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The hotel industry is one that is ever evolving. Each year we see bigger, fresher, more innovative trends, some of which last the distance, others, which fall flat. Hotels today are working harder and smarter to stay ahead of the increasing competition, and to deliver not only on customer expectations, but service excellence.

Just like last year,  this year  is set to be one of great change. So what can we expect to see shaping guest experience for the hotel industry in 2017?

AN EYE FOR DESIGN

Once considered to be reserved for boutique and luxury hotels, slick design is now the norm across the board, as leading hotels refresh their tired interiors and add a little more style into the mix.

From plush furnishings adorning luxury resorts, to clean, modern and minimalist decor in more budget-friendly properties, guests today now have an expectation for cosmetic appeal. Thanks to the emergence of visually-led social media channels, great design not only meets guests expectations, but also encourages exposure of a hotel’s brand through social sharing.

LOCAL AREA FOCUS

The guest experience isn’t simply about the ameneties they can enjoy whilst inside the hotel. Though many hotels forget this. It’s now becoming increasingly important to provide guests with options outside of the hotel grounds. Great walks, fun days out for families, must-see museums and shopping hotspots… this is what guests are really looking for when considering their hotel of choice.

Not only does this appeal to culture seekers, families and groups, but well executed promotion of local ameneties and activities can also encourage more short breaks, as opposed to one night stays. The Vicarage in Cheshire is perfectly positioned for shopaholics, culture vultures, foodies and families.  They’re only too happy to reccommend things to do during your stay.

There needs to be a much more holistic approach to overall guest experience in the hotel industry. We should expect to see hotels considering the persona of their guests, and delivering options based on their expectations.

We’ve already seen glimpses of this, especially in the luxury end of the spectrum, but we should expect more hotels in other categories doing the same, too. And if they aren’t, they need to start thinking about them sooner than later.

GOING BACK TO OUR ROOTS

We hear it all the time, the hotel industry is fundamentally about the guest. Delivery a great guest experience, meeting guest expectations and achieving guest satisfaction. Though, sadly, thanks to the pressure of tight revenue targets and tough competition, hotels can quickly lose their personal touch in favour of fast profit.

Hotels and event spaces are starting to re-understand the importance of humanity, and will start to focus on training their teams to focus on a passionate guest experience over a sales-heavy service. Fishmore Hall delivers a premium level of service as standard, with friendly staff and meticulous attention to guests’ needs. If you haven’t visited already, it’s one I’d recommend…

RESHAPING LUXURY

Luxury today isn ‘t just about serving the finest coffee or using the most high-end spa products.  Luxury now extends to the experience a guest enjoys.

The new ‘lean luxury’ focuses more on delivering an experience that leaves a guest feeling relaxed, well-catered for and feeling special, as opposed to being offered high quality products and materials. Le Saint-James in Bordeaux executes modern luxury perfectly.

That’s not to say that high quality products will be considered lower value. Just that a more tailored, unique service will be considered to be of higher value than luxury branded goods.

DIGITAL DEVELOPMENTS

Hotels, event spaces, wedding venues and resorts are in the process of making significant investments in technology to provide a more efficient and interactive service for guests. The likes of beacon technology, digital menus and in-room entertainment will continue to evolve, making for a much more streamlined and seamless service. After siginificant investment, Jurys Inns Hotels have transformed a number of hotels, integrating cutting-edge technology, WiFi and event tech systems. Definitely one group setting the benchmark for evolution…

 

Wordsmithery by Cath | Perception Sales & Marketing

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