Name: Tom Faust
Title: Vice president, sales
Company, city: Omni Hotels & Resorts; Dallas, Texas
Number of employees: 21,000
Recent project: Finalizing our Omni Meetings University, an online meeting planner educational portal modeled after our successful Omni Travel Agent University
First job: A bellman at Stouffer’s Riverfront Towers in St. Louis
Little-known fact about you: While my weeks are filled with creating memorable experiences for guests, on weekends I unwind with yoga.
Essential business philosophy: Say “Yes!” to new opportunities to help you learn and grow. I live by that philosophy and continue to do more than is expected; the rewards always follow.
Best way to keep a competitive edge: By maintaining a healthy body and mind through yoga, I replace negativity with positivity and an eagerness to succeed. I also read daily trade news and participate in professional development.
Yardstick of success: Omni aims to exceed guest expectations, inspire and reward our associates and provide superior financial results to those who entrust us with managing their assets. Developing our team, mentoring individuals and growing market share are vital to our success.
Tom Faust as a Traveler
What is the most important item you take when traveling? My Omni Select Guest loyalty card, offering complimentary in-room WiFi, bottled water, a morning beverage, a shoe shine and garment pressing
How do you spend your time on board? I use the quiet time to read and complete projects with minimal distraction.
What is your favorite restaurant in the world? Radosta’s Restaurant & Deli near New Orleans
What is your favorite destination in the world? I have traveled the world, but Dallas, where I work and live, is still my favorite city.
About Omni Hotels & Resorts
What defines an Omni property? Does Omni plan to roll out amenities designed to appeal to the growing millennial market?
We are a global four-diamond brand offering unique properties that provide exceptional guest experiences. Since our design, décor, food and beverage, services and amenities reflect the destination, no two Omni properties are alike.
While Omni offers amenities that interest younger guests, many of our younger business travelers were exposed to Omni through their employer. Omni’s tradition for creating authentic, memorable experiences and providing exceptional customer service adds value for all travelers; however, we are seeing a generational shift in the needs of business travelers as millennials take on more responsibility in the workforce. New technology, complimentary in-room and lobby WiFi and local experiences play an important role in today’s events. Social interaction is important to this group, so meetings are more collaborative and casual.
How do Omni hotels cater to business travelers? What challenges does Omni face in strengthening brand awareness among business travelers?
No two travelers are alike, and the purpose of travel varies just as much, so we offer a variety of properties to meet the needs of group, business and leisure guests. In the past two years, we’ve added resorts, convention center hotels and city centers, providing access to new desirable locations and robust signature properties in North America. Through the Omni Select Guest loyalty program, business travelers receive complimentary WiFi and other benefits. We offer mobile capabilities for booking and checking in and were one of the first hotel groups to add its loyalty program to Google Wallet.
Our challenge is finding the right communication channels. The way guests receive messages changes frequently as traditional and social media evolve. Our website remains our most useful and popular channel for guests interested in culinary updates, special packages, photos or details about a property and destination.
Industry watchers suggest travel loyalty programs are losing value. How does Omni’s Select Guest program maintain and grow its membership?
Our members enjoy everything from special complimentary perks to free nights at any Omni property. They are automatically entered into the Global Hotel Alliance Discovery, offering benefits at more than 450 luxury hotels and resorts in 62 countries. Guests receive complimentary WiFi in guestrooms instantly when signing up for our free-to-join loyalty program, so our new member numbers grow daily.
Though air travel slowed as airports temporarily closed and borders shuttered to stifle the spread of coronavirus, the airline industry — led by oneworld alliance member airlines — enacted enhanced protective measures to reduce risk and protect passengers.
The Airline Passenger Experience Association and SimpliFlying recognized United Airlines for providing a hospital-grade standard of cleanliness and safety during travel. Among the four largest U.S. carriers, United is the first to receive Diamond Certification, the highest in the new APEX Health Safety audit powered by SimpiliFlying.
A couple of my friends and I decided to rent a house in the Camelback Mountain area of Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains for New Year’s Eve. To find the perfect place, we used Vrbo.com; there were a bunch of properties to choose from, but, in the end, we decided to rent a place in The Village at Camelback.
The International Air Transport Association and Etihad Airways partnered to launch the IATA Travel Pass for passengers on the Gulf carrier. The IATA Travel Pass is a mobile app that helps passengers manage travel in line with government requirements for COVID-19 tests or vaccines. It will be initially offered on select Etihad flights from Abu Dhabi in early 2021, with plans to extend the offer if successful.
Are you looking for a truly unique travel experience and considering a new vehicle? The Volvo Overseas Delivery Program is the perfect solution to create your own refined adventure of a lifetime. You can custom order your new Volvo, tailored to fit your needs and desires. They will fly you to Sweden to pick up your Volvo so you can drive and explore Scandinavia and Europe on your terms for up to two weeks.
Madeline Hotel & Residences, Auberge Resorts Collection recently debuted a complete redesign, now standing as a luxurious, modern mountain resort in Telluride, Colorado. At 10,540 feet, the ski-in/ski-out retreat boasts new social spaces, a refreshed lobby, a new boutique, a collection of new guest experiences and amenities, and wellness offerings. Additionally, Madeline features a collaboration with Olympian Gus Kenworthy, who helped create the hotel’s Recovery Ski Lounge.