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Hotels, awards and cookies

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Cookies can be marketing, too, according to Eric Danziger, president and CEO of Wyndham Hotel Group, when he accepted the Albert E. Koehl Lifetime Achievement Award in advertising and marketing at the 55th annual Hospitality Sales & Marketing Association International’s Adrian Awards.

The event was held before an audience of more than 800 at the Marriott Marquis in New York's Times Square.

EricDanzigerAdrianAward2012Flo Lugli, the executive vice president-marketing for Wyndham Worldwide, introduced Danziger and noted that during his tenure at Doubletree Hotels, he had created what has become the signature chocolate chip cookies, offered to every guest at check-in.

”Year after year,” said Lugli, “the cookie was on the chopping block, but he saved it."

Lugli added that the answer to a recent $1600 question on Jeopardy was: "The treat provided to every guest at Doubletree Hotels."

"When the contestant said cookies," she said, "host Alex Trebek corrected them, saying ‘chocolate chip cookies.’”

In accepting the award, Danziger recalled the cookie anecdote and said, “Every guest interaction is a marketing opportunity.”

The Winthrop W. Grice Award for public relations excellence, first awarded in 1989, was given to Mary Gendron, president of Middleton & Gendron Brand Communications, an agency specializing in travel.

The “Best in Show” awards were as follows:

* Advertising: Hilton HHonors Loyalty program for “Experiences Worth Sharing” campaign

* Public Relations: Laura Davidson Public Relations for grand opening of the CRUSH teen night club at Atlantis in Paradise Island

* Digital Marketing: InterContinental Hotel Group for “Concierge Insider Guides” iPad app.

Platinum awards for excellence in those categories were also distributed. The winners are selected from a field of nearly 1,000 entries. 

Also honored were the previously named  "Top 25 Most Extraordinary Minds in Sales and Marketing." The annual list recognizes the "best of the best" in the hospitality, travel and tourism industries as selected by senior industry executives.

-- Harvey Chipkin


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