Library Archives

 
Jackson Thilenius

What are the hotels of the future? Will all the newest technology implications harm or hurt us? Jackson Thilenius of Retail Design Collaborative highlights what the future of the hotel looks like, how technology is rapidly changing our lives for the better and for the worst, and how hotels can help fill a need in the marketplace as a safe haven for consumers to "tap back in" to our true selves, senses and the wonder of life and our humanity. Read on...

Kurt Meister

Although historic hotel properties are distinct in character, repairing or replacing elements of these vintage structures offers a number of shared challenges. One need not look further than Manhattan's famed Waldorf Astoria, an extensive renovation project aimed at reinventing and preserving a landmark property and its architectural distinctiveness. And it is the preservation of those architectural elements - and their related, historic tax credits - that are central to these projects, regardless of scale. By understanding the challenges of repair and restoration, historic hotel owners and operators can better ensure the legacy they've been entrusted with will last well into the future. Read on...

David Ashen

As hoteliers and resorts rethink their retail shops in more relevant modern and inspired ways, David Ashen, founder and partner of interior design and brand consulting firm dash design, looks at how some brands are complementing and enhancing the hotel experience by creating sales venues and retail markets that connect to the property's brand and the local culture, while being meaningful to the guest. Read on...

John Tess

Brands increasingly seek ways to distinguish themselves in the marketplace by creating a "local" experience. The rehabilitation of vintage buildings offers real opportunities. The historic spaces give a window to the local past. The stories associated with the buildings create a unique guest experience and real sense of the community they are visiting. This article focuses on five case studies from around the country: The Langham in Chicago, the Crawford at Denver's Union Station, the Monaco in Washington, D.C, the Argonaut in San Francisco, and the Adelphi in Saratoga Springs. Read on...

Jackson Thilenius

In our changing hospitality and retail climate, we're seeing Pop-Ups appear on virtually every corner. But why have they become so popular and why is it important as hospitality professionals to understand their impact on our business? Let's take a look at what's driving this phenomenon and how we can embrace this new type of service demand from guests seeking an authentic destination experience as a service model. Read on...

Ray Chung

Lighting has always been an integral part of hospitality design and has never been more important—or more challenging—than it is today. Advances in technology allow for much more flexibility, just as hotels try to accommodate the changing demands of their guests. But with careful planning, these challenges can instead become opportunities to create unique and memorable guest experiences. While all parts of your hotel should feel cohesive, not all areas should have the same exact lighting. The lobby, restaurant, meeting and banquet rooms, corridors, hotel rooms and exterior spaces all have different purposes and different lighting needs. Read on...

David Ashen

There's a fine line between nodding to culture and addressing universal needs. When it comes to smart hotel design, David Ashen, founder and partner of interior design and brand consulting firm dash design, believes that owners and operators, and the designers and architects who partner with them, need to be mindful of the small details that can make or break a guests' travel experience. By looking at world trends, local architecture and cultural norms, properties can be developed as more relevant on both macro and micro levels; that is for global brands and the hotel's guests. Read on...

Jackson Thilenius

The advent of companies like Airbnb and the growth of the "sharing economy," have undoubtedly changed the hospitality industry. The question we should be asking, however, shouldn't be about if this change is simply a fad and when it will end, but rather how more traditional hotels can fit into the evolving landscape. Jackson Thilenius, principal at Retail Design Collaborative, explores how smart hospitality brands are keeping up. From boutique hotels born from giants like Hilton and Mariott to "poshtels" and out-of-the-box loyalty programs, this article offers insight into what will differentiate a successful hotel from one that will soon be forgotten. Read on...

Scott Acton

In the age of consumer experience-seeking, industries are increasingly crossing over, borrowing elements from other disciplines to create a more engaging guest experience. Scott Acton, CEO and founder of Forte Specialty Contractors, discusses how the hospitality and retail industries are capitalizing on this trend. From its beginnings with all-inclusive resorts that offer accommodation and excursions to the modern-day retailer offering build outs to engage with their products and designer brands opening hotels, hospitality and retail is only becoming more and more interconnected. Learn a few key ways to utilize the hospitality-retail concept to create the strongest ROI when designing and building for hospitality. Read on...

