How Hotel Design is Emerging and Changing

 Hotel design is constantly emerging and changing. This is a nonstop process that has been taking place ever since the first hotels popped up on the market. Travelers are constantly expecting the newest things and will not put up with anything less. Fortunately, hotels have always understood this because you know what they say, “The customer is always right.” From function to design features, hotels have been stepping up their games year after year to meet expectations.

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More Functional

Functionality consists of many different things, as you can check out in our other blog here {link}, but we’ll try to make it short. Flow: Hotels have starting taking into consideration how one room leads into the next and the feel along the way. No more empty feeling spaces or overcrowded spaces. The time for randomness is out and the time for thoughtfulness design is in. Balance: The rooms will provide a sense of visual balance to ensure that guests are comfortable, welcome, and at ease. Decor: Art, sculptures, etc. are now going along with branding and style of each hotel.

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Outdoor Lounging

Outdoor pools have always been a thing, but now comfort is more important than ever. Hotels are urging people to stay there and relax all day opposed to just for a few hours. Not only are they adding in extremely comfortable seating options, hotel are putting in bar areas as well as a server to provide “poolside service” at all hours of the day. Some hotels are even adding in the option to turn the area into a night time bar and lounge area for adults after hours. Of course, no swimming at night, but cocktails are encouraged.

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More Foliage

There was a time when indoor plants were not so popularly used in hotels, especially in the guest rooms. One reason is that they get to be high maintenance if they’re in every room. Now, hotels are willing to take that extra step to make sure that guests are enjoying all of the rooms they enter. Plants and foliage is known to give a person all of the feels in regards to relaxation, home-y vibes. The nature feel that plants give when they are indoors helps bring a room together, while giving a sense of outdoor and “one with nature”.

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More Comfort + Luxury

Worried more about style than comfort, some hotels have started to slack on what’s most important. While looking great is absolutely a priority, if a guest cannot sit in a chair or lay in bed without fidgeting, the purpose is obsolete. Yes, style should be considered, but more design companies are taking into consideration comfort more and more. Guests want to be able to be pleasantly surprised when taking a seat in an amazingly trendy chair and feel relaxed! Luxury, high-end hotels sometimes get caught up worried more about style, but the newer boutique hotels are placing comfort just as high on the priority list.

Luxury Hotel Design Trends to Watch Out For in 2019

With more and more hotels upgrading and making improvements, luxury hotels are needing to step up their game. In 2019 be prepared to see many more facilities with updated rooms and spaces filled with environmentally friendly design, technology, and more. Luxury hotels have to stay ahead of the game, providing guests with the best and most worthwhile experiences available. Check out what lux hotel design trends you should watch out for in 2019.

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More Tech, Please!

Technology, of course. This will always be a top priority on every hotel’s list from now on. With the many advances in the past few years, it’s hard not to implement new tech features into hotel design. High-tech amenities will now be going beyond the typical in-room iPads and Wi-Fi access. We’re predicting that smart rooms will be the next big thing in luxury hotel design. With different features in the testing stages, guests will have the ability to dim the lights, turn on the TV and even adjust the temperature with a touch on their smartphone! What about voice activation? All of these are just to make sure that the guests have a custom and personalized experience, not to mention it makes life easier on the hotel employees.

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Pared Down Common Spaces

Paring rooms to create more common spaces is the new normal. Open spaces create a sense of welcome for guests and is all the rave with millennials. While older generations are used to taking their work to their rooms and working in solace, millennials crave a community feel while being able to work on their own at the same time. Shared spaces are becoming more common due to this fact and it makes sense. On the other hand, guest rooms are getting smaller thanks to both the desires of younger travelers as well as rising real estate costs.

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Going Green

In addition to hotels reusing towels and installing automatic lights, luxury hotels have begun to branch out in a bigger effort to be green. Taking energy conservation and sustainability to new heights, some high end hotels have started using solar panels to conserve energy. Others have added greenhouses to the property, sometimes on the roof, to attempt in supplying their own vegetables and herbs for kitchen needs. We will also see more practices that support sustainability and connect guests to the local culture and history.

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Feeling Luxury

Hotel design will always have a some component of visual luxury, but as the years go by, luxury hotels will focus more on comfortability and feeling good in a space opposed to just looking gorgeous. The vibes a guest feels in every room is becoming exceedingly more important than an aesthetically pleasing place to sleep. Feeling this luxury also comes with an increase in excellent service and convenience. Hotel spaces and furniture will be designed to both look and feel luxurious.

 

Architecture + Hotel Design Trends

Architecture and Hotel interior design trends seems to walk right alongside each other. When a hotel is built, there is always an outlook to make sure that the vibe, theme, and overall look needs to be exactly right for what the hotel wants the guest to feel when arriving. From the front door to the pool, architects are there to make sure everything is built and runs smoothly. Once that’s taken care of, the next step is developing the interior design. Good thing they play well off of one another.

