Tuesday, April 13, 2021

Celebrity Ghost Kitchens: Are They Here to Stay?

Celebrity chefs have been slow to warm up to the use of ghost kitchens but Rachel Ray to Go and

Rick Bayless’ Tortas Frontera in Chicago are two who’ve endorsed the concept.  Easily the chef who

has most embraced using ghost kitchens is Guy Fieri who has amassed an amazing 173

FlavorTown Kitchens in 33 states and the District of Columbia.  These are three celebrity chefs we know from television and the media.

But during the pandemic, the term “celebrity chef” has taken on a whole new meaning: non-chef celebrities

who are also getting in on the ghost kitchen act.  In doing so, they are creating greater awareness

of their own brands and include rapper Wiz Khalifa, YouTuber entrepreneur/philanthropist MrBeast,

hip-hop artist Tyga, DJ Pauly D, actor/television presenter Mario Lopez, and singer/songwriter Mariah Carey.Interestingly, they are all part of the entertainment business, an industry that’s also been hard hit by the pandemic.

Who knows how celebrity ghost kitchens will fare as restaurants open up for indoor dining again, but it’s

clear that, at the very least, Chef Fieri will have a wealth of country-wide market research to help him if he

decides to open more brick and mortar restaurants.  When we emerge from the pandemic, let’s hope that

celebrities can go back to being celebrities, and true celebrity chefs can be chefs!

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Tuesday, April 6, 2021

Keep Your Customers and Staff Safe with Air Purification Systems

As we continue to navigate our way through these times, it’s critical to keep our businesses thriving, and our people

safe. Keeping spaces clean is essential to the comfort and safety of guests and staff. Hotels and restaurants are

meant to feel welcoming, safe and clean, and going the extra mile to make sure that is achieved is necessary.

Cleaning when guests and customers leave is great. But how can we go above and beyond to ensure we are giving

those in the hotel or restaurant the best experience, to feel like they are in good hands and in a clean environment

throughout their visit?

Air purification systems.

With the pandemic comes the need for better technology. Air purification systems such as those from Vollara and

RFG Environmental Group  work to clean the air and filter out contaminants on surfaces and in the air. This includes killing viruses like Sars and Covid. 

So why invest in something that cleans when you can clean too?

Well, for starters these remove germs from the air and surfaces while they are on, and while guests are actively around

the hotel and restaurant. This allows the times that you cannot clean (while they are eating, swimming, etc.), to be

safer because the air is actively being cleaned. 

Second, air purifiers come in all different sizes and prices, so you can find one from any company that will fit your

price range, that specifically kill viruses like Sars and COVID-19. 

Having an air purification system also puts you ahead of other hotels and restaurants that do not.  When guests

are looking for a hotel that is going to put them first, you need to stand out. When customers are choosing

where to eat for the night, you need to stand out. Cleaning and bleaching everything will not put you at an advantage

from everyone else, but having this will. In these times, we need to win guests over to keep the business up and running. 

Not only does this appeal to guests and customers, but it allows your staff to feel more comfortable. Having a device

that will go the extra mile for safety is necessary.  These air purification devices can be put in lounge rooms, guest

rooms, bathrooms, restaurants, you name it. 

In this ongoing search to be the best, taking into consideration the needs of everyone is number one. Guests,

customers and staff see their safety before they see the outdoor pool area, or the best food. Putting in the effort

to provide the cleanest overall experience will make everyone feel relaxed and happy. 

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Tuesday, March 30, 2021

One Step at a Time: Reducing Your Carbon Footprint

Sustainability awareness and environmental standards have been progressing as our planet has been feeling the

heightening effects of pollutants for centuries. Restaurants contribute to this offset in more ways than one: water

usage, energy usage, food waste, plastic usage, pollution, and garbage waste are the top contributors. As we

continue damaging our planet, the earth's health will continue to feel it to the extremes.

So how can restaurants stop contributing to this spiral and lower their carbon footprint? 

Reduce the amount of plastic that you use by replacing plastic with compostable and recyclable alternatives

(e.g. paper straws, paper bags, compostable food containers). 

Considering the large amounts of energy used by restaurants, switching to renewable energy sources, such as

wind, solar, geothermal, or hydroelectric, would be very good. Most electricity suppliers offer the option to source

your electricity from alternative sources. Wind energy has the best reputation when considering the effects on

the environment. Not only would wind energy reduce a restaurant's carbon footprint immensely, but it is also abundant,

infinite, and affordable. This makes it a feasible and an extensive alternative to fossil fuels. If the environment's

benefit is not reason enough to make this change, you can also acknowledge the low operating costs. Ask your electric

company about it. It’s simple.

Food waste is another leading cause of the climate crisis. Food is a substance that cannot be reused or kept for a

significant amount of time: it will go bad. This creates obstacles for the environment, both in throwing out the food

and the overwhelming demand for producing more. There are other ways around throwing out tons of food every

night when restaurants close, or even throughout the day when consumers do not eat the entire portion. 

Click here to read more about how to reduce food waste.  

Restaurants should consider composting. Compositing saves water by helping the soil hold moisture, as well as

reducing water runoff. It benefits the environment by recycling resources while minimizing what is sent to landfills.

A restaurant could also think about having its own garden and using that food for cooking. This is a much more

sustainable and healthy way of distributing food to consumers. If a restaurant does not have the land space for

either of these suggestions, restaurants can donate leftover food to local food shelters and also contract

with composting companies that will pickup your food waste and compost it for you. Throwing out ingredients

and pre-made meals that won't be served the next day is a waste of money and draining for the planet to keep up

with.  Click here to read more.

