An enormous number of hotels are coming up across the world with an emphasis on the novelty element. From tree-top rooms to underwater locations, the list of innovative hotel ideas is endless.
No matter how unique these may be, however, the fundamentals of hospitality and hotel management will never go out of fashion. Most of these aim to provide high levels of comfort and convenience to guests. After all, consistent quality is one reason the hospitality industry can give guests to chose hotels over AirBnb.
In this article, we’ll walk you through the six main areas of hotel management that really make a difference. The way you handle them can really set you apart from the competition and determine your success as a hotelier.
Let’s get started.
The average number of parking spots per room in hotels across the US is 1.24. For hotels launched after 2010, however, this figure has decreased — mostly due to the emergence of smaller or limited-service hotels. Besides, the growing trend of ride-sharing apps has further lowered the need for parking spaces in hotels.
By and large, however, adequate and well-managed parking space is one of the primary amenities your guests will look for. This is all the more critical in cities or towns that have limited availability of public transportation, so guests have to rely on their personal vehicles.
For urban hotels, airport hotels, or resorts, providing valet parking is the best option. This can help you add 10-15% extra capacity to your parking space by allowing you to stack cars more tightly. It will also enable you to control access to your parking lot, which further enhances guest safety, convenience, and experience.
Signage plays a vital role in making your hotel a well-connected space. It ensures guests can navigate and explore the different areas easily.
Clear and prominent signage is particularly necessary at points that have a greater likelihood of bottlenecks. For instance, the check-in area. This is where your guests would just be coming in, travel-weary and perhaps, famished. By installing a digital screen for automated check-in, you can help them avoid the trouble of standing in a long queue.
You could further enhance the guest experience by sharing real-time information on restaurant opening times, current weather, local travel updates, etc. These could be displayed on a digital screen in common areas like the lobby, elevators, etc.
In-room concierge services can make a guest’s stay even more personalized and delightful. You may consider installing smaller digital devices in their rooms that provide them with information travel-related information like flight schedules or emergency notifications.
Cloud-based digital signage solutions are revolutionizing the way hotels share information with guests. The great thing about them is that you can control each and every screen from one centrally located system.
3. Breakfast area
Making your guests go to a third-party restaurant to eat in the mornings is a terrible idea. Most people just want to get out of bed and be treated to some wholesome breakfast — right there at the hotel. In fact, a survey by Hotels.com revealed that breakfast is the #1 amenity that guests worldwide look for when booking their accommodation.
As such, it’s necessary for you to set aside a neat and clean space in your hotel for breakfast. If you can’t carve out a separate space for breakfast, use your dining area while changing up the ambiance. Choose the right music that complements the morning mood and is refreshing. Likewise, you could also use a different scheme of colors for your table linen and drapes.
Also, if you can’t afford to have an elaborate breakfast spread, just make sure to have a few good-quality staples. You can never go wrong with freshly-baked bread or bagels, eggs, and good coffee.
4. Guest bathrooms
Clean, well-maintained, and adequately ventilated guest bathrooms are some of the most basic amenities that guests expect from hotels. In a survey, 95% of people said they would never book a hotel again if they encountered an unhygienic bathtub in their room.
An overwhelming number of poor hotel ratings and reviews on the internet are due to unclean bathrooms. Mold stains on the floor, shower, sink, or bathtub, inadequate water jet, discoloration/damage to equipment, and poor drainage are some of their biggest pet peeves.
The pandemic has made travelers even more sensitive toward hygiene and sanitation. There is simply no way around providing adequate attention to cleanliness and proper upkeep of your hotel bathrooms. So, ensure there is continuous hot running water and efficient drainage in your guest bathrooms with no leaky plumbing.
Besides the usual plumbing concerns, guests often have problems with the bathroom lighting. Having proper lighting in the bathrooms adds to a sense of security and enhances the guest experience. Also, adequate ventilation in bathrooms will help to avoid the accumulation of stale odors. You can also fight this off with pleasant air fresheners in the bathrooms.
A guest spends anywhere between six and 30 minutes of their day in the bathroom. It’s not surprising, therefore, that its touch and feel have a massive impact on their experience. It won’t be an exaggeration to say that the bathroom could be the difference between the selection and rejection of your property.
As soon as guests land on your property, they’d be itching to prise out the WiFi password from your staff. In a highly connected world, there is no excuse for taking your guests off the grid — even for a minute.
Your guests might want to video call their loved ones back home, stream videos online, attend meetings, or simply work on their laptops. The last two are particularly applicable to business and airport hotels. Providing seamless WiFi access is a very basic service (rather than a luxury) that guests across the world expect from any standard hotel.
So, ensure to provide high-speed internet access to your guests at all times. Check for any corners of the hotel where the speed may be low or access may be unavailable. Install extenders or other devices in places to offer WiFi services throughout the hotel premises. Have a simple and seamless mechanism and easy password for guests to connect to the internet.
Also, remember that guests expect internet services to be complimentary, so charging extra for it could be pretty off-putting. The best hotels are now going beyond free internet services. They understand the entertainment needs of their guests and want to make their stay as pleasurable as possible. To that end, many are now offering free Netflix or Chromebook streaming on their hotel room TVs.
6. Preferred vendors
Finally, set a baseline standard of the quality of items you use in the hotel. This includes items like toiletries, towels, bedding, etc.
Having unclean or poor-quality bed linen can be a massive disappointment for guests. Stains and odors can be easily detected by them (who are already skeptical about spending a night in an alien bed). So, ensure you only do business with vendors who consistently deliver the best quality goods.
As the travel, tourism, and hospitality industries are constantly evolving, keeping track of the changing tastes, preferences, and habits of travelers is necessary for your business’s survival. Whether investing in innovative technology or better parking management, hoteliers must keep their eyes open for new challenges and opportunities.
Bindy’s customizable workflow makes it easy for you to maintain your brand standards, ensure guest safety, and provide consistent experiences across all your hotels. You can easily verify bathroom and room conditions, housekeeping standards, signage, facilities and equipment maintenance, breakfast and dining setup/presentation, etc. with easy-to-use checklists and inspection photos. Plus, you can quickly report incidents to ensure speedy correction, assign tasks, and track their completion in real time. Find out how one hospitality group used Bindy to obtain insurance certificates from 300 franchisees.
Other hotel and hospitality resources
Refer to the Hotels and Hospitality category for checklists, how-tos and best practices for hotels and hospitality.
About the author:
Francesca Nicasio is retail expert, B2B content strategist, and LinkedIn TopVoice. She writes about trends, tips, and best practices that enable retailers to increase sales and serve customers better. She’s also the author of Retail Survival of the Fittest, a free eBook to help retailers future-proof their stores.