Company News

Das Dutch Village Inn Takes Best Western Brand

COLUMBIANA, Ohio — Das Dutch Village Inn, an independent hotel that opened here 16 years ago, will soon become Best Western Dutch Village Inn and Suites.

“As times change and as technology changes, it’s really hard to compete as an independent,” says chief operating officer Grace Styer.

The hotel needs access to a national and international booking system, which is beyond the means of most independent operators, she explains.

Becoming part of Best Western chain gives Das Dutch Village Inn a heightened presence on the internet and should increase online reservations, which make up only 5% to 10% of all reservations, says human resources manager Marcia Kalina.

Nearly 70% to 80% of reservations at Best Western Hotels are made online, Styer notes. “It will give our staff more time to serve our guests and it will increase our occupancy.”

Joining Best Western allows customers to use mobile apps to book reservations, and it gives them access to the Best Western rewards program.

“These are things we weren’t able to do ourselves,” Styer says.

Das Dutch Village Inn will remain privately owned and retain its identity, she emphasizes. “We haven’t been sold,” she says. “We are becoming a member of Best Western, which is a not-for-profit organization of independent hotel owners.”

Das Dutch will comply with Best Western mandates, Styer adds. Hot breakfasts will be served in the new breakfast lounge and 43-inch televisions will replace the smaller TVs in the rooms. Black quartz will be used for hard surfaces in the customers’ rooms.

The changes coincide with a general renovation of the hotel. Best Western’s decorator service is providing interior design advice.

“It just seemed like the right time for all of this,” Styer says.

Das Dutch Village Inn’s themed rooms, such as the Victorian, Shaker and Mission rooms, will be discontinued, along with the primitive-style artwork in the rooms and hallways. However, the couches and carpet in the hallway will be kept.
“People love our big hallways with the couches and they utilize those. That’s not changing,” Kalina says.

The hotel is scheduled to remain open throughout the renovation, which should be complete by the end of August, Styer says. “The hotel will look fresh, but at the same time we will keep all of our old charm.”

Pictured: Grace Styer and Marcia Kalina.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.