Michael was formally trained as a chef in NYC’s “Little Italy” in the 1960’s and resided in the Gramercy Park Hotel where he worked in exchange for a room in the early 1970’s. The concept of Private Hotel + Pure Food started after having lived in Haiti in the later part of the 1970’s. Michael’s friend, French entrepreneur Olivier Coquelin, opened Habitation Leclerc in Martissant, Haiti where it became renowned as one of the best international resorts in the world, catering particularly to the affluent jet set crowd and patrons that included members of the Kennedy family, European nobility, and famous rock stars such as Mick Jagger. Bringing memories of the time he spent there back to America, Michael has been working on this extraordinary Ithaca, NY property for the past 13 years, taking the ambience of Habitation Leclerc and adding his own special twist, such as museum quality treasures from his personal world adventures and travels (i.e., dinosaur skeletons, meteorites, huge mineral specimens, fossils, historical and pre-historical artifacts and surrealist art). Finally in 2012 Michael opened the doors where the guest is king, the “Gold Standard of Hospitality” is practiced to a “T”; the rest is hotelier history.
innRoad today announced the two, peer-selected, winners of the first annual 2015 NAIHA’s (North American Independent Hotel Awards), including 2015 North American Independent Hotel of the Year and 2015 North American Independent Hotelier of the Year Awards. These two winners exemplify the passion and commitment it takes to provide great guest experiences.
The 2015 North American Independent Hotel Award winner is the Abbington Green Bed & Breakfast Inn. This property is recognized by its guests for providing exceptional guest experiences. Guests love their 5pm social hour, the meticulously kept property, and extra attention paid to every detail. Owners Nick and Steve go above and beyond when it comes to providing great service.
“After decades of work in the retail industry, becoming a hotelier has fulfilled a lifelong dream of mine,” stated Nick Poulos, owner of Abbington Green. “I feel so lucky to be awarded for doing something that I love. It’s the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done and I look forward to many more years of service to our guests.”
The 2015 North American Independent Hotelier Award winner is Rachelle Allen at the Hotel UMass. Rachelle is recognized by her peers for being hard working, caring and committed to providing great guest experiences each and every day. She consistently goes above and beyond in her attention to guests and her mentor-ship of young student employees.
“This award for Rachelle is well-deserved and highlights what 20 years of working in an independent hotel means. Her dedication to the guests and staff is what makes Hotel UMass the destination of choice in Western Massachusetts. The University, the current staff, and the many graduates she has mentored are all very proud of her,” stated Tom Sears, Director of Hospitality at UMass Hotel and Campus Center.
“We are thrilled to announce these two winners. The Abbington Green and Rachelle at Hotel UMass are perfect examples of what makes us proud to be part of the hospitality industry,” stated Frederik Rasmussen CEO at innRoad. “Their level of commitment to their guests and the success of their businesses make a direct impact in their local economies, and we are proud to promote their success. At innRoad we understand the level of commitment required to provide excellent experiences for your guests, and we strive to provide that same level of service to our clients.”
These two winners were voted on from a group of finalists including:
Kenny’s Tipperary Inn
Jeff Hunter of Harborview Inn
Michael Casper of Private Hotel + Pure Food
Marnie Guillion of Honey Creek Resort
Madeline Pickens of Mustang Monument
Tim Columbus of Birchwood Inn
About the 2015 North American Independent Hotel Awards:
For the 2015 North American Independent Hotel Awards, over 100 submissions were made during the month of December. The list of finalists was compiled based on submissions, and online guest reviews. Over 1,000 votes were cast for the four properties and six hoteliers during the open voting period. Winners were selected based on popular vote.
Over 600 North American independent hotels trust innRoad to provide hotel management software that increases occupancy, saves them time, and allows hoteliers to focus on creating great guest experiences. innRoad is the best hotel management system developed to meet the needs of independent hoteliers. The cloud based, single-platform software includes a PMS, commission-free booking engine, direct OTA connections and free 24×7 support.