Pop-Up Hotels Likely to Keep Popping Up

By Marc Stephen Shuster Partner, Berger Singerman | February 09, 2014

Co-authored by Dawn M. Meyers, Partner, Berger Singerman

Question: What do sports fans, festivalgoers, and concert devotees all have in common?

Answer: At one time or another, they have all suffered the frustrating experience of not being able to find a hotel or lodging establishment near their big event that isn’t sold out or exorbitantly priced. And for those who decide to attend the given event on late notice, the cost (incurred, or worse, not being to attend) is punitive.

Not only does hotel scarcity put their ability to go to that event in jeopardy; even more importantly, on a macro level, it serves to reduce the applicable community’s economic footprint that a would-be consumer would have surely produced. The dollars that each additional, discrete user brings to an event can mean the difference between success and failure. With such a routine problem, entrepreneurs in the hospitality space recognized that a fix was badly needed. The question was what type of solution would have the flexibility of being both “real-time proactive” and “real-world sufficient” to address the gap in the marketplace?

The solution might just be found in pop-up hotels. Pop-up hotels are temporary lodging establishments, which can include virtually all the components of a hotel room, including beds, furniture, showers, toilets, electricity, and WiFi, that open and operate for a finite period of time that dovetails with a given event. A number of these pop-ups are also equipped to include restaurants, retail space, and even nightclub facilities – all which can, potentially, be licensed out to other businesses looking to capitalize on the event.

So just look around. A growing trend in hospitality aims to square that disconnect of hyper-demand. From start-ups to flagships, everyone is talking about pop-up hotels.

Coming up in January 2018...

Mobile Technology: Relentless Innovation

Technology has become a crucial component in attracting and retaining hotel guests, and the need to enhance a guest’s technology experience is driving a relentless pace of innovation. To meet and exceed guest expectations, 54% of hotels will spend more on technology in 2018, and mobile solutions in particular will top the list of capital investments. Many hotels are integrating mobile booking, mobile keys, mobile payments and mobile check-in into their operations. Other hotels are emphasizing the in-room experience, boosting bandwidth and upgrading flat screen TVs to more easily interface with guest mobile devices. And though not yet mainstream, there are many exciting technology developments on the near horizon. The Internet of Things (loT) is taking form in some places, and can be found in guest room control systems, voice activation systems, and in wearable sensors that can be used for access and payment options. Virtual reality headsets are available at some hotels so guests can enjoy virtual trips to exotic locations or if off-property, preview conference facilities and guest rooms. How long will it be before a hotel employs a fleet of robots for room service, or utilizes a hologram as a concierge, or installs gesture-controlled walls that feature interactive digital displays? Some hotels are already using augmented reality for translation services, or interactive wall maps, or even virtual décor. This pace of innovation is challenging property owners and brands to stay on top of the latest technology trends while still addressing current projects. The January Hotel Business Review will explore what some hotels are doing to maximize their opportunities in the mobile technology space.