during lunch and everyone couldn’t wait for the picture to be over before grabbing them!!

Thanks to Amy, our week started off strong, no one is SWEETER than you 🙂

50th Anniversary Celebration Innovation

Thanks to Team Sand-tastic today’s 50th Anniversary Town Hall at The James Royal Palm featured an oversized & customized sculpture of our Denihan and 50th Anniversary logos. In addition, our Pastry Chef Christie Galnares has created a little something to also recognize this special day! HAPPY 50TH Denihan from sunny Miami !

Happy 50th !

Happy 50th !

Sundae Fun-Day at the Affinia Dumont

It has been a slow coming for this year’s summer season, so we thought the best way to help our associates celebrate summer is to have a SUNDAE FUN-DAY.  Our Rafferty room was transformed into a playground with a Ping-Pong table, bingo, Nintendo Wii and we even had an X-box dance competition.  Our associates enjoyed a nice cool off with make-your-own sundaes with plenty of yummy toppings.  And of course there were prizes!  Below are some pictures from our Sundae Fun-Day including a Ping-Pong play off with the Engineering and Housekeeping Teams-Engineers won by one point! 





Affinia Manhattan Relaunch Pep Rally

After an extensive renovation to include sleeping rooms, meeting space and lobby area, the Affinia Manhattan is ready for its unveiling! To assist the Team in preparing for such an exciting time in the hotel’s history, we implemented an extensive training schedule over the past 2 weeks to include: Customer Service Training, Train the Trainer Learning Sessions, SOP Training, Team Building Initiatives and Competitive Analysis Visits. As a final “Thank You” to everyone for all their hard work and efforts, we ended the week with two Pep Rally Breakfasts – one at 3AM for our amazing overnight crew and another at 8AM for the remaining team members. The energy level from both groups was contagious (even at 3AM!) as we distributed fun t-shirts in different colors with different sayings on the back promoting our team’s amazing work which included: “I Put The ZING in AMAZING”, “Bottom Line – I ROCK”, and “Hello, My Name Is AWESOME”. Best wishes to the entire Affinia Manhattan Team moving forward!!! Great job!!!

am groupovernightregjoe

Innovation with a cause!



The James Royal Palm team found an innovative way to create awareness and raise over $500.00 for The James Royal Palm Team Member Assistance Fund today! Thanks to the team members donated $5.00 to receive a sticker and the ability to wear Miami Heat Gear on this special game 7 day!! GO HEAT!

Visiting the West Coast Office

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For those of you that attended our recent Town Hall Meetings, you may have heard David Duncan refer to our “asset” on the West Coast – Julie Purnell! Julie is our SVP of Acquisitions based in San Francisco. This week, Patrick Denihan, Brooke Barrett and John Barrett took some time to visit with Julie at our West Coast office and look at growth opportunities. The team has been spending time both in San Francisco and Seattle. Can you identify the famous place where the group met this interesting guy? (Hopefully nobody mentioned the new “Bacon Bar” at the James Chicago during the photo op!!!)

Innovative Wedding at The Surrey

Innovative Wedding at The Surrey

As you may know, The Surrey is currently undergoing ‘historical preservation’ on its facade. This can result in loud noises and an overall inconvenience to our guests. However, The Surrey overcame this obstacle and delivered a truly incredible wedding for two very special guests. Below is their enthusiastic and heartwarming feedback…

“I can’t express in words how grateful and overjoyed I am at how everything went last night. I don’t think it could have more perfect. It was more beautiful than I believed possible and everything went so smoothly and effortless.”

“When we checked out last night we took one last moment on the balcony and both started crying. We didn’t want to leave. It was a very special weekend.”

Go team Surrey!!!!

Fathers Day – Affinia Gardens

Fathers Day - Affinia Gardens

On Friday we took a minute to gather in our break room with the gentlemen of Affinia Gardens.
Not all of them are Fathers, but we always celebrate as if they are!

They were each presented with a Subway Restaurant gift card so they could treat themselves to a breakfast or lunch.

The end result, all smiles!!

Innovation in Recognition at Affinia Gardens

Innovation in Recognition at Affinia Gardens

We’ve all heard of management appreciating and rewarding associates, however this story is quite unique!

Earlier this week, Krys Krol , an outstanding Bell/Door Person, took it upon himself to order the front office management team a couple of pizza pies for lunch.

Krys wanted to recognize what management does on a day-to-day basis to support the operation. Our whole office was incredibly surprised and very excited to have some yummy pizza for lunch!

Tying in with our monthly value of Innovation, Krys thought outside of the box while recognizing the management team.

As you can see in this picture, his wonderful gesture put a huge smile on our faces. Thanks Krys for your recognition and originality!!

“Pool Party” at James New York

Although the weather did not cooperate, it certainly did not dampen the team spirit at the James New York at their Annual Pool Party this week! Dancing shoes replaced bathing suits as the group enjoyed great music, delicious food and raffle prizes on the Roof. Teamwork was evident as the smiles and laughter of the James New York associates brightened up an otherwise gloomy day here in New York. Great Job Team!072066

Why Calligraphy?

After several town hall meetings last week, many people have asked about the new calligraphy that is being used to represent our values and The Art of Hospitality. We purposely selected calligraphy because much like hospitality, it’s more than a smile or a simple brush on paper. Calligraphy is a developed and refined skill that takes many years to learn and perfect. When calligraphy is done right there is a meticulous attention to detail and the same applies to hospitality.

What personifies The Art of Hospitality to you?

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