July 30th, 2010 by TRT Blog
We talk a lot about the work we do with the hospitality industry, but that industry alone is not the only one that we have had the pleasure of working with. We’ve also had the opportunity to work alongside universities and public schools, and at times that can be even more rewarding. We’re not only helping the environment, but helping schools save money that can be re-invested in the students that are enrolled at each of these schools and universities.
However, like the hotel industry, schools aren’t immune to the effects the recession has had on our nation. Public schools are facing budget cuts much the same way businesses did, and in some areas, the cuts faced are graver than others.
A look at this map shows how dire the situation can potentially be. But as the US News article states there is legislation that can be passed which may lessen or even prevent the cuts these state schools face. That’s a good temporary solution, but long term may not be as fiscally useful. We need to treat these schools in much the same way we need to treat our environment, with sustainability.
We provide a service much like what would be needed to make this sustainability possible; however others must step in and make sure that this matter gets all the proper attention it deserves.
July 27th, 2010 by TRT Blog
Google is a ubiquitous entity in the online world. Having a hand in almost all aspects of the internet has allowed it the opportunity to shape the internet. With their acquisition of flight information company ITA for $700m they have not-so-subtly announced their intentions of making a big splash in the travel industry as well.
This could have a big impact for many. On the business side, ITA has existing contracts with many of the existing trip planning companies out there that offer flight purchasing options to travelers (industry stalwarts like Expedia, Priceline and Orbitz all use information provided by ITA). Google said that the all things internet giant will continue to honor all existing contracts for its part, and it behooves them to stick with that as the Wall Street Journal reports that with such heavy advertising, online travel agencies “generate 8-10% of Google’s gross revenue world-wide”.
So, what does this mean for the consumer? This just gives another platform for travelers to search and compare prices for flights. Customers will be redirected to airline sites to book trips, unlike groups like Expedia and Orbitz who take the orders themselves. This could potentially remove business from these travel agencies in the long term, as these search engines circumvent them and bring consumers straight to the source.
In the end Google is providing a service which could positively impact an industry, one we have very close ties to. It will be interesting to see how this plays out with both consumers and businesses.
July 21st, 2010 by TRT Blog
Being given the opportunity to spread our knowledge of renovation and sustainability within our industries is always exciting for us. So when our founder is able to get out there and give others the insight into the excitement and importance about the work we do, it’s hard not to be elated.
Recently our company had the good fortune of attending one of our favorite events of the year – BITAC (Buyer Interactive Trade Alliance & Conference) East in sunny Orlando, Florida.
Our founder and fearless leader, Mario Insenga, had the opportunity to address and present to this year’s attendees on Monday.
Mario had the chance to highlight the values that he has worked to instill in TRT, being rooted in the 30+ years of work that he has experienced in the refinishing business and the unending benefits that the practices of refinishing and reusing has been able to offer the hospitality industry.
BITAC is a fantastic event that brings together top level purchasers and suppliers in the hospitality industry to network and learn from each other each year. In the past we have been able to make connections and forge relationships with some of the great decision makers from within the industry, and this year’s event certainly did not disappoint!
July 20th, 2010 by TRT Blog
With the hotel industry finally seeing signs of recovery, the focus is now turning toward renovations and conversions. Many businesses are working to increase the value of their hotels, and those looking to do so have increasingly been keeping close watch on their bottom lines. Making your money work harder is a trend we can embrace and something we work hard to make sure doesn’t go unnoticed.
According to Bruce Ford, SVP of Lodging Econometrics, a new build cycle of hotels won’t be taking place for at least another 3 years, so the renovation procedure is even more relevant now – especially for lower tiered hotel chains. But the benefit of renovation is twofold.
First, by renovating you can put a new face on your rooms without the cost associated with a complete rebuild. Second, if done properly the cost savings of an efficient renovation with sustainability and green practices in mind adds energy savings on top of the potential increase in value of the room itself.
On the Eco Green Hotel blog they throw some numbers out that show how an energy efficient renovation can positively impact your bottom line:
- The hospitality industry spends $3.7 billion a year on energy
- Electricity use accounts for 60-70% of the utility costs of a typical hotel
- Energy-efficient lighting can reduce electricity use up to 75%
The potential for cost savings is huge – not to mention the new and improved look of the rooms.
July 16th, 2010 by TRT Blog
The hospitality industry was among some of the hardest hit throughout the recession, and the climb out has been both a long and arduous process. Along the way though, many of hospitality’s largest players have looked for ways to more efficiently allocate resources and fund budgets to ensure that their hotels’ standards remained intact – or in many cases, kept on the up and up.
