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 2018...

Sales & Marketing: Opinions Matter

Hotel Sales and Marketing Directors manage a complex mix of strategies to attract and convert customers into guests. Part of their expertise includes an awareness of customer behavior during the reservation process, so they can make sure their hotel is favorably positioned. One such trend is the growing popularity of travel review sites. According to one recent survey, 61% of prospective customers consult online reviews in order to validate information about the hotel before making a purchasing decision. Another survey found that the average hotel customer reads between 6-12 reviews across 4-10 properties before making a final decision on where to stay. Similarly, other studies have shown that consumer reviews are a more trusted source of information for prospective customers than other kinds of marketing messaging. In fact, reviews are often considered to be as influential as price regarding whether a customer decides to complete a purchase or not. Plus, travel sites with the most reviews - including recent reviews from satisfied customers and thoughtful responses from staff - were also found to be the most appealing. So having positive reviews on a travel website is essential and can help to increase a hotel's conversion rates dramatically. Of course, there are all kinds of additional marketing strategies for sales and marketing directors to consider - the importance of video and the emergence of live streaming; the implementation of voice search; the proliferation of travel bots; and the development of Instagram as an e-commerce platform. 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.