The hotel business has suffered tremendously during this global pandemic, causing significant job loss in the hospitality industry, as well as deserting towns and emptying lodgings across the globe. Yet, what many don’t realize, is that the hotel business as we know it was already suffering a slow demise long before COVID-19 hit our shores last January. The reality is, people had already begun transitioning towards more intimate, thoughtful boutique hotels and short-term vacation rentals over the past five-plus years. Why?
Many feel that the outdated model (and aesthetic) of the mega-hotel franchise has rounded its course, leaving patrons craving innovation, seeking something different. The modern traveler wants to feel as though their stay is unique, aesthetically considered, and catered to them, specifically. They crave picturesque moments and social media-worthy photo opts, as opposed to large breakfast buffets, oversized pools, and stuffy rooms. Large, outdated hotels have needed to contemporize for quite some time. It’s only recently through this pandemic, that many franchise hotels have been forced to reconsider their businesses.
Some of them did. Others did not. And those that didn’t adapt fast enough took a much harder hit to the pandemic than those that did. Yet, for the franchise hotels of today that are still living in the past decade, hope is on the horizon.
Without much warning or time, larger hotels have been forced to evolve their business tremendously, not only to compete with boutique hotels but also to appeal to the modern traveler during our modern crisis. In order to stay afloat during this global pandemic, hotels have had to reduce capacities, cater more towards the individual, and implement safety precautions. All of these evolutions have indeed modernized the hotel industry.
Tasked with updating these grand buildings to meet the modern moment, interior designers, engineers, hotel managers, and space designers alike have been on the constant search for the right spatial solutions and updates to bring into their business. If you’re tasked with this job, you may be in need of some serious inspiration!
The Return to Simplicity
One of the key differentiating characteristics between boutique hotels and large franchise hotels is the sophisticated simplicity of smaller-sized stays. Similar to serving sizes at a restaurant, less is usually more, in hospitality terms. We live in a world of excess, so when that excess is challenged, more often than not, people appreciate the stark contrast of well-considered minimalism. Boutique hotels are typically very choosy about what they put into their rooms and shared spaces. The furniture, the art, the complimentary extras. All of the details end up becoming a special moment for guests to enjoy and consider.
To accommodate for COVID safety restrictions, larger hotels have actually had to reduce the amount of furnishings in their shared spaces such as dining rooms and lounges, in efforts to socially distance their patrons. In most cases, the less-is-more movement of this year has actually worked in their favor, making their interior spaces more open and artful.
Catering To the Individual
Something that larger franchise hotels tend to miss is the care for the individual. Larger hotels are often focused on getting as many people in and out per night as possible, often forgetting that the details matter and that people like to be catered to. Certain considerations like complimentary gifts, help with luggage up to one’s room, and the latest luxury consideration- social distancing. In order to compete with smaller-scale hotels that appeal to Covid travelers, your hotel needs to consider spatial distancing throughout your interior floor plan. From the minute your guests walk through the door, to their rooms and shared spaces, each environment should be carefully constructed to reflect a concern for safety. There are a number of ways you can tailor safety to the individual, and Sliding Wall Partitions and glass room dividers are a great way to visually maintain safe space apart, all while retaining a lovely visual aesthetic. The Sliding Door Company crafts beautiful, modern glass wall partitions as well as their latest product- Qubi Glass Wall Wrap! In fact, this new innovative design requires no major construction, and can be installed within a day by a team of professionals! These glass partitions also come in hundreds of configurations and glass opacities, making it easier than ever to integrate safety into your hotel interiors.
Now that you have the basics for transforming your hotel into a well-considered “boutique” style stay, let the interior remodeling begin! For more info on Qubi Glass wall partitions and Sliding Room Dividers from The Sliding Door Company, check us out online. Book a free consultation with one of our representatives and start your hotel transition today!