Agdahoe Heights

How a 5-Star Hotel Migrated their PMS During the Pandemic

The Aghadoe Heights Hotel & Spa is a luxury five-star Irish hotel, overlooking the spectacular world-famous Lakes of Killarney and the magnificent MacGillycuddy’s Reeks mountain range. Comprising of 74 elegant bedrooms and suites, Aghadoe offers stunning panoramic views, some with private balconies too.

Windward Management, a leading hospitality management company, managing and operating hotels on behalf of their owners decided to further their existing relationship with Hoist Group and install HotSoft PMS in Aghadoe Heights in 2020. With 11 of their hotels already leveraging Hoist Group’s technology, the partnership at Aghadoe was only a natural extension.

Aghadoe Heights

Requirements

Aghadoe Heights required a Property Management Solution (PMS) that would interface with existing systems such as Reservations (Booking Engine, Global Distribution System, Channel Manager & Rate Management software), Point of Sale (for cross charges), Spa, Golf & Leisure Centre systems, telephone, credit cards, door locks, Building Management Software (BMS) and Finance e.g., Sage.

Windward Management has been using various PMS systems across their property portfolio and has always had positive feedback on Hoist Group’s HotSoft PMS in terms of usability, stability, reporting, and support.

Commenting on their experience of using HotSoft PMS, Stephen Williams, Director of Sales & Marketing at Windward Management said: “From a customer perspective, HotSoft PMS can support complex reservation arrangements such as multiple room types and configurations (Children, Cots and Age Levels), Food & Beverage, Spa, Golf and add-ons which is not always possible with other systems.
From a Capex perspective, regular updates ensure that the lifespan of HotSoft PMS is extended thus negating further substantial replacement costs in the future.

 

HotSoft PMS

HotSoft PMS

Rate Manager

Rate Manager

 

Challenges

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Windward Management updated PMS systems in some of their hotels, including the upgrading of HotSoft PMS to its latest version. Both Windward and Hoist Group have a culture of safety and transparency and did not experience any major installation issues despite the pandemic.

Stephen remarked: “The Hoist team was very aware of our safety protocols and adhered to them at all times. The team worked hard to provide the support required to facilitate remote working and updated reporting requirements for Managers and Owners. This allowed Aghadoe’s team to continue regular operations efficiently and safely, enabling them to be reactive to the fluctuating booking patterns.”

Stephen complimented the team saying:

Support from Hoist Group in Kilkenny has been terrific. We would view our relationship with Hoist as a partnership, which has gone from strength to strength over the years. They has been very supportive throughout the development of Windward and excelled during the lock-down at setting up our teams for remote working. We place high value on the support delivered by Hoist and find it extremely beneficial that their Irish support team has first hand experience of working in hotels, hence they understand the complex requirements of our industry.

 

Solution

A good PMS is the beating heart and the core piece of software within a modern hotel and needs to interface seamlessly with a myriad of other systems. By using our Open APIs, we integrated HotSoft PMS with a host of other systems at Aghadoe. HotSoft PMS comes with a wide range of modules that are powerful stand-alone, but even better together:

Spa

The HotSoft Spa booking module is specifically designed to meet the complex demands involved in managing a modern Spa. Comprising everything you would expect from a first-class booking system in a flexible and easy-to-use format. Manage therapist and trainer schedules, availability of treatment rooms, and retail point of sale.

Sales & Marketing

The Sales & Marketing module simplifies and improves both guest relations and sales with integrated activity management as well as automated and scheduled emails to your guests. HotSoft’s Contact Manager function also makes it easier to keep your guest database up to date.

Property Owner

The Property Owner module is ideal for properties with shared ownership, utilizing functions for calculating commissions payable to external cabin or apartment owners. It also provides sales statistics and reports for compilation and presentation.

FrontOffice

FrontOffice is the foundation of HotSoft PMS and has all the functionalities needed to run a hotel business. FrontOffice lets you manage bookings, client data and finances, including the booking of individual beds and camping sites.

Conference

The Conference module allows you to easily manage planning, booking different venues and taking payments for conference packages. It has all the functionalities needed to run conference operations with or without an adjoining hotel.

Allotment

The Allotment module gives you an overview of booking contracts with your partners and manages assigned room bookings for your travel agencies.

Enterprize

The Enterprize module is designed for hotel groups and chains. It provides you with functions for centralized reservation management, rate management, and customer replication between your hotels. It also generates valuable group-level statistics and reports.

BackOffice

Plan your work, streamline your processes and increase the level of service you provide to your guests with HotSoft’s cloud-based task management module. BackOffice features a wide range of functions that are developed to streamline and simplify the work process.

HotSoft Online

HotSoft Online module enables integrated online booking for HotSoft PMS – directly from your website. The booking engine has a user-friendly design that can be adapted to make the guests feel that they are on the same site all the time.

RateManager

HotSoft’s RateManager module is an innovative cloud-based rate management system that enhances your hotel’s ability to set dynamic and optimal pricing. RateManager makes it easy for you to automate adjustments to the price rates for your hotel rooms and packages as often as necessary.

HotSoft PMS Online Check-In

Using HotSoft PMS minimizes physical contact and maximizes social distancing by introducing Paperless Guest Registration and Online Check-in / Check-out.

Point of Sale

HotSoft POS is a lightweight point of sale module designed as an extension of HotSoft PMS. It takes care of the most significant tasks required for a hotel or conference restaurant, giving you the power to manage both your hotel and your restaurant in one complete property management system.

 

We also deployed our automated dynamic pricing tool – Rate Manager, to improve Aghadoe’s ADR and TRevPAR. Rate Manager allows hoteliers to take granular control of room pricing. It also provides automated and continual adjustment of hotel rates to match the fluctuating demand in the market.

The Automatic Night Audit and reports distribution ensure that all hotels managed by Windward Management receive corresponding key reports for each site. The fully customizable HotSoft PMS Market Segmentation has also proven to be an effective tool for Windward Management which they utilize across their group to drill down into market trends, guest engagement, and satisfaction. It ensures parity across their Group.

Benefits

The entire project at The Aghadoe Heights was delivered successfully despite the challenges posed by the pandemic. Hoist Group’s Support Team was at hand to assist with all their queries, enabling Aghadoe to continue to operate smoothly during the transition and be prompt with customer service.

The partnership between Hoist Group and Windward Management continues to evolve and is valued by both parties. Thanks to HotSoft PMS being the beating heart of their day-to-day operations and capturing guest data, Windward Management is able to access valuable insights into their guests’ behavior and levels of satisfaction.

Now more than ever, as the hospitality industry enters a phase of recovery from the pandemic, capturing customer data is becoming extremely valuable for booking trend analysis, contact tracing, and decision making. At the core of these is having the right PMS to provide pertinent input, and that’s why Windward Management put its trust HotSoft PMS.

"Support from Hoist in Kilkenny has been terrific. We would view our relationship with Hoist as a partnership, which has gone from strength to strength over the years. Hoist has been very supportive throughout the development of Windward and excelled during the lock-down at setting up our teams for remote working. We place high value on the support delivered by Hoist and find it beneficial that their Irish support team has worked in hotels and understand the sometimes complex requirements of our industry."
Stephen Williams
Director of Sales & Marketing at Windward Management