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Here's The Latest Edition on The Waikiki Edition

Where: 1777 Ala Moana Blvd [map], Honolulu, HI, United States, 96815
September 1, 2011 at 7:42 PM | by | Comments (3)

The takeover and the takeback of the Waikiki Editionis moving so fast that we're finding it hard to keep up with all the developments especially as we're attending a work conference in Vegas (for realz! and we are actually sober!) So we're sitting here trying to recap all that we can as we get the time. Fortunately, it's only 12:30pm in Hawaii right now so we're not too late!

First off BANKRUPTCY! M Waikiki LLC has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection today. No doubt they blame Marriott for their financial woes but the filing also prevents Marriott from filing any countersuits against them. Tricky! Marriott, meanwhile, has called the move "desperate." As it stands right now, the hotel is now an Aqua Hotels and Resorts-run place called The Modern Honolulu. But given the craziness of the past few days, who knows how long that will last.

Next up, another passionate Edition employee has written into HotelChatter saying why they did not sign up as an employee for the "unclassy" Aqua.

I, also, am an hourly employee who has decided not to switch over with The Aqua Management team. I cannot, and will not, work for a company that would do something of this nature in such an unclassy and unprofessional manner.

I have now seen how the Aqua management's commitment to ensuring all employees jobs will be given back and benefits/wages will be the same, is false.

I have called the hotel twice, just to see if I still have a job. I was ensured TWICE that they would call me back with more information. I have not received a phone call and am also not let on property due to "suspicion" of being loyal to EDITION.

I have never, ever in my entire career worked with a group of people who have such a passion for what we have built. The past year, I have not only gotten a job with EDITION, but I have become part of a tight-knit family that all have the same goal: Dedication to authenticity in design and gracious, sophisticated, and personalized service.

We take care of one another. We will continue to take care of our guests, because that is what we have been taught by EDITION. We love each other. We are ECSTATIC about what this brand has turned us into as individuals. NOBODY can take our heart and our soul and mar what we truly believe in.

This employee also passed along another comment from a former Edition employee, who isn't afraid to tell it like is. In their mind, the hotel is probably being run by a bunch of grommits now.

"You will NEVER EVER find the impassioned employees who are emotionally engaged in YOUR brand...Instead, what you will find is a reflection of your superficiality. So go ahead and take down our sign, cut off our towel tags, and cover up our shower gel with your tacky labels...we wouldn't want the EDITION name associated with it anyway.

In fact, your employees should wear their own uniforms. That way, when guests are waiting at the drive while the "valet" finishes up his phone call on his cell phone, or gets sent to the corner of the block to wait for a cab, they won't confuse your service standards with ours and the legacy The Waikiki EDITION left behind."

Do you work at Edition Waikiki/The Modern Honolulu as well? Wanna tell us more of what it's like behind the front lines? Let us know! Anonymity assured!

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Drama....

I always wonder why any investment group would have a branded hotel these days... any increase in revPAR is most likely swallowed by the egregious costs associated with being a brand, which I'd guess would add around 30-50% over the cost of operating a hotel without a brand.  Let's start with application fees, marketing fees, sales fees, etc., and right there you're at 15-20%... then you're required to buy through their channels... another 10-30% above what an independent property pays for anything from printed materials to shampoo... then you have the technology package, an excellent PMS like Innquest's roommaster is under $10K instead of $100-200K for a brand's tech package.... then there are the PIPs... then the printed materials... then the loyalty programs... the departmental management requirements, etc., etc.  I understand why people like brand consistency, but will always and forever wonder why people support brands when traveling... after all, the pure essence of travel is to experience things that you would not experience at home.  Then again, I'm still perplexed at why people continue to book through means other than directly with a property... do they not realize that those other channels take a good chunk of money as well?

Drama Too

My point exactly.  This may read as insensitive ownership but  they too got caught up in the "cover of the book" as presented by the brand.  Those brand charges are all above and beyond available quality alternatives.  Charges that benefit the brand not the owner or customer and are now the cause of distress for staff.

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