Best Western reaches milestone

Multi-Systems Inc. (MSI) recently completed its 100th two-way interface installation from the MSI WinPM property-management system to the Best Western CRS.

“We’d like to thank MSI for its ongoing efforts and support of our two-way initiative,” said Denise Heinrichs, director of property systems for Best Western International. “Because of valued partnerships like the one between Best Western and MSI, we know we are on the right path to reaching our goal for complete systemwide connectivity by December 2009.”

MSI was the first Best Western PMS provider to implement and install the two-way CRS interface based on the Open Travel Alliance standards. Fifty-two additional properties are in the queue to install the two-way interface.

“MSI has a lot to be proud of, especially our ongoing relationship with Best Western,” said Tim Tiller, MSI Chief Operating Officer. “Hitting this 100th property milestone substantiates that Best Western members rely on MSI to streamline their daily operations and enhance inventory features and availability to be sold by the Best Western CRS. MSI is dedicated to making certain that Best Western members increase their bottom lines by improving occupancy and RevPAR through WinPM’s state-of-the-art technology.”

Best Western’s Gold Crown Club loyalty program, rates, inventory management, and travel agent information are a valued component of this technology integration.

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First time automation

The Best Western Harbour Pointe in St. Ignace, Mich., recently installed WinPM and the two-way Best Western interface. Prior to this installation, the seasonal hotel—located on the shores of Lake Huron overlooking

Mackinac Island and open from April through October—maintained a strictly manual operation.

“We operated for 20 years with pencil and paper,” said General Manager Ronn Farr. “Migrating to MSI was a much bigger decision for us than just the two-way mandate. The No. 1 challenge we faced was the inability to capture guest data when operating in a manual environment. Therefore, we had to change with the times.”

Farr said his staff needed the ability to have all room types available to the public in real time. With MSI, he said that is accomplished. The pricing structure of WinPM also was very attractive to management.

“We were extremely happy with the MSI installation and exceptionally happy with Char Gross, MSI senior sales executive and our liaison,” he said. “The bottom line is that MSI is a well-rounded company. Let’s face it, technology companies are here today gone tomorrow. MSI will never fall into that category. As our property grows and the needs of our guests change, MSI will grow and adapt to meet our needs.”

Farr said being a seasonal property has its advantages.

“I like the fact that we have six months to learn the WinPM system thoroughly until we reopen in April,” he said. “Thanks MSI for not just ‘hearing’ what we needed, but for truly ‘listening’ and delivering upon our needs.”

NovaPlus in Certification Testing

Teresa Galler, MSI vice president of operations, said development of the two-way interface between MSI’s NovaPlus property-management system (featuring Version 3.0 software upgrade) and the Best Western central-reservation system is completed and is presently at the Best Western Lab for certification.

The first round of certification testing—which focuses on interface messages, the business logic involved in making the systems work together, and evaluates the training and user materials that will be used for the sites—is expected to be complete on December 8, with any changes required to be completed by December 14. The second round of certification testing is anticipated to be complete by December 27, with Beta deployment soon after. The Best Western NovaPlus Two-Way interface is expected to roll out first quarter 2007.

Best Western properties that would like to assume a leadership position within the Best Western system and outpace the competition in the marketplace, should partner with MSI today by installing this technology.
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