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Sleek, Round and Modern

When there is a special theme or look for the hotel, it is much easier to figure out the interior. Let’s say that the outside of the hotel and many parts of the interior architecture is a rounded edge. That would make it extremely easy to decorate and decide what the furniture items should look like. Once the hotel brand comes into play, you can apply that information to help with the colors as well! If you notice in the above photo, clearly there is a modern, rounded architecture layout that is taking place. Through in a bit of square furniture in there to balance it out and the look is already less overwhelming.

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Au Natural

This organic, wooden influence is becoming more popular. Not only is is easier and more efficient, it saves time and money as well. If a hotel is truly interested in creating an upcycled, natural vibe, use recycled wood from old houses or buildings. Incorporate wood and foliage throughout the hotel to make sure the vibe is calm and serene. Panelling the walls with wooden palettes seems to be a trendy move and also makes the space feel even more natural and organic. Oh, and of course you have to have wooden floors!

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Brick by Brick

This architecture influence can be absolutely stunning. There is so much potential when it comes to using brick. The wall behind the bed can be made out of brick, you can use faux bring wall coverings, or use real stones and brick to create an underground feel. Some bars are using stone and brick on walls, building only half way up and finishing out the rest with drywall. It gives the space an old-timey vibe while creating an almost “speakeasy” atmosphere. Although stone is used to bring age upon a space, it can also bring a sense of longing and adventure to guests.

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Wicker and Wood

Now this combo is perfect for hotels that have many outdoor areas. Outdoor architecture is important, especially if there is water close by. Build a large patio area for guests to lounge around and enjoy the ocean breeze. Cabanas should be built as well if sunshine gets a bit intense, this will allow more freedom for guest to lounge and enjoy the sun without the overheating or sunburn. Wicker is a perfect material for outdoors because it lasts a while and the color doesn’t fade! Keep some of the seating cushioned, but be sure to mix it up.

Luxury Lifestyle

So many different things in the fashion and lifestyle industries tend to help drive certain trends in the design industry. It has always been this way and will continue to do so. When industries begin to influence each other, the world starts working better together. Let’s see what recent influences are driving hotel interior design ideas.

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Art

Art can make or break any room or space. Many luxury hotels pride themselves on buying and acquiring all types of expensive pieces and displaying them throughout the hotel. Art is a great way to express a brand and will effectively give a hotel a reputation at the least. Making sure that the art is genuine and worthwhile is crucial is creating a luxury brand reputation. Obviously if you want to just fill some space, it is not suggested to start buying random expensive pieces of art. Keeping to a theme will help develop the brand more efficiently.

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Fashion

Fashion has been an influence on luxury lifestyle and design since, well forever! From mix matched patterns, to solid color themes, to retro mad men 60’s styles, the fashion world and the interior design world have been best friends. Whether it was the fashion industry that sparked an idea in the interior design world or vice versa, they play well together and always have. For example, a zebra print rug in a hotel suite. Now, are we completely sure which industry struck gold with this idea first? No. However, it’s not a big deal to find out who had the idea first, all we need to know is that it works and it will be used forever in both industries.

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Seasons

Season will always and forever effect how luxury hotels are created. Hotels that are built in tropical regions such as Turks and Caicos will undoubtedly have an outdoor pool, lounge areas outside and possibly an outdoor shower if your villa is secluded enough! There would be no need for design features such as a fireplace or animal fur throw for the cold weather. If a place in this region did not have the outdoor amenities, it would most likely fall through and be out of business. People travel to areas of the world at specific times of the year to experience certain aspects of the season, hence the word vacation!

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Unique Experience

With many more hotels turning their focus to quality experiences, quirky design and local cultural touches, a guest’s experience has become almost impossible to turn out average. Some are calling this focus on the unique experience, “Accessible Luxury”. The casualization of the luxury sector and the growth in market demand from an experience-hungry and aspirational has begun to help turn the tide in regards to typical brand standards. The culture around hotels is beginning to turn away from standardized looks and boring uniforms. People want to see a similar theme throughout hotels, yet get a unique experience whenever they stay in different locations of the same hotel branch. It’s a little harder to please this type of guest, but it is also so much fun to fit into that niche market!

Top Influential Hotel Brands

There are many hotel brands, but none can measure up to these top luxury brands which have been around for longer than we have!

  The Peninsula, UK, Photo Credit: Your Travel Group

The Peninsula, UK, Photo Credit: Your Travel Group

The Peninsula Hotels

As one of the world’s oldest luxury brands, Peninsula has been on the rise since opening in 1866. Although there are just ten locations, each location is in a major world city which allows them to appeal and attract clientele that is a bit out of their league. In every location you could make the argument that that location is the best above the rest, but the original home will always remain in Hong Kong. This location has a fleet of Rolls Royce vehicles, which due to this reputation, the hotel was awarded its very own color, Peninsula Green. Just a few hallmarks of Peninsula hotels include exquisite fine dining options, grand lobbies and unbeatable service. In fact, the Beverly Hill location was the first of its kind, offering 24 hour stays making check-in and check-out times irrelevant.

