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Absolutely shocking' Anthony Melchiorri of Hotel Impossible'

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The hospitality industry loves and fears Anthony Melchiorri, host of Travel Channel's 'Hotel Impossible.' A 'fixer' of struggling hotels, Melchiorri is known for a no-nonsense approach and a keen ability to discern deceit.

Melchiorri's track record for success is astounding. Starting as a part-time night auditor of an Embassy Suites in Kansas while serving in the United States Air Force and taking business classes at night, he transitioned to his native New York City where he oversaw a rebirth for the historic Plaza, Lucerne and Algonquin hotels.

On each episode of 'Hotel Impossible,' Melchiorri arrives at a hotel with near fatal problems and has less than a week to identify and remedy the issues and work with owners to steer the business toward success.

The season four finale of 'Hotel Impossible' airs Monday, June 9 at 10 p.m. on Travel Channel. Episodes are also available for online viewing atwww.TravelChannel.com. Melchiorri is currently in production for the show's fifth season with air dates to be announced later this year.

Dow: Giveus a preview of what viewers have to look forward to on 'Hotel Impossible.'

Melchiorri:After four seasons, I would have thought that hotel owners would be more prepared for me by getting their operation in better shape. You will see some people who are really engaged and open-minded and then you'll absolutely see some epic failures. I'm still surprised that some people haven't gotten the memo that, when I get there, I'm serious. I'm not an actor. I'm an old hotel guy who happens to be doing something on TV. When you call me and my team, we're going to turn your hotel around. We're going to give you advice, so pay attention. There's some shocking stuff heading your way.

Dow:Things can become heated when management is not receptive to your advice and to the changes you make. I've seen you pull the plug on more than one show. Have you ever felt that your personal safety was in danger?

Melchiorri: Personal safety in terms of someone coming after me? Absolutely not. As far as the safety of staying in that building one second longer - yes. In the first show that you'll see in the fifth season, I felt very unsafe and very concerned for my crew as well as myself. I've never felt in danger in terms of someone coming after me. I'm from Brooklyn and I can take care of myself. Do I get nervous about the safety of my crew? Yes.

Dow:You've done a series of 'undercover' shows where your crew revisits hotels that you have helped in previous seasons. What is the payoff for you when you discover that they have implemented your changes and are actually succeeding?

Melchiorri:When people actually implement the changes and I see their success, I don't think 'Oh how wonderful we are. We changed them.' I think 'Thank God. More people are going to be employed. People aren't going to lose their job. They're not going to go on unemployment or, God forbid, food stamps or welfare. Fantastic- we helped them but more important they helped themselves. One thing I've learned from this show is, no matter how hard you work, no matter how true you are or how authentic you are, if people don't want to change, they're not going to change. When you see the change, it's gratifying.

Dow:You've uncovered some pretty scary stuff at hotels over the last few years. What is the freakiest thing you've encountered so far?

Melchiorri: One that you'll see in the fourth season and another that you'll see in season five. In LA, a syringe that was full of drugs or blood. That was shocking. Just recently, a builder who was working with me said, 'Don't touch that electrical panel.' I said, 'Why not?' He said, 'If you touch it, you'll die instantly.' A couple of days ago, I almost stepped through a septic tank cover because it was so rusted out. It's been shocking. The safety concerns that I've seen over the last three and a half years has been absolutely shocking.

You're going to be safe and secure at the majority of hotels. Unfortunately, I don't get to go to those hotels. I go to the hotels that are in the greatest need. I see things that most people won't see. Just because you're on a budget and don't have a lot of money doesn't mean you should take your life in your own hands.

'The Big Morning Show with Mike Dow' can be heard on Big 104 FM The Biggest Hits of the '60s, '70s & '80s - airing on 104.7 (Bangor/Belfast), 104.3 (Augusta/Waterville) and 107.7 (Bar Harbor)

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