October 2018


Speaking Engagement at the Historic Hotels of America Annual Conference

Michelle presented an academy session at the 2018 Historic Hotels of America and Historic Hotels Worldwide Annual Conference at the Broadmoor Hotel, Colorado Springs.

The session was entitled: “What Is Your Hotel’s Visual Reputation? A Photographic Journey.” Here is a summary of Michelle’s key points:

Ask Michelle to choose between a luxury or historic hotel assignment, and she will tell you: a historic hotel every time. Why? Because, she is passionate about heritage hotels – when you walk in the door, there is that magical, intangible sense of a bygone era. There’s also the knowledge that this photo assignment is likely to be preserved for generations to come. Images that are captured today will one day become historical documents themselves, and as a photographer she feels proud to play a small part in the hotel´s history.

From a more commercial point of view, guests check out of your hotel before they check in based on the quality of the photos you show them. Michelle’s academy session aimed to teach General Managers how to enhance their historic hotels’ visual reputation by portraying hotels in their very best light. Her session offered participants the chance to:

  • Turn their hotel´s visual reputation around with fine hotel photography.
  • Acquire knowledge on how to transform their website and marketing materials with quality revenue-generating imagery.
  • Learn about a Historic Hotels of America member ́s case study: The Benbow Historic Inn, CA.
  • Collect practical tips on saving both time and money on their next photo shoot.
  • Anticipate the challenges facing hoteliers in procuring digital imagery to suit a wide range of specifications, from responsive websites to social media platforms and traditional print media.




Aspen off-season and Vail Mountain Pass

Aspen just before the ski season is a dream: if you’re lucky, there is pure white driven snow and it’s easy to book a restaurant, contemplate art and admire the slender aspen trees. So much to capture on camera, and hotels with low-season prices.

Many of the images that Michelle photographed in Aspen are now available in her stock collection. Travelling over the 3250 m Vail pass in the snow is quite something – stunning scenery in the Rocky Mountains of central Colorado. Car hire companies don´t know what they are letting themselves in for! Luckily we followed a snow plough through this pass, which is named after Charles D. Vail. A highway engineer and director of the Colorado State Highway Department from 1930 to 1945, Vail also gives his name to the ski resort.



October 2018 Fairplay, Colorado, USA

Gold-rush town and cartoon show setting

This historic gold mining settlement was founded in 1859 during the early days of the Colorado Gold Rush. The town was named by settlers who were upset by the generous mining claims given to the earliest prospectors, and opted for a more equitable “fair” system for its residents. Fairplay is located in South Park, a flat grassland basin formed by the Rocky Mountains’ Mosquito and Park Mountain Ranges, at 3034m.

Since the late 1990s, South Park has been best known as the setting of the animated series South Park. Trey Parker, one of its creators, grew up in the more affluent mountain community of Conifer, about 65km east of Fairplay. A single long street with wooden buildings, a South Park museum and a “one-horse town” hotel combine to make Fairplay a very interesting town to visit and, of course, to photograph.



October 2018 Old Colorado City, Colorado, USA

Historic American town

This neighbourhood in Colorado Springs is straight out of an American movie. Originally knowns as El Dorado, it was also founded during the Colorado Gold Rush of the late 1850s, later becoming an important ore processing centre. Now home to boutiques and galleries, it is well worth visiting just for the street art, depicting Native American Indians – some of the best graffiti I’ve ever seen.