  The Towers at Elizabeth Quay, Photo Credit: The Ritz-Carlton

The Towers at Elizabeth Quay, Photo Credit: The Ritz-Carlton

Ritz-Carlton

Possibly the best known brand in the luxury hotel industry, Ritz-Carlton has been making waves for a century. Starting with Cesar Ritz, the "king of hoteliers and hotelier to kings," the Ritz and Carlton hotels were opened in Paris and London. Today, the company continues “putting on the Ritz” with over 85 hotels and resorts in almost 30 nations. Perhaps what the Ritz-Carlton is especially known for is the excellent club lounges, at least in the United States. This practice is a lot less common in Asia. In places such as Cleveland, Charlotte, New Orleans and St. Louis, they seem to monopolize the region due to the lack of any other luxury hotel options in the area. With that being said, their presence in Europe is much smaller while completely avoiding major cities such as London, Paris, and Rome (except for partner hotels).

  The Bar Area, Photo Credit: The Fairmont - Rey Juan Carlos

The Bar Area, Photo Credit: The Fairmont - Rey Juan Carlos

Fairmont

Fairmont is a huge international brand with hotels in 20 countries and its claim to fame is having grand historic properties. Some of these location include a world wide iconic mountain resort, Banff Springs, Chateau Montebello in Quebec, and Chateau Frontenac in Quebec City. Prior to  merging under the Fairmont name, the Fairmont side of the family had its own similar icons, including the century old Fairmont San Francisco. Since the merger they have added many new locations sitting at the top of their collection in regards to luxury. These include St. Andrews Bay golf resort in Scotland, which is a huge destination for men, and Chateau Whistler ski resort. Both incredibly located and beautiful.

  Park Hyatt Seoul, Photo Credit: Taste of Coex

Park Hyatt Seoul, Photo Credit: Taste of Coex

Park Hyatt

Out of the many tiers of the Hyatt Hotel Company, Park properties is at the top. Park Hyatt appeals to the high end of both business and leisure travelers. Beside the identity the brand keeps with displaying valuable art all around the hotels, it seems that Park favors keeping the guests on their toes. With a variety of city hotels, resorts and styles, pinpointing the so called style of the brand is not so easy. Some of the properties are in restored grand historic buildings in incredible destinations like Buenos Aires, Vienna and Paris, while other locations in Asia are in exceptional high rise towers. A good business practice that Park Hyatt has adopted is adding locations where other luxury brands have overlooked, including Mendoza, China’s Changbaishan ski resort, and Zanzibar! Due to the amount of tourism every year, having locations in up and coming places is an extremely smart business plan.

Inspirations + Ideas

Over the past 20 years, hotels have been branching out to continue to up their game. The trend has gone from being uniform and consistent in style, to unique and different for each location. Many upscale and luxury hotels are able to do this and charge a pretty penny to help bring guests the best and most special experience possible.  There are many different trends happening at the moment and here are a few of our favorites.

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Above and Beyond

Who doesn’t want that rooftop view? Most guests and even guests that aren’t staying the hotel will come to the rooftop lounge area just for the experience. Adding in a bar is going to help with business as well as small eats. When it comes to furniture, make sure it is comfortable. This means couches and small tables to keep drinks and plates on. No one wants to be on top of a building sitting on an uncomfortable seat. Also, build the walls high and make them glass! This provides a sense of safety as well as adventure. Guests will love the fact that they can still sit and see a sunset or the view of a urban city.

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Dark and Cool

Yes, we all know about the light and dreamy spaces, but there is another way! To create a space that seems mysterious, yet soothing, paint the walls a dark color like charcoal and contrast the walls with white furniture. Although you want to make the room seem cool, this does not mean you should not have plenty of light. Get creative to create the necessary lighting because no one likes doing their hair or putting on makeup in the dark. That usually doesn’t turn out well. This theme works best in the bathroom because of the calming and safe vibe it gives guests.

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Modern and Classy Spa

Spas are a whole other story. There are many ways to create a welcoming and soothing spa environment. Although an outdoor spa is beautiful, weather is something you absolutely cannot control, so try to keep everything indoor. In addition, go ahead and put a relaxing salt pool in the middle of it. It will bring a sense of community, yet give guests the option of having a solo experience if they wish. Add in plenty of widows so that nature can make an appearance and provide that serene and relaxed space that spa goers crave. Wood and greenery are always great ways to create this environment, so get creative and maybe layer the ceiling with wooden panels!

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Seating with a View

Rooftops are not the only places that have a view. If the hotel is near the water, play to your advantage. Again, use those glass walls so guests get the most out of their seats. Place plenty of dining tables and chairs in a designated outdoor area. This will attract guests that are staying at the hotel and ones that are from around the community. The more the merrier, right?

Travel + Trends

Travel around the world is at an all time high. This is partially due to the fact that many jobs can be done remotely, freeing people from having to stay locked down to one part of the world. This year, many new trends are emerging for those with the travel bug and the means to do so.

