Hotel “fixer” Anthony Melchiorri can turn struggling hotels around in a matter of weeks, and he does just that in “Hotel Impossible,” the Travel Channel’s new weekly series that debuted April 9. Melchiorri’s tough-love style can be hard to swallow and overhauling a business is a painful and often emotional task, but the potential rewards make it all worth it.
Each episode features a hotel that is not living up to its potential. Melchiorri secretly scouts the property and identifies its biggest problems. He then meets with the staff—from front desk receptionists to housekeeping to the owners themselves—to determine the key operation issues. These owners could risk losing their hotels if Melchiorri’s renovations do not work. After coming up with a plan and prescribing the changes that need to be made, Melchiorri revamps and re-motivates the staff and transforms the hotel.
In the premiere episode, Melchiorri traveled to Montauk, N.Y., to help Gurney’s Inn—a family-run resort and spa—stop living in the past. The family told Melchiorri that people think of Gurney’s as old-fashioned, and he presented the family with some negative reviews he found online. He was appalled by the property’s lack of service, and found a solution to their management woes in a surprising place. In the end, a lobby renovation and addressing the long neglected service problems with the laid-back staff will hopefully turn Gurney’s Inn back into a Hamptons’ hot spot.
Other episodes this season feature The Penguin Hotel, Miami, Fla.; Motel New Yorker, Miami, Fla.; Ocean Manor, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.; The Purple Orchid Resort & Spa, Livermore, Calif.; Hotel Corpus Christi Bayfront, Corpus Christi, Texas; La Jolla Cove Suites, La Jolla, Calif.; and Bromley Sun Lodge, Peru, Vt.