How is Hotel Design Affected by Pop Culture?

By Roger G. Hill Chief Executive Officer & Chairman, The Gettys Group Inc. | September 04, 2011

Co-authored by Karrie Drinkhahn, Principal, Gettys

We work in a time when cutting-edge, next-generation creativity and ingenuity must happen at just the right moment - when rapid technological breakthroughs open a spigot of rapid transactions, real-time news and an unprecedented rise in pop, fashion, celebrity and design trends. As design thinkers and thought partners, Gettys' observation and insights into today's (and tomorrow's) pop culture helps our global hotel brand partners sustain both their current and future guests.

Pop culture is the totality of ideas, perspectives, attitudes, images and other phenomena that are deemed preferred through an informal consensus within the mainstream of any given society. In the hospitality design industry, there are several areas where pop culture and its trends affect our work, which we'll explore in this article. This ranges from personalization (or guests designing their entire experience) to wellthy living (or the desire of living/being well).

Pop culture and technology have one common thread: they are always changing and advancing. At the same time, technology and its developments are increasingly accessible and attainable for consumers. The sustainability is a continuous need and challenge. While it isn't easy, and often times cumbersome, our environmental responsibility is to find ways to make our designs sustainable at the same time.

Technology Enables Luxury at Your Fingertips

Through increased personalization, hotels use cutting-edge technology to influence customer convenience and the experience. At some properties, guests can design their entire experience, including the level of service, all on reliant technology.

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Coming up in June 2019...

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.