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Middle East

The growth in Middle East traveling has recently surpassed the big time destinations such as Europe and South America and it is not slowing down anytime soon. According to a recent poll from the World Tourism Organization, the Middle East is the fastest growing travel region and the Palestines are leading that growth with 57.8% growth of international visitors. There was a time when travel to the Middle East was looked down upon from the United States, but times have changed and culture & history are waiting to be discovered.

 

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Solo Travel

There has been a boom in solo travelers. No longer are the days when you need a partner or group of friends to travel with. Many people are taking it upon themselves to travel and explore on their own, leaving them more opportunity to meet new people and dive into the culture. There are even more incentives now to travel by yourself with some hotels giving discounts to these travelers. Travel companies are creating travel products to not only cater to the solo traveler, but to celebrate them. There has not been a better time to travel by yourself than now!

 

Winter is the New Summer

Winter time is now a sought after travel period. With winter festivals taking place worldwide as well as the seasonal difference on the other side of the equator, more families and other travelers are choosing to explore areas of the world during the winter. The Christmas markets in Germany alone will take your breath away, not to mention skiing in the Swiss Alps or experiencing winter time in Paris. The snow atop European castles will make you want to save your traveling for the winter time.

 

Experience

The time has passed where an extreme adrenaline rush is required in order for a vacation to be considered adventurous. Travelers are now eager to based their experience of adventure in regards to immersing themselves into new and different cultures. This could be anything from taking cooking classes, to going on wine tastings, and more. There’s so much more to learn about a country and its people, so hanging out with the locals, trying new foods, and being a part of traditions is the best way to create that memorable experience when traveling.

 

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Off the Beaten Path

Places like Paris, Rome, London, etc. are becoming extremely over populated with tourism. Meanwhile places like Tiger’s Nest Temple in Bhutan has yet to truly be marveled at. Most people will never be able to discover the road less traveled because they are so busy trying to play catch up with what the rest of the travel world is doing. Fortunately, avid travelers are realizing this and taking it to a new level by going off the beaten path. This does not mean walk into the wilderness by yourself because it’s adventurous. We’re talking about going to places that are not very common and have not been over explored. It’s definitely a new trend, so we expect many more “not-so-popular” places will be making appearances on Social Media soon.

Empowering Design

When thinking about empowerment, we can’t help but imagining strong support, thought processes, uniqueness, and more. There are many ways to help empower design and create the standard of making design the success that it is today.

 

Support

Design is more than just materials and ideas. It takes a team to put forth the effort to make sure interior design takes off. Many people think that because a name is associated with a place that it was that one designer who did it all. That is usually never the case. A designer needs support from outside sources as well as team members to help put all of the pieces together. This can range from finding a piece of furniture to making to that the furniture matches the color scheme of the design. There are many ways to create and ensure empowering design and the support of others is a key to it all.

 

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Research

Empowering design can, most of the time, come from an original design; however, sometimes it comes from doing research. Research is a great way to not only find more ideas, but to make sure that an idea is as original as you think it is. Imagine coming up with an entire piece of furniture, material, color, etc. and come to find that it was already created years ago. Not only is that a waste of money, but it is a huge waste of time as well and time is one thing you can never make more of. Do you due diligence and confirm originality before proceeding. Once you do so, the research empowers that specific design making it more desirable than ever.

 

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Create a Culture

Interior design is not just decorating, although that is a fun part of it. There is a certain culture that lingers around the design world and without it, design would not be the industry it is today. A culture in an industry and/or workplace can easily make or break design. It is increasingly more empowering when everyone on a team is on board with ideas, as well as how to work with each other. Most people cannot work well with others if the environment is hostile and belittling. This mean that the culture around your designers and even clientele has to be consistent. Define the culture and start empowering the designer around and within you!

 

Encourage Vision

The vision is quite possibly the most empowering part of empowering design. If you cannot see where you want to go with a space, building, piece of furniture, etc., then the vision is either lost or was never there. The vision is what guides one to define where the design needs to go. How you get there is another story, but without a destination in mind, designers can get stuck wondering and wandering, looking for an answer to what they should be working towards. Get the vision written in stone and utilize trusted team members to help lay it out.

Architecture + Design

With the urgency for authenticity and unique ideas on the rise, designers have been working tirelessly on how to achieve those things. Brand new ideas seem to be more rare, but technology is constantly changing, opening doors to new ways of design and more ideas of how to build. There is a competition called the Radical Innovation competition that asks designers, architects, students and hoteliers, to bring to the table innovative hospitality concepts. Although there can only be one winner, all of the ideas seem to bring a different and well thought out idea to the design world.

 

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Water

Ever heard of hydroponics? If not, you should probably make yourself aware pretty soon. Hydroponics is the method of growing plants without soil, using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent. Think about if you were able to provide all of the food including fruits, vegetables, and even fish as well as recycle rainwater to supply a hotel. Hydroponics gives life to this idea providing ways to grow and supplement the food and water for hotels. Although this method has not been researched to its entirety, the idea is incredible and has the potential to help society limit the use of gas in the future.

 

 Rendering by Aprilli Design Studio that includes pods that transfer visitors to and from long-distance destinations.

Rendering by Aprilli Design Studio that includes pods that transfer visitors to and from long-distance destinations.

