What Hotel Industry Trends to Expect in 2017

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It goes without saying that in 2016 hotel industry was recognized as a rapidly developing industry that raises solid investments. It is not strange taking into account the fact that over the last few years hotel industry has been regarded as one of the most attractive businesses. This is due to unstable position of world economy since 2013. Hotel business is the industry that can rapidly response to external changes. Hotel industry is flexible and profitable due to chance of effective work in a down economy and maximized revenue in the time of economic growth. Today hospitality industry attracts more and more attention of people who have experience in it and newcomers. It is possible to define major industry trends in 2017 taking into account main events in hotel industry that took place in 2016.

1. Collaboration

Collaboration means joint activities of people or companies aimed at achieving common goals. This is one of the most remarkable trends both in hotel industry and in many other industries. Collaborations mix completely different and even fantastic ideas and as a result new welcome and successful products emerge.

For example, one of the latest collaborations in 2016 united world's largest professional network LinkedIn and world's leading hotel group AccorHotels. Companies introduced new service called Business Check available for users of AccorHotels app. Business Check helps the user to find his/her business "contacts" currently staying in the same place and get in touch with them either directly by E-mail or via Inmail. Business Check supports 18 languages. Cooperation allows companies to exchange and get experience, new ideas to develop business, new partners and (the most important thing) new customers. Moreover, due to mutual efforts in the result of collaboration new things are created; these things attract public attention and become great news hooks.

2. Companies That Are Not Focused on Hotel Business entering Hotel Market

Due the fact that hotel business is more adaptive to external environment than any other industry it becomes highly popular among companies that are not focused directly on hotel business.

Thus, International Direct Investments Fund Hermes-Sojitz that is focused on mining projects for oil & gas and metallurgy as well as on development and food industry and implements its boutique hotel chain investment project. The chain will include 12 exclusive hotels with 20– 50 rooms located in the north of Italy. According to media reports, a well-known hotel group will manage hotels. Real estate items for construction have already been determined and will be commissioned on a step-by-step basis. An opening of a fully implemented chain is planned by the end of 2017. At the present time, construction and design of Palazzo Gallo is almost finished. It is the first boutique hotel of the future chain that is located in Piedmont, the largest region of Italy.

US lifestyle retailer West Elm and hospitality management company DDK implement one more hotel project. They launched a chain of hotels called WestElm Hotels characterized by a unique design and local color and located in five cities within the USA. An opening of the first hotel is planned by the end of 2017.

The fact that new players enter hotel market shows that the interest to hotel business is growing. Such interest is cased by various factors, e.g. Increasing flow of tourists. According to World Travel & Tourism Council, world tourist rates (arrived/departed tourists) have increased, at average, by 3.1 % advancing global economic growth forecast by 2.3 %.

3. Opening Hotels on behalf of Well-Known Brands

The trend of opening hotels on behalf of fashion brands is still under way. Fashion has moved beyond clothes and accessories. Today fashion is a global concept that helps to introduce new products in this or that way related to well-known names and famous brands to the market. Versace, Armani, Missoni, Moschino and other well-known brands open their own hotels all over the world.

A new luxury hotel from Bulgari jewelry manufacturer that will be opened in Moscow in 2019 is just one more proof. This project will be seventh hotel together with others opened under Bulgari Hotels and Resorts brand all over the world. Other brands keep up with famous jewelry company. For example, Italian fashion house Missoni plans to open four hotels located in Kuwait, Cape Town, Oman and Brazil. Now a hotel on behalf of Missoni functions in Great Britain.

4. Management under Large Hotel Operators

World's largest hotel groups, e.g. Marriott, Accor, Hilton, Wyndham, etc. close deals and buy hotels all over the world to expand their chains. Both luxury hotels and lower class hotels attract attention of hotel operators.

There are obvious benefits that a hotel gets from a famous brands. First of all, well-known name, i.e. guests are sure that they will have certain service level that local hotels can not offer. World service quality standards offered in branded chain hotels are indicators for guests who visit a country or a city for the first time. Secondly, use of brands in hotel projects allows to attract hotel long-standing customers who visited the hotel before. It is necessary to point out that often this or that chain becomes corporate partner for companies that make the chain really profitable. Finally, in addition to evident profits cooperations with brands offer other advantages. For example, advertising, positioning, servicing, training of the personnel, concept development and design form the proven development and promotion scheme for existing brands. The scheme is set and proven after years of its implementation. This fact allows to relieve some pressure that the project manager has to deal with.

Due to these advantages owners of local hotels will go on closing deals with major hotel market players in order to save and develop their business.

5. Exclusive Luxury and Customized Services

Well-known name supported by world quality standards is not enough to make a hotel project successful. Moreover, new hotel industry trends must be taken into account.

A modern traveler is looking for more than just a place to sleep and spend time when free from entertainments. Now tourists tend to choose hotels with specific features that offer them unusual environment. Such places are called boutique hotels.

Boutique hotel is a small hotel with about 40-50 rooms. Staff in such hotels does its best to offer guests exclusive luxury and high-level services. Attention to such hotels from well-known chains and big companies proves that boutique hotels are really popular.

For example, famous hotel group Marriott opened a chain of "boutiques" called Autograph Collection Hotels. Interior and exterior designs of each hotel are characterized by high quality, creativity, atmosphere of wealth and peculiar features. Autograph Collection Hotels are aimed at free independent travelers who prefer something unpredictable to standard hotels.

Sports elite also follows this trend. CR7 Hotel is one more interesting hotel project that proves that "boutiques" are highly popular. CR7 boutique hotel is a result of cooperation between one of Europe's largest hotel operators Pestana Group and famous football player Cristiano Ronaldo. The hotel is located in Funchal (Portugal), administrative center and largest sea port of Madeira. According to Dionisio Pestana, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Pestana Group, CR7 boutique hotel chain will expand. Thus, in 2017 Pestana CR7 hotels shall be opened in Madrid and New York.

The fact that boutique hotels become more and more attractive for investors allows to conclude that customers' priorities change. Today a hotel is more than just a place for temporary staying, for guests it is more like home and it has to look like home. World hospitality industry develops rapidly. Changes in priorities of large hotel operators concerning development of chains are evident; more and more market players from other industries emerge and democratization takes place: hotels try to attract both wealthy and middle-class guests. Due to these and other external factors new hotel industry trends are developed. We shall witness them in 2017.

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