CHA, CTO team with research firm to collect hotel data

The Caribbean Hotel Association and the Caribbean Tourism Organization have partnered with Tennessee-based Smith Travel Research in the collection and distribution of hotel performance data for the Caribbean.

In the past, much of the data on hotel performance was unavailable due to concerns among hoteliers regarding confidentiality, according to CHA and CTO officials.

According to the entities involved, STR's reputation for reliability, objectivity and confidentiality means that the CHA and the CTO will receive "blended" information that will indicate trends and allow for more precise forecasting for the region and for individual destinations.

The organizations, however, will not have access to information regarding the performance of any individual property.

Peter Odle, CHA president, described Smith Travel Research as "the best and most respected source of hotel performance information. We are delighted to form this alliance so that we may provide our member hotels with the data they need to improve their business outlook."

Vincent Vanderpool-Wallace, CTO's secretary general, said that much of the information "will be used to guide governments in their decision-making once they know that the data is coming from an independent and credible source such as STR."

He also pointed out that both the CTO and the CHA leaped into the technology age in tourism "without taking full advantage of the information age. We see this initiative as the beginning of our correcting this handicap."

The lodging statistics compiled by STR will create access to comprehensive data on an unprecedented level, according to Duane Wilson, vice president of Smith Travel Research.

Hotel associations across the Caribbean region will assist in identifying sample properties that will be representative of each destination, according to Alec Sanguinetti, CHA's director general and CEO.

Participating properties will receive a monthly copy of STR's Star Report during their first year of participation. The report enables a property to compare its performance in several areas against a group of five or more properties.

To contact the reporter who wrote this article, send e-mail to Gay Nagle Myers at [email protected].

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