Staying on top of trends helps hoteliers stay relevant the ever-changing expectations of today’s guest. As time progresses, new preferences come into play and guest expectations grow higher and higher. Which means becoming familiar with trends is imperative for revenue growth.
In this report, we’re taking a look at the Summer of 2018’s biggest and most promising trends to advance your hotel’s business effectively and in the direction of your long-term objectives.
Sustainability has emerged as one of the biggest trends in hotels – as well as many other verticals. From restaurants to retail stores it’s a trend that remains consistent and shows potential for long-term success, not just on your guest’s loyalty but on our planet.
We’ve seen it sweep over the world with “plastic straw bans” and sustainable lighting in hotel rooms, and although some may have the misconception that it’s a hefty investment, there are smaller steps your hotel can take to becoming more environmentally conscious.
For hotels, making a shift can be as simple as changing a “one time use” soap bar to a refillable soap container or switching in-room plastic cups to paper recyclable ones. Making a shift can also be as big or complex as altering restaurant menus to feature more local food or finding renewable sources of energy to power your hotel. The scale of sustainable change is up to you but regardless of whether it is small or major, a shift to a more eco-friendly future is one that the guest will appreciate.
A great example of a sustainable shift is Proximity Hotel in North Carolina. Made up of “90% post-consumer recycled content” they use around 100 solar panels on the roof of their hotel to conserve enough energy to heat their water. In addition their whole design concept functions around sustainable practices such as naturally lit hotel rooms, local food incorporated into dining experiences and making sure 75 percent of the hotel’s waste is recycled. With their practices, they not only lower their carbon footprint but drive consumer loyalty.
(Photo Credit: https://altusprecast.com/projects/proximity-hotel/)
(Photo Credit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proximity_Hotel)
In addition to the obvious benefits, it’s important to note that shifting to a more sustainable hotel doesn’t mean you have to compromise on quality. In fact, in addition to helping you boost your bottom line, it will also aid you in making a shift towards a more conscious and progressive establishment.
Over the years we’ve seen the phasing out of phone and email bookings as the incorporation of mobile and messaging options have become available. Guests have come to not only prefer messaging but expect it, as messaging apps have become the fastest growing channel for communicating with brands In fact according to Statista; In 2016, 1.58 billion mobile phone users accessed over-the-top messaging apps to communicate, and this figure is projected to grow to 2.48 billion users in 2021.
Today, messaging is a fundamental part of many hotels. Whether used for bookings, room service, sending direct invitations, sending notifications, or broadcasting offers, it’s a quick and seamless way to keep connected with your guests and for them to stay connected with you.
To incorporate mobile messaging into your establishment, it’s important to consider a number of factors, including; website responsiveness, social media presence and ease of use. Including mobile messaging should be a well thought out strategy that includes some type of platform to help manage your conversations.
The benefits, when leveraged correctly, are monumental. A real-time messaging program can help you engage guests by incorporating a variety of channels including SMS text, email, in-App messaging, Facebook, Twitter, and more. In addition, they can help to improve and expedite operations by streamlining the number of team member required to resolve guest questions and requests.
By incorporating mobile messaging, you connect your team to deliver a transparent view of the guest and respond faster to their needs, on the messaging channel of their choice.
As mentioned in a previous blog post, the design of your hotel can play a definitive role in whether a guest chooses your hotel over another. Today, multiple businesses are competing to create establishments that offer more engaging experiences. It’s less about achieving the standard “luxury” hotel and more about the guest’s experience within it.
Guest preferences have risen extensively with the expansion of social media, and while they still expect amazing service they also expect to be wowed by design. When deciding on the look of your hotel you should be considering every aspect with the guest in mind and with what message you want to convey. From the lobby to the guest suites, to the tableware in the dining room, the hotel should resonate with the guest and should provide a clear concept.
One of the most popular tactics for creating an innovative design for hotels is embracing surroundings. A great example is the Kakslauttanen accommodation located in Finland – 250kms from the Arctic circle. This unique hotel provides guests with an immersive igloo shaped room. Inside, they are provided with only the bare necessities to have a truly authentic, experience of sleeping in the Arctic. Constructed mainly of glass, they are available for rent during the peak seasons of the northern lights – allowing patrons to be fully immersed in the winter wilderness.
(Photo Credit: http://www.kakslauttanen.fi/accommodation/)
(Photo Credit: http://www.thebohoguide.com/bohemian-hotspots/europe-finland-lapland-saariselka-iglo-kakslauttanen/)
The Eco-Domes in Bali are another innovative way to keep guests engaged through design. Using only natural resources such as bamboo, they transport their guests to a tropical oasis.
(Photo Credit: https://marcusl.net/newearth-haven-eco-dome-bali/)
Using design as a method of engagement is a great guest loyalty tactic as well as an excellent marketing tool. Guests love unique and innovative concepts, so don’t miss out on the opportunity to create something for your own property to help you stand out.
A Focus On Wellness.
Wellness has become a major focus of many hoteliers as of late. With so many trending diets and changing lifestyles, hotels have had to adapt by offering more amenities and services directed at promoting healthier habits.
A focus on wellness goes hand in hand with showing your guests you care about them. By honing in on their health you show guests that they aren’t just another number at your hotel. In addition, offering various wellness specials ensures that you don’t exclude potential guests, such as people with various dietary restrictions.
To make the move towards a more wellness conscious establishment, take steps to incorporate vegan and health-conscious options at your restaurant or offering complimentary spa treatments or gym sessions. Take a deep dive into the needs of your guests and understand what they want from your establishment. Knowing what they want can help you build a more effective wellness plan.
The Mandarin Oriental in Las Vegas is a great example of putting wellness at the forefront of their offerings. Not only do they offer complimentary yoga and Pilates but attendants circulate Mandarin Oriental’s eighth-floor pool deck serving mini-smoothies and frozen fruit to hotel guests. The hotel also offers a multitude of wellness packages that make staying active and on a specific diet regime easier for guests.
(Photo credit: https://www.westjetmagazine.com/story/article/wellness-focused-hotels and Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas)
Following the latest trends in your hotel is a great way to stay relevant to your target guest audience and stand out from a crowd of competitors. As times and lifestyles change, it’s important to keep in mind the more consistent trends such as sustainability and immersive experiences so you can ensure a more successful present and future.