De Vere hotels consolidate online brands through private cloud

Supports business integration as recent growth had introduced a number of different platforms into the business

By Antony Savvas, Computerworld UK |  Cloud Computing, private cloud

The De Vere hotel group has created a private cloud architecture to help consolidate its online brands.

The company has chosen existing WAN provider Claranet to support the consolidation move.

"De Vere's rapid growth was great for the company but it threatened to cause us a major technological headache," said De Vere group IT director Jo Stanford.

"Acquisitions in quick succession brought matters to a head as the companies had separate hosting providers, which meant we ended up operating and maintaining different large platforms," said Stanford. "This was a costly and inefficient way of working as it prevented us from truly integrating the new companies into the wider group, and made it difficult to present unified branding and customer experience across the group's separate sites."

De Vere came to the conclusion that it needed to upgrade its hosting infrastructure. It chose Claranet to implement a hosting platform to consolidate its range of websites. This quickly evolved into a managed application hosting service, where Claranet manages applications such as De Vere's website booking engines.

The new platform needed to cater for peaks and troughs in traffic, support the group's online strategy by providing an environment for building website branding activity, and provide the capacity for greater functionality in its booking engines.

Claranet's response was to create a Dedicated Virtual Hosting (DVH) platform, or private cloud, that encompassed all of De Vere Group's web applications.

"We have over a million people on our database whom we reach out to regularly online, and we need to manage the volume of traffic generated when we do," said Stanford. "Claranet's private cloud service enabled us to allocate server resources dynamically to meet the changing demand from different applications and websites."

As well as the dedicated virtual hosting service, Claranet provides a resilient WAN upon which the service relies. This connectivity is optimised for the cloud and ensures optimum application performance to improve customers' online experience.

As De Vere's applications and websites are held in a private cloud, all the virtual machines running on the servers are dedicated purely to De Vere's needs. Any peaks and troughs in user demand from rolling out new campaigns or functionality can therefore be easily accommodated, enabling the group to pursue its online growth strategy.

In other hotel connectivity news, the FBI recently warned travellers there has been an upsurge in malicious software infecting laptops and other devices linked to hotel internet connections.


Originally published on Computerworld UK |  Click here to read the original story.
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