Frederick Sion, Jr. (U.S. Army, Retired) has trouble catching his breath. He’s sitting in his hotel room at the Holiday Inn Express® Powless Guest House on Joint Base San Antonio, with his head in his hands. He looks at the floor and says what’s bothering him: “Sometimes I wonder why bad things happen to good people.”
It’s an understandable feeling, especially for a wounded veteran whose lost many of his friends over the years, including his wife. But Sion, Jr. also knows that good things can happen too.
Powless is close to the hospital on JBSA, and many of the guests who stay there are soldiers and veterans seeking treatment. This fact is always front of mind to the General Manager and Regional Director of IHG® Army Hotels, Teresa Colatarci. “Really, in the hospitality industry, I don’t know how many [people] encounter guests with multiple limb loss or who suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder.” She pauses. “This is real, you know?”
Joint Base San Antonio has six IHG® Army hotels serving military members and their families. Colatarci manages them all. As IHG® Army Hotel’s guests are primarily active duty soldiers or veterans and their families, the team requires a level of empathy that goes above and beyond your average hotel staff. They work to meet the unique needs of the military guests they serve.
IHG® Army Hotels also works hard to exemplify IHG®’s commitment to deliver True Hospitality. For Colatarci, that means going a step beyond your average hospitality – it means really believing it. These values are exemplified by programs such as IHG Army Hotels’ Teen Academy.
The Teen Academy is a summer internship training program created by IHG Army Hotels to offer its employees’ children real experience working in a hotel and a way to earn money through seasonal employment.
One of the participants of the Teen Academy at Colatarci’s hotels was Brandon Delacruz. Since he enrolled, he’s found pride in his work. When he assists the guests like Sion Jr., he knows he’s doing something that impacts people’s lives.
Despite the bad things that can happen to people, people like Colatarci and Brandon remind Sion, Jr. of the good as well. Through their care and demonstration of true hospitality, they’ve given him more than a place to stay. They’ve given him a home.
“I like being here. Now that my wife is no longer here, I’ll probably spend the rest of my days right here at the Holiday Inn Express because I feel secure – I feel at home out here.”
Visit IHG Army Hotels to book your stay at one of 40 nationwide locations.