Travel

Imagine a pod that transferred you from the airport to the hotel without ever having to leave the pod. In this rendering, Aprilli Design Studio proposed the idea of using a different form of transportation. Once you arrive at the airport, the pod would pick you up, take you to the hotel and connect to the room, leaving you to do as you please along the journey and not have to worry. This includes taking a nap, reading, making a meal, etc. Whatever you may need to be doing that a typical ride in a vehicle would inhibit. The fact that the pod would connect to the hotel eliminates any other middlemen, becoming more efficient and reliable in regards to arrival time. Just a side note, these pods can also double as a personal vehicle throughout the trip.

Health

Mental and physical health seems to be on the up and up in society today, especially in the United States. A design firm in Italy submitted a design for a hotel meant to be a safe haven for single parents and children going through family changes and issues. Partnering with psychologists, the firm was able to create multiple therapeutic areas around the hotel that could be used by individuals or groups for different issues. The haven was to be covered in plants while being built into the landscape. Cross-ventilation incorporated into the design also got rid of the need for thermal insulation. It is a known fact that foliage, when placed correctly, can provided and cozy and comfort level that decreases stress and increases happiness. No wonder they would place this hotel in northern Italy among a beautiful landscape.

 

Luxury Lifestyle

What is considered a Luxury Lifestyle? Nowadays hotels might have a different idea of what people might consider luxurious. Recently, the idea of being unique and authentic has begun to take over the hotel interior design world and guests are all about it. Luckily, interior design is always changing, adjusting, and conforming to new and upcoming trends.

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All About Experience

Experiences create memories, so why not make the experience unforgettable? With the materialistic trend moving more towards creating experiences, people have started putting more value in the time they had opposed to the items they bought. So how does that affect designers? To make a long story short, hotel owners are craving to not only see samples of wallpaper and fabric swatches, they want to see the future hotel and rooms themselves. This reason alone is why 3D visualization has become a large element of design presentation nowadays. It is truly incredible how realistic it can look, providing the initial good or bad experience for the client.

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Uniqueness

There has been a massive shift from using big name brands for interior decor to now using and supporting more local artists. The idea behind this is not only to provide a unique look, but to also show the support and love to artists in the area. Boutique hotels are doing a great job with this and it is much more apparent in the interior design. Shopping at luxury furniture shops will provide you with impeccable options, but you can also find those pieces whether you are shopping in New York, Los Angeles, or Paris. How long can something be considered “luxurious” if it does not have a sense of uniqueness or rarity behind it? This explains why vintage pieces are making a huge comeback as well!

 Recycled wooden bed frame

Recycled wooden bed frame

Sustainability

Awareness for preserving the environment is more prominent than it has ever been before. Luxury means more than just providing high-end furniture and design. Guests what to know and understand that hotels are taking measures to not only accommodate them, but also ensuring that it is being run in a somewhat environmentally friendly way. Soon, people will be boycotting hotels that are not taking responsibility for their part in the Earth’s pollution. Not only in regards to the functioning of the hotel, but the furniture will be evaluated as well. Using upcycled furniture or pieces recycled from old buildings and houses can be a great way to start making the change!

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Character/Story

Maintaining the storyline and character of a space is easier said than done. Sometimes designers can get caught up in what the newest trend is and can end up replacing parts of the design that told a story about the space. For example, if hotels in New Orleans started utilizing the news modern or contemporary design trends, the French characteristics would be lost as well as the history. It is important to understand where the space originated and why, otherwise the design could lose it’s authenticity.

 

The Adult Friendly Hotel Game Room

Let’s be honest, we are all kids at heart. Game rooms for adults are starting to pop up all over the United States. Why should the children get to have all of the fun? These rooms are perfect for parents, young professionals and the older crowds as well. Because they are catered towards adults, there are many games and activities for all ages. Not to mention the bonus of having the option to order drinks and food as well! Here are a few games and amenities offered in some of the coolest game rooms we know of.

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Board Games

Keeping it classic, board games are always a favorite. If anything, it makes adults feel nostalgic about their childhood. From Scrabble to Operation to the more adult rated games like Apples to Apples or Cards Against Humanity, there is no shortage of games to choose from. One “board” game that has been on many hotels and bars radars is Giant Jenga. They are usually hand built and can be 4 to 5 feet high! You definitely don’t want to be in the way when that thing falls over!

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Shuffleboard

A newer addition to game rooms, practically taking over for foosball, table shuffleboard is taking game rooms by storm. You’ll need to bring in sand for the board, but other than that it is not very messy or hard to maintain. It’s better than the big version of shuffleboard that is usually played on the ground with pushing sticks because it takes up less room and is easier to relocate if necessary! Quite the exciting addition we think.

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Video Games

Some people say dogs are a man’s best friends...but we think it’s video games! Hotel adult game rooms are now including video games, but that doesn’t mean nintendo only. We’re talking Wii and other interactive game consoles that allow for different group members to compete against each other. It’s just as inclusive as board games and you never know, maybe there is a board game you can play virtually in the game room as well!

