Two Decades of Wall Coverings - What 20 Years in the Business Teaches About Quality and Value

By Rollin Bell Founder / CEO, PCM Construction | February 25, 2014

According to USA TODAY, hotels will spend a record $5.5 billion on renovations this year. Travel and tourism is already the world's number one industry and continued growth is expected for the next decade. The industry has reached an all time high in spending for renovations and it's important to be ahead of the curve. It takes a continual effort to maintain and update your hotel's design, with some hotels renovating every two years. By distinguishing your property with design, you can create an image that puts guests at ease. Design is a key differentiator. And renovations can pay off. Re-inventing your hotel is not as difficult as some might imagine. Travelers' expectations of how hotels should be maintained are on the rise. In order to boost your profits, you must first give your property a boost.

If your hotel is 'behind the curve,' it might be time to start thinking about revitalizing your design. In addition to what you typically think about when you consider renovating, it's also important to reflect on the present condition of your wall coverings, especially in high-traffic areas such as your lobby. Creating an inviting lobby is crucial. It's an extension of your company's identity and, if it's a successful design, it can work to keep your employees and guests happy and loyal. People are usually willing to pay higher rates in exchange for a positive guest experience.

Wall coverings are a key element in the design of your hotel. Wall coverings help set the tone and style for your facility. And now that wall coverings have made a substantial comeback after a downturn in the mid-90's, they are once again back in vogue.

Going Green

Green design is an important part of today's hotel renovation projects. The green trend means more than simply using recycled materials, it also means using products that have less harmful manufacturing techniques. Companies are gauged by EPA compliance, therefore making designers more cognizant of eco-friendly methods and products. The end user knows if it's a 'green' product, so more and more designers and architects lean towards environmentally safe materials. Unlike government buildings and schools, hotels are not subject to strict regulations, but designers and architects are increasingly specifying 'green' products for paints and glues to enhance the air quality in their facility.

Additionally, 'green' materials and construction practices can help reduce exposure to chemicals and other pollutants that present health problems. Those affected by pollutants like asbestos should find a trusted mesothelioma law firm for a consultation. With the use of environmentally friendly glues and other products, hotel executives can minimize the impact of renovations on guests with allergies or chemical sensitivity issues. Certain glues and paints are extremely toxic for the human body, even after they have dried, and many of them continue to contaminate the air long after the renovation. In order to avoid this health hazard, many hotels have begun using eco-friendly paints and glues.

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Sales & Marketing: Selling Experiences

There are innumerable strategies that Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors employ to find, engage and entice guests to their property, and those strategies are constantly evolving. A breakthrough technology, pioneering platform, or even a simple algorithm update can cause new trends to emerge and upend the best laid plans. Sales and marketing departments must remain agile so they can adapt to the ever changing digital landscape. As an example, the popularity of virtual reality is on the rise, as 360 interactive technologies become more mainstream. Chatbots and artificial intelligence are also poised to become the next big things, as they take guest personalization to a whole new level. But one sales and marketing trend that is currently resulting in major benefits for hotels is experiential marketing - the effort to deliver an experience to potential guests. Mainly this is accomplished through the creative use of video and images, and by utilizing what has become known as User Generated Content. By sharing actual personal content (videos and pictures) from satisfied guests who have experienced the delights of a property, prospective guests can more easily imagine themselves having the same experience. Similarly, Hotel Generated Content is equally important. Hotels are more than beds and effective video presentations can tell a compelling story - a story about what makes the hotel appealing and unique. A video walk-through of rooms is essential, as are video tours in different areas of a hotel. The goal is to highlight what makes the property exceptional, but also to show real people having real fun - an experience that prospective guests can have too. The June Hotel Business Review will report on some of these issues and strategies, and examine how some sales and marketing professionals are integrating them into their operations.