How the Aria Hotel Budapest Became the Number One Hotel in the World

By Adele Gutman VP Sales, Marketing & Revenue, Library Hotel Collection | April 23, 2017

Before the first shovel was in the ground, we knew Aria Hotel Budapest would be an extraordinary hotel. For the Library Hotel Collection and our founder, Henry Kallan, creating a hotel that is beyond ordinary is everything. We think about each detail of the design and experience to create wow factors for our guests. These elements generate rave reviews, and rave reviews are the cornerstone of our marketing program. This is how we became the #1 Hotel in the World in the TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards.

The Design

First, Design With Love

First we start with the design. Henry always dreamt about returning to his Central European roots to build not just a beautiful hotel but something really special for the people of Budapest. For him it was not about business, but rather his love for the city. It had to be a work of art, a hotel unlike anything they had ever seen before, for one of the most beautiful cities in Europe. Hungarian master designer Zoltan Varro immediately understood and embraced Henry’s dream to design a hotel to express the beauty and power of music, which is a passion of the people of Hungary. He poured his heart and soul into the task. His devotion can be felt in every area, from the curve of a desk leg to the touch of silk velvet.

Second, Details Matter

The hotelier, architect and designer collaborated with a perfectionist’s attention to detail, to re-imagine a historical, 1870s building. We painstakingly rebuilt the seven-story Neoclassical limestone façade to replicate the beauty of the original architecture, some of which was lost over the years, to return the building to its historical place in our special neighborhood. At the same time we breathed new life and a bit of magic into the space that the old bank occupied while retaining the historic charm of our block creating a setting that even 25-year-olds love just as the most experienced world travelers do.

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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.