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Billiards and Darts

These two options complete the game room. What game room doesn’t have at least darts or billiards. It’s a fun way to have more than two people participating and depending on the group, you can always make it interesting with a little playful gambling! There’s nothing better than a pool table and some friendly competition.

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Food & Drinks

Ah, yes. The best part of the game room! Not only do you have games for fun, food and drinks are available too! Alcoholic beverages along with some bar food makes it feel as if you’re out at the bar with some friends. This factor keeps guests occupied and makes them feel more comfortable with staying in. Getting guests to stay and dine on the property has been a challenge for hotels, especially for lunch and dinner. This option gives people an even bigger incentive to do so along with occupying their time with the available games!

Historic Hotel Renovation: How To Maintain The History

When it comes to renovations, there are many obstacles that come up, especially for a hotel. Now, think about a hotel that is over 100 years old! Yes, a century. Renovating something that aged can be quite a task, not to mention maintaining the history. Making changes throughout a Historic Hotel without ruining the feel and character is not easy by any means, but there are many things that can be done to do so.

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Be Customer Driven

First and foremost, the hotel has to be customer driven. Without consideration of how guests will receive the renovations, many things can go wrong. Make sure to do a survey, questionnaire, etc. to get an idea of the things guests truly enjoy about the hotel. This could be certain theme, the vibe, specific rooms in the hotel, or even the elevators. The list goes on. A renovation requires sensitivity to reoccurring and/or sentimental guests or those who worry about how a renovation can change the hotel.

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Honor the History

The history is obviously a crucial part to think about and maintain throughout the renovation. Think about it. Imagine going to stay an an old and charming hotel in New Orleans or Paris and enjoying the french style and history all around the hotel. Now imagine coming back to that hotel after it has been renovated and seeing that it has been completely remodeled with a new modern theme. The entire reason you went back is because of the way the history and design of the hotel spoke to you and made you feel. Now it is just like every other new hotel on the market. Honor the history while updating the broken and weathered parts of the hotel.

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Do Not Underestimate the Renovations

This is a tip that most architects and others can attest to. Most hotels will set a budget, but as soon as renovations start they realized that much more needs to be done. Increase the budget. If the budget stays the same and you settle on updating or fixing certain things that are necessary, it might corrupt the integrity of the hotel. Plus, you’ll need more regular maintenance all over the hotel to make sure those projects that weren’t started do not disrupt the ones that were. Make sure to account for all things that could possibly go wrong because with older buildings, those things will most likely happen! Better safe than sorry!

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Rely on Experts

When museums receive paintings, they rely on experts to restore the paintings carefully and precisely. Understand that it will not be your typical construction company that will know what to do. Find a company that specializes in older artifacts and architecture. This will be crucial when it comes to assuring the character, integrity, and life of the building. One wrong move and many things can go wrong in a Historical Hotel. Find someone or some company that has plenty of experience with historical buildings and stick with them. You’ll need regular monthly maintenance for the hotel once renovations are done. This will help elongated the process of needed new renovations!

The In-Room Kitchen

Hotels are including more and more amenities for guest rooms. Beside the common mini fridge and microwave, some hotels are now building kitchens into their suites. Of course it is not always a full kitchen, but most are big and equipped enough to make a meal for a family. Groups that are traveling might want to throw together some snacks or breakfast, or even make every meal together in the kitchen while hanging out in the room. Whatever the choice, having a kitchen makes dining that much easier for guests.

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Cottage

When going on vacations with family, it is nice to have a room/suite that also includes a cooking place. This is the best because there is also a refrigerator to keep different veggies, proteins, and more. The cottage style is great. Cottage styles are extremely common when for beach areas, lakeside hotels and even places where there is a lot of snow. The kitchen in these hotel rooms are always located right next to the living room, usually open with no dividing walls. This is so much better when trying to cook and spend time with family.

 

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Modern

A modern take on a hotel suite with a kitchen seems to be pretty common in the high-end hotels. Keep in mind that not all rooms have a kitchen, so when they do, it is equipped to the nines. High-end hotels charge a good deal more to have access to this amenity, so many families are expecting a fully functional kitchen. If not, then they would have to call for room service from the hotel kitchen and then what’s the point of having a kitchen? Modern kitchens have the sleek and rounded look. From the light covers to the island table, everything is clean and crisp.

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Simple

Now the simple style in-room kitchen speaks for itself. It’s nothing fancy yet has all of the essentials. This usually means that the layout is convenient and the design is minimal. Without putting too much effort towards making the kitchen aesthetically pleasing, the hotel focuses more on the functionality of the kitchen. Guests that maybe just want the convenience to make their own breakfast and maybe sandwiches for lunch. Most of the time these simplistic kitchens are perfect for a couple or group of friends that aren’t too involved in the cooking, but might want to save some money by cooking “at home”.

 

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Rustic/Industrial

A popular design for in-room kitchens seem to be Rustic/Industrial. Mixing wooden palettes with metals like iron, copper, or gold colored furniture. This design and style gives a cool and homey feel for guests. The trend itself is elegant and timeless. It can go with almost any style and makes a guest feel more comfortable in that space opposed to feeling too stuffy and formal.

