Hotels Assist Business Travelers

Tulsa’s hotels are striving to excel in an increasingly competitive market. That means the envelope is pushed where technology is concerned, but at an evolutionary pace.
The first hotel “business center,” one of today’s hottest buzzwords in the hospitality industry, was nothing more than the front desk.
But, for that level of service, the business traveler could expect to pay a premium for supplies, labor — and don’t forget the tip.
The Tulsa Business Journal called several hotels to see what they called a “business center” could offer.
All the ones contacted indicated that they “try to be business friendly.”
Most offered either an Internet connection or wireless Internet access in the guest rooms.
At the Southern Hills Marriott, the business center is located in the lobby and features a computer, printer and copier, said Leigh Murray, director of Sales and Marketing.
“It includes the basic items that anyone can use,” she said. “It won’t compete with Kinkos, but it is functional.”
Another Marriott property, the ExecuStay Corporate Apartments facilities at Memorial Creek, 9602 S. Memorial Drive; Mansions at Riverside, 2805 E. 97th Court; and the Waterford, 5181 S. Harvard Ave. all boast business centers.
The business center at each property features a computer, printer, Internet, copier and a fax machine, said Robert Thompson, Execustay manager.
“Everyone brings some form of computer technology to remain in touch,” Thompson said.
Laptops are essential to most travelers, he said.
“Of course, we have the OTR (over-the-road) travelers that are bringing in full-sized computers,” Thompson said. “If they are not flying, they are bringing everything they’ve got.”
Hotels around Tulsa offer a variety of business services, even in the absence of physical business centers.
The hotel industry is entering a fully automated era, allowing guests to connect to home or the office through a diverse set of products and services.
Experts see the time when technological innovations reduce business travel. But, until then, business travelers will have to lug laptops out of an overhead luggage bin, up the ramp and onto a desk in a hotel room or, if the traveler is lucky, a snazzy hotel business center. ?



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