You can be forgiven for acquainting the idea of "change" with the word "radical". Often change is punctuated by a glitter cannon. In software terms, innovation is celebrated, advertised, and delivered with a great big neon arrow. Yet, when we think of innovation, we rarely think "hotels".
But that doesn't mean that hotels aren't evolving. In fact, the guest experience is constantly being transformed. Here are 3 things that subtly change the hotel experience.
The eco-friendly guest experience
You can say a lot about millennials. You can (if you’re that way inclined) ridicule their dress, their music, and their outlook on life. But there are two things that are important to remember: they’re the future customer of every industry, and they tend to care a lot more about certain aspects of modern life – particularly when it comes to the environment.
Travelers are acutely aware of their carbon footprint. Moreover, they're consuming products that openly offer the same values. That includes the hotels they book.
Hotels that responsibly source recyclable goods, or make an obvious effort to conserve energy in rooms are making an impact. Expect more air-conditioning units that turn off when you're absent from the room. Don't be surprised by paperless hotels and downloadable restaurant menus.
The good news? An eco-friendly guest experience is desirable. It's also cost effective.
The fully connected experience
It starts with those Wi-Fi-media-infused coffee machines. You know the ones - they tell you the latest on Trump's wall whilst you’re waiting for your latte. It's a small addition but its' an important one. The guest experience is only augmented by more connectivity.
Some hotels are already using smart televisions to deliver special offers to their guests (whether they’re in their room or busting reps in the gym). Now the hotels are wrapping their loving arms around the technological revolution, it will move in leaps and bounds from here.
I’m not suggesting toasters that play Radio 1. But it stands to reason that we may see tablets installed on tables wherein you can place orders, or play Angry Birds. Technology, in all industries, is becoming more prevalent. Subtly, the hospitality industry is putting more and more of the guest experience online.
The "more personalisation, please" experience
It's becoming a buzzword isn't it? Personalisation. Somehow, the world is automating everything to the point that we only see a human when they’re running back from the bathroom. Yet, we crave a more personalised experience.
PMS platforms are working hard to make sure that they’re offering a service that indulges the nuanced idiosyncrasies of their guests. In the office, behind the singular receptionist, the PMS is humming and clicking. Using the data that their system harvests, hotels are now working towards creating as many guest experiences as there are bookings.
Smart televisions provide rooms with engaging and targeted content aimed directly at the individual guest. Expect more of this. Expect recommendations rooted in the online experience and brought to life in your hotel experience.
You’ll notice that there’s nothing radical above. Hotels are already moving into the future. And there are no flying cars or AI driven androids. That is the art of the guest experience; a hotel’s motivation and direction summed up in one word…
Nothing glamourous. No glitter cannons. These changes are drawing hotels into providing an experience that can't easily be separated into distinct clunky steps. Just one fluid experience that relaxes the guest.