The New 'H' Word and the Future of Hotels
By Marc Portugal Director of Marketing, Bortz Group of Companies | August 03, 2010
So here's a riddle:
What begins with the letter "H" - provides the opportunity to dine, drink, spa, exercise, network, romance, and maybe fit in a little sleep - and is not a hotel?
Answer: the new hotel - the hotel of the future - which for the sake of this article I will refer to as a Habitat.
The volatility - or at the very least the unpredictability - of the economy both now and in the coming year(s) is not merely a financial roller coaster. It is also an emotional house of horrors. Will companies be able to afford to travel as much (or at all) to conduct business? Will hotel team members face growing job insecurity? Will people still go out to eat and drink? What is the future of the hotel as we know it? Again - the answer is the Habitat. Say it out loud...it feels good, doesn't it? It has a sense of activity and serenity all at the same time. It's a fun word - and more importantly a word that will make hotels millions of dollars if executed correctly.
Why do people really love hotels?
- It's not the scratchy towels and continental breakfasts.
- It's not the out-dated patterned carpeting in the meeting rooms.
- It's not the travel sized bar soap or the cold bathroom tile.
- It is the opportunity to get away from daily routines.
- It is the opportunity to live out expressions of aspiration.
- It is the opportunity to become a "celebrity" for a day - to the extent that a guest feels the experiences of both extraordinary recognition and paramount service.
A Habitat is the incarnation and delivery of the sentiments of relevant, experiential, and meaningful promises. This is also how a brand is actually defined.