Overall, small changes like those I have suggested are a small step towards a healthier future for our planet. Not

only will your restaurant be minimizing its carbon footprint, but will be erasing its previous ones.

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Tuesday, March 23, 2021

Low Cost Technology Will Boost Your Hotel’s Profits

The hotel industry has suffered tremendously during the COVID pandemic, so it is important to use every resource

you can to keep your hotel thriving. With the help of technology, you can attract new customers, reduce costs, save

time, and keep your business running smoothly and efficiently, while simultaneously enhancing guest satisfaction.

Technology moves fast, and customers expect you to, also. 

So how can you save all of this money and time with the help of technology?

Answer:  Hospitality Apps and online services. 

That’s right! There are low cost apps out there that can help manage your equipment and vendors, can track inventory,

manage your facilities, engage your customers, find you the best prices, and so much more. 

Take Source1 Purchasing  for example, a Group Purchasing Organization (GPO) that negotiates better terms directly

with manufacturers on rebates and discounts on behalf of their 10,000 hotel customers. Membership is free, they do

all the work, and you get the discounted pricing and collect the rebate checks. 

What about services for your hotel’s restaurant? There are apps for that as well. 

Online services like Upserve provide payment processing, point of sale and valuable insights to boost margins, while

a low cost app like TableBoost helps you save money on equipment repairs, maintenance and purchasing, and resolving

guest issues quickly.

There are so many ways to cut costs through technology, whether that’s using an app to get the best price or an online service to automate processes that are currently done manually. 

Save your time and money and look to the new world of technology, it is there to help. 

Check out some great apps and services for hotels and restaurants on the TableBoost Marketplace.

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Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Why Go it Alone? Consider Joining a GPO for Hotels

Do you keep using the same suppliers year after year for upgrades like furnishings and home goods? 

Do you take the time to get multiple price quotes on equipment, systems, kitchen items, appliances and

services?  Do you sometimes feel powerless when trying to negotiate prices with suppliers and

service providers?

Well, there’s good news; you don’t have to go it alone.  Consider joining a Group Purchasing Organization

(GPO).  A GPO leverages the collective buying power of its members to negotiate deep discounts and

rebates with thousands of suppliers and retailers.  They are generally focused on particular industries

and there are lots of Hospitality GPOs to choose from.  Some require purchasing a membership, but a

few are free.

In addition to big financial savings, there are other benefits to joining a GPO:

  • It will save time so you can focus on your core business

  • Most have specialists who track the latest industry trends

  • Most provide free cost analysis by category

  • Many offer multi-year price protection

If it’s time that you looked into joining a GPO, TableBoost has partnered with Source1, one of the best

Hospitality GPOs in the country — check out Source1 in the TableBoost Marketplace.

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Tuesday, March 9, 2021

A New Type of Ghost Resides in Your Hotel Kitchen

Is your hotel struggling due to the COVID-19 pandemic and you have an empty kitchen?

Maybe it’s time to invest in renting out your hotel kitchen; become a ghost kitchen. 

A ghost kitchen is a food preparation and cooking facility that is rented to food service businesses that don’t need

a retail location; they just need the kitchen. These businesses focus on deliveries directly to the customer,

so don’t need a dining area. 

The ghost kitchen industry has been growing rapidly in the last year, it is predicted that it will be worth $1 trillion

dollars in the next 10 years by Euromonitor, a market research firm in London. Ghost kitchens in hotels

were happening long before the pandemic, but are still not common.

Ghost kitchens can also change menus rapidly, and not feel the constrictions of a specific menu format due to

being in a restaurant. Plus they can focus on delivery friendly food options like salads, and sandwiches. 

“It supplements the existing menu options at the hotel, and extends well-respected restaurant brands as

partners in the hotel.”said Frederick DeMicco, executive director of Northern Arizona University’s School of Hotel

and Restaurant Management. Click here to read the full article.

It may be time to look into ghost kitchens near you to partner with. You provide your kitchen and equipment

for them to prep and cook, while you gain revenue leveraging assets that are currently idle or under-utilized. 

Sounds like a Win Win.

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Tuesday, March 2, 2021

Restaurant Subscriptions - Great Concept & Provides Guaranteed Revenue

In these times of COVID those in the restaurant industry are being forced to get creative. Outdoor dining is tough in

the cold weather, and takeout revenue is far from guaranteed when you’re competing with hundreds of other local

restaurants who are all trying to grow their takeout business.

So, what options are there?  How can you differentiate?

How about the restaurant subscription! The newest creative way to guarantee hot meals for the week for your best

customers, and predictable income for your restaurant. 

So what is a restaurant subscription? 

Restaurant subscriptions are when the customer buys from the restaurant up front at a discount, and they get

meals delivered weekly. Delivery time and what is in the box varies based on the customer’s preferences

(e.g. the same two meals and appetizer each week, plus a seafood special).

There are many reasons why the restaurant subscription is a good switch up from the usual takeout order, but

here are just a few:

  1. Guaranteed income for the restaurant because your customers pay upfront for all of their meals. 

  2. It offers customers diverse, delicious meals without the cooking time for busy weeknights, or date night. 

  3. Saves customers the time and effort of ordering every night as they would with takeout. 

  4. According to Restolabs, “the revenue generated by the subscriptions are way more than a single business transaction”.

The subscription creates a sense of stability for the business and the customer. Keep it in mind the next time you’re

brainstorming new ideas for your business. 




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