David Ashen

Designers and hoteliers know that while exceptional design is one component of a well-appointed property, luxury relates more closely to what guests see, touch, taste and hear. David Ashen, principal and founder of interior design and brand consulting firm dash design, shares how an elegant yet simple approach to design, moderate sensibility, exceptional service and the intangible qualities of well-considered, sensorial experiences are hallmarks of luxurious accommodations. Read on...

David Ashen

In the sea of ready options, limited service properties that define who they are get noticed. No one wants to choose a hotel by price alone and there's no need to. Because a place has reasonable prices, no longer negates the presence of good design. In fact, some guests even leave inspired to replicate the look of a hotel's public spaces or furnishings in their own homes, the hallmark of engaging, aspirational design. Like the new Hyatt Place near Cleveland, complete with spacious rooms with mini-refrigerators and free Wi-Fi; complimentary hot breakfast and Starbucks coffee; beer, wine and mixed drinks; a fitness gym; and eco-friendly heated indoor pool, today's limited service brands are pushing the envelope while staying affordable and providing guests with a memorable experience. Read on...

Scott Acton

According to IBISWorld, the theme park industry has grown strongly over the past five years to more than $18 billion at a 5.4% annual growth rate, largely driven by the operators securing intellectual property rights to major film franchises and entertainment, bringing films and characters into exciting new features and experiential rides that have been driving revenue and increasing profit margins. These theme parks have long known what intrigues customers and keeps them coming back, and smart hoteliers are now catching on to this trend. Let's take a look at how theme park attractions are impacting the hospitality industry's growth by infusing the elements of the big screen into the guest experience. Read on...

Raul Jose Gutierrez

There is no doubt that the bar is constantly being raised; the global explosion of new businesses, innovative new ideas and the strive for domination from heavy players such as Marriott have created a cycle of competition that pushes all businesses to get extra creative if they wish to have any kind of relevance in the market. Regardless of the industry, a strategic alliance will give a company competitive advantage and the opportunity to enter a broader range of expertise and resources. Partnerships should come about not only for the obvious benefits of expansion but to offer distinctive product lines and skill sets that differentiate them from the competition. Read on...

Deborah Forrest

Hotel lobbies are undergoing an exciting evolution. Architects, designers, hotel owners, and operators are re-thinking hotel lobbies and transforming them into active social hubs that are becoming the heart of hotels. With flexible designs, professionals are creating spaces that support work and play, dining venues and bars that morph throughout the day, communal tables with computers, library settings for quiet reflections, and game rooms for pure play. Read on...

David Ashen

The shift in calling a public area an art gallery first and a function space (pre-function) second was interesting to note. That's because, particularly during the last 10 years, art has become a necessary part of the story for all upper-end, boutique hotels. This is especially true in the United States, where there is scant opportunity for the display of notable, public art. Thankfully, hotels have been filling that niche, bringing excellent art to the general public and making it accessible. Now, quality art is not a nicety; it's an expectation. Read on...

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Coming up in July 2018...

Hotel Spa: Oasis Unplugged

The driving force in current hotel spa trends is the effort to manage unprecedented levels of stress experienced by their clients. Feeling increasingly overwhelmed by demanding careers and technology overload, people are craving places where they can go to momentarily escape the rigors of their daily lives. As a result, spas are positioning themselves as oases of unplugged human connection, where mindfulness and contemplation activities are becoming increasingly important. One leading hotel spa offers their clients the option to experience their treatments in total silence - no music, no talking, and no advice from the therapist - just pure unadulterated silence. Another leading hotel spa is working with a reputable medical clinic to develop a “digital detox” initiative, in which clients will be encouraged to unplug from their devices and engage in mindfulness activities to alleviate the stresses of excessive technology use. Similarly, other spas are counseling clients to resist allowing technology to monopolize their lives, and to engage in meditation and gratitude exercises in its place. The goal is to provide clients with a warm, inviting and tranquil sanctuary from the outside world, in addition to also providing genuine solutions for better sleep, proper nutrition, stress management and natural self-care. To accomplish this, some spas are incorporating a variety of new approaches - cryotherapy, Himalayan salt therapy and ayurveda treatments are becoming increasingly popular. Other spas are growing their own herbs and performing their treatments in lush outdoor gardens. Some spa therapists are being trained to assess a client's individual movement patterns to determine the most beneficial treatment specifically for them. The July issue of the Hotel Business Review will report on these trends and developments and examine how some hotel spas are integrating them into their operations.