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.
Experience a big-city hotel stay that doesn’t feel like your typical urban visit at Chicago’s Claridge House, nestled in the sought-after Gold Coast neighborhood. The hotel’s sophisticated décor and serene residential ambience foster the atmosphere of an oasis amid the hustle and bustle of a busy metropolis.
FOR THOSE OF US PASSIONATE about wellness pursuits and who feel most at peace close to the sea, there’s nothing quite like the synergy offered by a floating spa integrated into the setting of a luxurious cruise ship. I’m sailing through the Mediterranean from Rome to Barcelona, discovering along the way that the Crystal Life Spa & Beauty Salon on board the Crystal Serenity provides not only the element of high-end indulgence but also the cruise line’s signature commitment to attention and service.
CONSIDERING THAT JUST A LITTLE more than a century ago — 1910, to be exact — Miami’s population was only about 5,400 people, it’s easy to see why this South Florida hot spot has long been considered a boomtown. And the evolution continues to impress as the city gears up to welcome an array of new services, amenities and experiences.
Thessaloniki is the second-largest city of Greece and the most important center of the area. Built near the sea, elegant and refined, the Greek “Lady of the North” is a modern, vivacious city that welcomes visitors eager to learn about its history and culture, and at the same time have fun, relax, go shopping or simply explore the cityscape by the sea.
Ethiopian Airlines added a daily non-stop between Brussels (BRU) and Addis Ababa (ADD). The carrier previously made stopovers in Vienna (VIE) three days a week, increasing the journey time from seven hours to nine.
Welcome to Rhodes, a medieval treasure beautifully preserved throughout the centuries. Rhodes is the capital of the Dodecanese, an island ideal not only for those who want to relax, but also for those looking for an action-packed holiday! With its bright green hills, rich green valleys and uninterrupted line of golden beaches, Rhodes is truly a blessed place. “The sun island” has more sunshiny days and milder temperatures throughout the year than any other location in Greece. It is, after all, one of the country’s easternmost places and among the first to welcome summer on its impressive beaches. Add in the excellent facilities for tourism, the island’s special blend of cosmopolitan and traditional, and numerous cultural and archaeological sites, the most important being the Medieval (Old) Town, a UNESCO World Heritage site, and you’ve got the perfect holiday destination. While on Rhodes, don’t miss a daytrip to nearby Sými. An island of sponge divers and seamen, Sými used to have 30,000 inhabitants before the Second World War and was the richest island in the Dodecanese, despite its small size. Today, Sými attracts many visitors thanks to its beautifully preserved Neo-Classical buildings and the famous Archangel Michael monastery at Panormitis.
Last month, British Airways announced plans to offset carbon emissions from all its flights within the United Kingdom. The initiative begins next year and carbon emissions are offset via the United Nations’ carbon offsetting scheme, which invests in carbon reduction projects around the world, such as reforestation and rainforest protection.