 

Fortunately in-room kitchens are not very common. We say fortunately because it is one of the amenities that is a high commodity when searching for a hotel. Hotels that have in-room kitchens in some of their rooms are covering a niche that not all hotels can. Well done.

Trend Alert: Hotel Snackbar

The hotel minibar used to be guests’ main food option for snacks while on-property. Nowadays, hotels are including the units in rooms or near the front desk. Another issue is that guests have become inconvenienced with the high prices hotels often charge for the goodies available. To try and satisfy that snack void, hotels have been supplying a grab-and-go set-up option for guests to choose from. While snacking has always been a necessity when it comes to food and beverage options, what guests are looking for has changed.

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A Different Kind of Sweet

Sometimes people get exhausted with the typical candy bars and chip options. Guests aren’t just looking for those items anymore. They also want a wide variety of healthy and local snacks. This could be fruit, protein-focused options and/or nutrition bars. With the wide health fad taking place in America currently, most guests don’t want to have to change their dining habits while traveling. Let’s not forget, while candy and other sweets are tasty, fruit is Nature’s candy!

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Keep it Local

Many people are into the organic, locally grown, farmers market labels. It is incredible how many people will buy something else just because it is locally grown. There was a point when people around the United States did not really care about supporting the local companies around them, but as of late, that has changed. More hotels are keeping this aspect in mind when stocking up snack options. Especially organic options as well as gluten free, vegetarian, and vegan options.

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Grab-and-Go Eats

As travel evolves, guests want more opportunities to eat on the go instead of sitting down for traditional meals. The hotel snack bar is the perfect place for this. Pre-made sandwiches, packaged cheese, different trail mixes, etc. are all perfect options for the professional on the go. More hotel kitchens are starting to implement this into the snack bar area for the convenience alone. Not everyone has time to order room service or call in to-go orders at nearby restaurants. We live in a fast economy where everything needs to happy immediately, so having these types of food option available will not only please guests, but have them appreciative as well.

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Coffee, please!

As we mentioned above, travel continues to evolve, and so does the world of coffee. Many hotels are now doing more to appease guests when it comes to variations of available coffee. This means anything from putting in a Starbucks to just having a little stations beside the snack bar in order to help guests with their coffee needs. Because everyone is on the go, having customized coffee inside the hotel creates yet another sense of convenience for the guest.

 

Ultimately, sales are reflective of the occupancy in the hotel. However, this amenity is truly appreciated and will continue to be a factor when it comes to producing returning guests. Get creative with the organic and locally grown options, even for the coffee, and guests will love it!

Summer Wedding Essentials for Every Hotel

Every hotel needs to know the Summer wedding essentials. Besides all of the typical essentials for any season such as linens, tables and chairs, Summer requires a few more items and must-haves to make the wedding go smoothly.

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Fun in the Shade

Yes, we want everyone to enjoy the sunshine, but once the weather gets a bit too warm, people will be hunting for shade. Make sure that guests are hovering under a tree because there is nowhere else to get out of the sun. The solution here can be many things. Gives the bride and groom a couple of options. Set up tall umbrellas around the ceremony, set up a large tent with all of the dining tables inside/beneath, or simply provide an awning if the wedding is on a patio or balcony. There are many ways to provide more comfort for the guests, so think about ways to get shady!

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Hydration Stations

With the sun beating down on the guests, everyone needs to be on their best hydration behavior. In places such as Arizona or intensely dry desert heated areas of the country, dehydration is a huge issue. Provide an array of fun, infused waters. This will encourage guests to drink them opposed to just plain water. Have these stations near the ceremony, the cocktail area and the dining area. You can never have too much water when it comes to drinking and celebrating out in the sun!

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Lawn Games

I think everyone can appreciate a good lawn game. When the weather is beautiful and the wedding is outside, people want to have fun! What’s more inviting than a good lawn game such as corn-hole, croquet, lawn bowling or bocce ball? The comradery alone with bring guests together and will lighten the mood in case there is any tension or awkwardness. Having this option for the bride and groom to choose will make them even more excited to have the wedding at your hotel. Most hotels only provide indoor amenities, but outside there are so many more options. Also, the convenience of having lawn games will entice the couple to simply use yours instead of finding an outside source.

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Fresh Fruit

Yes, there should definitely be snacks, but offer the wedding planner the option to put out fresh fruit before the ceremony and/or during cocktail hour. The happy couple will appreciate the treats because you know how weddings always run late. Guests will most likely be getting antsy, so having a little something extra can’t hurt. This will help get guests in a friendly and happy mood, if they weren’t already. After all, fruit is Nature’s candy.

 

Those are only a few Summer wedding essentials for every hotel to offer. Not only will the guests love them, but the couple will be pleased to utilize everything that is offered. The more hotels can offer, the less work the couples have to do! Offer as much as possible to keep the love birds comfortable and trusting in your hotel.

