Ever wanted to learn more about the hotel industry? I recently had the chance to interview Kole Siefken, general manager of The DoubleTree by Hilton Modesto. Read our Q and A session to find out more about all of the hard work that goes on behind the scenes.
- Q: You currently serve as the General Manager of the DoubleTree by Hilton Modesto. Give us a brief overview of your hotel.
A: My name is Kole Siefken and I am the General Manager. The DoubleTree by Hilton Modesto is a beautiful high rise hotel that includes 260 rooms and suites and 39,000 square feet of flexible meeting space as it is connected to the Convention Center. Located in the heart of downtown Modesto, CA, the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel Modesto offers you a warm welcome with a famous DoubleTree cookie and a great place to stay while you explore Modesto and the local area. Stay busy and keep in touch in the 24-hour business center. Complimentary high-speed internet access lets you get work done in your bright and airy California-style guest room or suite.
Soak up the sun as you take a swim in the outdoor pool (open 6AM-10PM). Keep up your exercise routine with a visit to the fully equipped 24-hour fitness center. Refuel and catch up with friends in Maxi’s restaurant. Choose from a range of fresh California cuisine, or start your day off in style with a cooked-to-order full American breakfast. With 25 flexible meeting rooms, from intimate boardrooms to grand ballrooms, this hotel is an ideal choice as a Modesto meeting venue, or the perfect setting for your important celebration.
We also feature a Salon and Spa called Erin Milan. All Erin Milan services are carefully executed to give you the best spa experience possible. Begin your haircut with a stress relieving scalp massage. Receive a relaxing facial customized for your specific needs! A variety of massage services can be tailored to meet your individual requests. Prepare for a special occasion with manicure, pedicure, and makeup services. Looking to make a day of it? Erin Milan Salon & Spa offers excellent packages to provide you with the ultimate relaxation.
- Q: What are your duties as GM?
A: Under the direction of an Area Operations Manager, I am responsible to manage property operations on a day to day basis of a single property to assure optimum performance and continual improvement in the five Key Result Areas (guest service, employees, sales/marketing, property appearance, and profit/financial control. I coordinate, direct and manage the staff and everyday hotel operations to achieve profitability, guest satisfaction and efficiency while maintaining standards set by the company assuring 100% guest satisfaction.
- Q: What can guests expect from a stay at the DoubleTree by Hilton?
A: THE LITTLE THINGS MEAN EVERYTHING.
At DoubleTree by Hilton™ hotels, every little thing we do adds up to Create A Rewarding Experience for our guests (CARE). Our hospitality starts with a warm chocolate chip cookie upon arrival and continues through the award-winning Hilton HHonors® guest reward program, our Sweet Dreams® by DoubleTree Sleep Experience and our industry-recognized Culture of CARE.
Whatever your hotel travel plans, whether looking for a business hotel or family vacation resort, stay with us and you’ll see how we strive to create a truly rewarding hotel experience for our guests.
- Q: What forms of technology are essential to your success in the Hospitality business?
A: Technology plays an important role in the hospitality industry. Our guests benefit from advances in communication, reservations and guest services systems. Technology allows continuous communication and streamlines the guest experience, from reservation to checkout. Some of the technologies we utilize heavily are internet, reservation software, Apps where through our HHonors loyalty App it allows guests to check-in and actually choose their specific room . In the near future guests staying at Hilton properties will also be able to gain access to their hotel rooms using their smart phones.
- Q: How do you build customer loyalty in an industry so competitive?
A: At Hilton, we keep our 25-year-old HHonors program fresh and thriving by continuously refining its messaging and its offers. Through continued customer data collection and measurement, we know that each of its HHonors members, who are frequent guests, join the program for a unique reason. There are distinct groups of customers whose motivations and preferences vary significantly.
We use these insights to deliver personalized guest messages based on individual purchase preferences. It engages members by asking how they prefer to earn and use rewards and their travel-related interests, theater or health. With this information, we can personalize the hotel experience of each HHonors’ member.
In turn, the guest’s spending history at the hotel – from the number of stays to rewards earned to room preferences – is stored in a central database and can be retrieved at the front desk during check-in. The desk clerk can see, for instance, that the guest used Wi-Fi and upgraded his room on his last visit, prompting an opportunity to upsell to a suite.
- Q: When people think of hotel conference facilities, they think large corporate events/retreats. Does your hotel service a lot of events and conventions?
A: At the DoubleTree by Hilton Modesto we make planning and hosting your meeting easy. We feature 39,000 square feet of flexible meeting space. Whether you are organizing a conference, sales presentation, corporate retreat, theme party, Wedding or formal affair, we can accommodate them all. We have expertise to provide the perfect setting for any occasion. Our meeting services include in-house audio/visual services, first-class catering facilities and dedicated, experienced personnel to ensure your event is a success from start to finish.