Introducing OpenTable Guest Center

Personalized hospitality is now beautifully simple with Guest Center. Guest Center seamlessly merges the leading restaurant reservation network with complete front-of-house management tools. In the video below, Matt Roberts, CEO, Joseph Essas, CTO, and Jon Morin, Product Lead, deliver the thinking, design and demo of the new, cloud-based, hospitality solution by OpenTable.

To experience Guest Center, a solution designed to make tailored hospitality even easier, please email

Tweet of the Week: Restaurants Reach More Diners with Holiday + Seasonal Promotions

Believe it or not, the holiday season is almost here. We’ve got Thanksgiving in Canada on Monday. And, Thanksgiving comes to the states on November 28– as does Hannukah (a convergence being called Thanksgivukkah, according to The Wall Street Journal), followed by all of the fun of Christmas and New Year’s Eve. If you’re a planner like I am, you’re probably already giving a lot of thought to your holiday dining. At OpenTable, we try to make it easy for diners to find a terrific table for every holiday through special promotion pages. We urge our restaurant partners to share their information on their holiday and seasonal offerings early and often, just like the folks at The Russian House in Austin, Texas (aka @RussianHouseATX) have. Restaurants can easily and quickly join these free promotions and reach more holiday diners by visiting Restaurant Center.



Dining Poll: Is There an Ideal Age for Kids to Start Dining Out with Mom and Dad?

Whenever we ask about kids and restaurants, we get varying (and passionate!) opinions. So, we’re asking about them again. Should children begin going to restaurants as soon as their parents can tote them in a comfy baby carrier? Are toddlers too young — or just right? Does kindergarten help kids sit through a long meal? Weigh in below!

Why Great Restaurants Still Struggle

why-great-restaurants-still-struggleA lot of people, in and out of the food industry, dream of opening their own restaurants one day. It’s an incredibly difficult pursuit, one that requires a deep passion for food and an array of skills almost no other profession does. Successful restaurant owners must have superb people skills to manage the people who help run the restaurant as well as the patrons who dine there. They must also possess bargaining and negotiating prowess, accounting abilities, a clear-cut vision for their establishments, boundless creativity, a take-charge, can-do attitude, and endless energy. They should also be good with a mop. Seriously. Owner-operators have to be willing to do anything and everything to have a successful lunch and/or dinner service each day, no matter what that entails. And most are.

So, why, then, do restaurants fail? Some may be ill-conceived or simply cursed with a bad location. Others may be run by people with a lot of heart yet not enough experience or financial backing. But a lot of restaurants get everything right and, still, things go wrong. To understand how this happens, read this article in the San Francisco Chronicle by Samin Nosrat, former sous chef at the now-shuttered Eccolo in Berkeley. Across the coast, the famous Café des Artistes has also shut its doors after more than a half a century. Theirs is a slightly different, but nonetheless sad, tale.

As a diner, it’s truly important to support your neighborhood restaurants on a regular basis. When local favorites close their doors, the effects, as Nosrat points out, are far-reaching.