TREND ALERT! Hotel Waterparks

Now that more and more adults are traveling with children, waterparks are the perfect addition to keep kids occupied. Of course parents can’t just leave their kids at the waterpark all day, but with some supervision, this is the perfect place to have the kids let off some steam. There are even parts of some of these parks that are great for just floating and relaxing, so parents, you get to enjoy the park as well. There are a few places around the world that are already in the waterpark game, so here is what they are doing!

  Great Wolf Lodge - Kansas City, KS

Great Wolf Lodge - Kansas City, KS

Indoor Waterpark?

Thank goodness for indoor waterparks. These hotel waterparks are truly a blessing in disguise. Most people wouldn’t dare head to a waterpark in the middle of the Winter. Low and behold, it is now possible. With more hotels creating this indoor style waterpark, the fun in the water can go year round. Not only does it make these hotels unique, it creates a source of income that they would most likely not achieve in the winter months. People will travel from all over to get to these parks just so that they and/or their children can get to experience a little piece of Summer time. How amazing is that?

  Club Mac - Illes Balears, Spain

Club Mac - Illes Balears, Spain

Toddler Time

When kids are younger, they seem to tire out faster. This is why you see families with younger children getting multiple day tickets to Disneyland. Kids get tired halfway through the day and just want to go eat and sleep. It would be impossible to do it all in one day with a toddler. The toddler parks are becoming more popular every year. It is mesmerizing for the children and lets the adults have a bit of fun too.  The water is incredibly shallow, allowing even the youngsters to roam around without the high risk of drowning. Of course adult supervision is still required, but now people can just hang with the baby all day while getting that sun-kissed glow they’re aching for.

  Grand Marquis Hotel Wisconsin Dells, WI

Grand Marquis Hotel Wisconsin Dells, WI

Multiple Amenities

Not only do some of these hotels have a water park, they are now including many more water park options. Amongst these option are heated pools, indoor pools, kiddie parks, water slides,

indoor water parks, jacuzzis and more! It is absolutely incredible the amount of slides and parks that are on some of these properties, especially with hotel rooms and restaurants as well. Many of these hotels are basing all of their marketing off of the water park. Yes, this may only attract a specific demographic (families), but that just means more money. The bigger the family means more people buying tickets, which means more people staying the night, which means for people eating at the restaurants. All in all, it’s a win to have a water park at your hotel.

 

Hotel waterparks are exploding all over the world and until they become more popular, the current existing ones will continue to hold the monopoly power. Which is perfectly fine because even Wisconsin and Kansas need a little love in the Winter time.

The Guest Room Design Process

When designing a guest room, there are many features to keep in mind. From the size of the room to the theme, it is a task that is much easier said than done. Here are a few steps that go into the guest room design process.

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Mind the Size

A huge issue facing hotels today is the decision of how big to make the guest room. With so many sizes of furniture and televisions, not to mention the bathroom space, hotels are having a tough time deciding how to exactly design the guest room. Depending on the shape of the ceiling or the layout of the walls throughout the room, some boutique hotels have been able to come up with some unique ways of designing a room while maintaining the character of the space. Keep out oversized furniture such as couches and unnecessarily large bed frames. Doing this will help keep the scale of the room proportionate.

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Consistency

A beautiful guest room should have consistency from room to room. You wouldn't wear a yellow shirt with purple pants and green shoes, so why would you decorate each room in the hotel with a completely different color palette or style? When decorating a room, think about the branding. Some items can be different, but the style and color palette must remain consistent. Stay with the whole scheme of the hotel or else guest will get an overwhelming sense of confusion. It is amazing how the layout and colors of a room can affect a person, so why take the chance. Unless the hotel’s theme is “Leftover furniture”, continuity from lobby to guest room to conference room must be implemented.

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Signature Piece

Most hotels rooms will always have the essentials. Television, bed, dresser, desk, etc. Putting a signature piece of furniture or decor can help guests tie your brand and hotel to that item forever. Imagine placing a fireplace, real or not, in every high-end room of the hotel. Guests will always remember and associate fireplaces with “that hotel” they stayed in. It’s that specific association that gives guests the urge to come back and even spread the word to their friends! Word of mouth marketing is priceless, so why not take a chance and throw in a signature item into the guest room design.

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Let there be light

Lighting is some of the most essential decorating that can be done. Be sure to have a plethera of lighting in every room. No one likes an under lit room, so the more the brighter! When installing lights, think about the task that the lighting will be focused on. This could be reading, working from a computer, or other tasks. Of course we shouldn’t forget the ambient lighting to set the appropriate mood. A guest room can never have too many lamps!

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Make it Personal

The guest room should be a reflection of the branded style. By original artwork, mix up the photos placed in each room to create that uniqueness. Boutique hotels can even place books and bookshelves throughout the rooms to make guests feel like they are at home. People want to feel the homey, comfortable vibe when they are heading to bed, so why not put in those personal touches. Blow up a photo of the sketches of the original hotel. A little bit of hotel history is perfect when you want guests to know that the hotel has come a long way and values everyone who stays there.