With efficient renovations, hotels are able to both save money and look to increase profits – each of which can make the climb easier.
In the July issue of Lodging Magazine, Jan Freitag notes that slow renewal of growth is prominent in the hotel spa industry. While room demand was considerably higher in the first quarter of 2010 compared to the same time period one year prior, many of the amenities associated with luxury hotel spas still aren’t seeing growth. Treatments which were discounted toward the end of 2008 and into 2009 still hadn’t improved their rates in 2010, with costs being roughly $2 per minute for an hour long treatment, down roughly nine percent.
With heavy discounts and people expecting more for less, any turnaround is seen as good news – and with salon sales, it appears we may have that. Freita states that the average revenue per salon service for the first quarter of 2010 was around $61. This actually is 4 percent higher than it was in the first quarter of 2009” which shows that instead of pricing remaining stagnant, it is gaining integrity.
With growth continuing in the industry albeit slowly, smart decisions with other factors of the business are paramount to making sure it stays strong.
July 13th, 2010 by TRT Blog
In recent years, the hospitality industry has seen a spike in demand and use of eco-friendly and recyclable goods — most notably textiles. Touch Textiles came about as a direct response to the demand, and we are thrilled to announce our newest addition to the textile brand with our new line of eco-friendly polyester fabrics.
In the US, 64% of municipal waste is deposited in landfills each year, of which, 51 billion plastic bottles take up space in these landfills annually. If stretched out, these bottles would wrap around the earth five times, and would take a staggering 700 years to decompose.
With the addition of the polyester line into Touch Textiles’ offerings, we are taking the bottles that are recycled and are using them to create high quality fabrics to offer as environmentally responsible alternatives in each of our re-upholstery projects. With new innovative technologies available to sort through recycled goods, we’re able to separate materials and recycle them correctly to offer the best products possible.
To make the best material for our projects with these recyclables, we need PET (Poly Ethylene Terephthalate). PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) impurities have to be removed from bottles in the plant to obtain the PET chips which are used in the fiber. Once filtered out of bottles, the chips can be turned into a fiber, and it is at this stage that we use them in our projects.
With two million bottles used every ten minutes, the opportunity to lower the use of virgin materials in our products and increase the sustainability of our planet is more present than ever — especially when only ten bottles are needed for a pound of fabric. That translates to a possible 1.2 million pounds of fabric from just an hour’s worth of plastic bottles being used!
To learn more about our eco-friendly textile offerings, visit http://www.touchtextiles.com/
July 9th, 2010 by TRT Blog
In this weekly radio address on Saturday, President Obama announced that the Department of Energy would commit more than $1.85billion in loans to solar projects across Arizona, Colorado, and Indiana. This is great news – not only for the environment, and the possibilities of energy dependency, but a huge boost to the ecomonomy with the creation of sustainability-related jobs.
There are two companies that will benefit from the loans: Abengoa Solar Inc and Abound Solar. Abengoa will receive a loan guarantee to the tune of $1.45 billion to build a solar power plant in the aptly-named Solana in Arizona; while Abound Solar, a US start-up, will get a loan guarantee of $400 million so it can expand operations in Indiana and Colorado. Together the companies will create more than 2,000 construction jobs and 1,500 permanent jobs.
Both these investments and the corresponding organizations’ plans are interesting and part of the President’s commitment, via the $862 billion economic stimulus, to bring new technologies and industries to America. In his address he said: “ We’re going to keep competing aggressively to make sure the jobs and industries of the future are taking root right here in America.”
At The Refinishing Touch we’ve always had a soft spot for how technology can impact green initiatives and sustainability – it’s a subject lose to our hearts, so the Abengoa project has caught our eye and our imagination as the plant which will be built in Arizona will be the first in America to store thermal energy so solar energy collected at day can be used after the sun has set. Technology such as this can transform how energy is distributed – and literally bring a ray of sunshine to new energy sources.
July 2nd, 2010 by TRT Blog
We’ve talked about some of our most notable projects before, but this week we’re thrilled to be able to show you some of the work we’ve recently completed at the beautiful Omni Mandalay Hotel at Las Colinas in Irving, Texas (take a look at these before and after shots).
The materials that we use are nontoxic, nonflammable and odor-less and safe for all on-site operations to ensure that current hotel guests in surrounding rooms are left undisturbed and future guests (sometimes in the same day!) are able to enjoy the rooms and work we completed without knowing we were even there.
So if you are ever in Texas, and happen to be staying at the Omni Mandalay, be sure to take a look around!