Boutique Hotels Driving Trends
August 24, 2017 10:32am
By Frances Kiradjian
Even for an industry known for being in a constant state of flux, the hospitality industry was barely prepared for the sea change that came over it with the arrival of boutique and luxury lifestyle hotels two decades ago.
The repercussions of that change are still being felt today, as the boutique sector has consistently remained a driving force for changing trends in the hotel industry. From design havens to signature restaurants and a focus of local suppliers, many of the big stories of recent years have originated in the boutique and luxury lifestyle environment.
This is due in no small part to the independence of these establishments – being free of allegiance to any large chain leaves them free to innovate and experiment. Also, boutique hotels are often themed around an overarching concept or vision – an approach that allows them freedom to try new things and often this leads to the creation of trends. Boutique is also relatively new in the overall history of hotels, as the big-chain era dominated for such a long time, so the sector still has the advantage of feeling relatively fresh.
What this means in practice for those of us working in the boutique and luxury lifestyle sector is that we should focus on innovation, rather than trying to appeal to an established idea of perfection. If novelty and originality are our strengths, then we sell ourselves short if we strive for tried and tested ideas of luxury. We are in the fast lane of the hospitality industry, early adopters who will be renowned for outrunning the herd and finding the next big thing first.
Staying abreast and keeping an eye on others in the industry is also must. Find what works; borrow an idea; add three of your own and give it your personal twist. Recent trends that have surfaced in the marketplace include the creation of unique vacation experiences and a tight focus on the local and specific; high-design interiors and one-off collaborations; and new technology making hotels customizable and interactive. As for what will bubble up next? Well, you’re in the perfect place to find out.
So, will boutique and luxury lifestyle hotels continue to drive trends for years to come? They’ll definitely stay focused on trends as top of mind, but there are other rival factors at play right now.
The soaring popularity of short-term rental services such as Airbnb, although often aimed at a different demographic to boutique hotels, have changed the vacation landscape. The rise of ‘soft brands’, with large corporations chasing the boutique dollar, also plays a part, as now we have another force (with a huge marketing budget) shaping the public perception of the forward-thinking hotel of today. And, of course, it’s impossible to discount the influence of apps and social media in transforming the way we view and interact with the world around us, with Silicon Valley whizzes sparking countless mini hospitality trends.
Nonetheless, by being independent, agile and unafraid to try the new, and by putting personality and intelligence to the core of their business model, boutique and luxury lifestyle hotels are guaranteed to lead exciting trends for many years to come. Read the full report in the BLLA fall issue of the Stay Boutique™ Magazine being distributed at the leadership conference in Los Angeles October 3-5.
Tags: frances kiradjian,
boutique & lifestyle lodging association,
stay boutique leadership conference
Founder of the Boutique & Lifestyle Lodging Association (BLLA), Frances Kiradjian, a 25-year hospitality and travel industry seasoned professional, created BLLA to give a voice to independent properties as well as small brands around the world, offering them the opportunity and the means to compete on a level playing field with major hotel companies. BLLA serves more than 750 members, including hotels and the suppliers that sustain them.
Frances states why she created the BLLA. “My passion for independent boutique & lifestyle hotels are what drove me to create a place where leaders in this hotel sector can meet on common ground,” said Frances. “I wanted to institute programs for enhanced awareness to global travelers and offer vendors the opportunity to focus their marketing efforts through sponsorship of BLLA programs, events & conferences.”
Kiradjian is a graduate of the highly respected Marshall School of Business at the University of Southern California (USC).
Contact: Frances Kiradjian
2018 TIEWN Conference Mobilizes Women in Hospitality on International Women's Day
Women on Boards in Travel and Hospitality
Boutique & Lifestyle Lodging Association (BLLA) Announces New Inner Circle Club Members Who Have Joined for 2018
Pushing Boutique Forward!
Boutique & Lifestyle Lodging Association (BLLA) Connects Travel and Hospitality Industry Executives for 5th Annual Executive Women's Conference in Los Angeles
Educating the Boutique Community: Take-Aways from Stay Boutique Leadership Conference
BLLA’s 2017 Stay Boutique Awards Presented to Industry Executives & Innovators
BLLA Redefines the Meaning of Boutique Hospitality at Annual Stay Boutique Leadership Conference, in Los Angeles
Elevate Your F&B Game at the Stay Boutique Leadership Conference!
Boutique & Lifestyle Lodging Association (BLLA) Launches Stay Boutique™ Leadership Conference in Los Angeles
Dream Training Programs for Boutique Hotels
Shape-Shifting Soft-Brands – Trends and Popularity Talk
A Look at the Future of the Boutique Hotel Industry: BLLA’s 2017 Sentiment Survey Results Revealed
The Complexities of Boutique Hotel Development
Why Are Other Industries Attracted to the Boutique Hotel Sector?
Major Hospitality Powerhouses Reveal Key Trends at Annual Boutique Hotel Investment Conference (BLLA)
Embracing New Technologies and Hotel Security in Our World Today
Other Methods of Garnering Guest Loyalty
The New Boutique Hotel Lobbyists
Boutique “Soft Brands” Defined
Please login or register to post a comment.