Prior to beginning this design sprint, we had already created a basic style guide, that we called the foundation. This foundation loosely defined our typography, colors, icons, spacing and information architecture. The foundation proved essential for guiding our work in a unified direction while allowing room for us to individually explore creative design solutions. This way we felt that we were all working together, towards the same idea. Reviewing our collective work at the end of each day, we began to see patterns emerge. We course-corrected when necessary, and started defining our standardized components.
You'll be the voice of Expedia for our hotel partners. As you onboard new hotels, you'll find out everything from location to pool size, star ratings to number of rooms. Then you'll upload all that information onto websites seen by millions across the globe. You'll make sure it's 100% accurate of course – but also that it's attractive to customers and competitive in the market, with the right rate plans, promotions and seasonal deals. You'll build a strong relationship with the hotels you work with, making sure they get the very most from being on our websites, and giving them training on how to use our innovative Expedia tools to help catch the customer's eye.
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We offer apartment-style suites with a full kitchen, comfy recliner, cover lit bedding, and a flexible workspace. Business guests especially take advantage of our free Wi-Fi access and free laundry services. Our extended stay hotel is located near major businesses including Mercedes- Benz, Pfizer, BMW, KPMG, Western Union, and Towers Watson, as well as both Rockland Community College and Dominican College.
The Admirals Club was conceived by AA president C.R. Smith as a marketing promotion shortly after he was made an honorary Texas Ranger. Inspired by the Kentucky colonels and other honorary title designations, Smith decided to make particularly valued passengers "admirals" of the "Flagship fleet" (AA called its aircraft "Flagships" at the time). The list of Admirals included many celebrities, politicians, and other VIPs, as well as more "ordinary" customers who had been particularly loyal to the airline.
To help fund the site, the founders created special edition breakfast cereals, with presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain as the inspiration for "Obama O's" and "Cap'n McCains". In two months, 800 boxes of cereal were sold at $40 each, which generated more than $30,000 for the company's incubation. It also got the company noticed by computer programmer Paul Graham, who invited the founders to the January 2009 winter training session of his startup incubator, Y Combinator, which provided them with training and $20,000 in funding in exchange for a small interest in the company. With the website already built, they used the $20,000 Y-Combinator investment to fly to New York City to meet users and promote the site. They returned to San Francisco with a profitable business model to present to West Coast investors. By March 2009, the site had 10,000 users and 2,500 listings.