As the old saying goes, hard times foster growth.
With this in mind, it’s no surprise that the hospitality sector is changing so rapidly. Hotels have had a tough year.
2020 introduced challenges for every facet of commercial real estate – but travel-based industries saw unparalleled disruption. For the first time, travel bans and market closures put all tourism on hold. Whether for work or play, there were no guests to be found in vacant hotels for months.
Reopening markets brought reprieve for many CRE sectors, but hotels still had a lot of work to do. The lifting of official travel restrictions simply was not enough to attract guests back into hotels. Social distancing concerns for health and safety kept guests at bay, preventing hotels from seeing any relief.
The Hotel Space is Reasserting its Value
As a result of the unsatisfactory market climate and negative sentiments from the public, the hotel space has been forced to reassert its value. Over the last few months, hotels have been working to change up their gameplans and re-calibrate their models.
Since these efforts have kicked off, we’re seeing hotel robots, tech-powered sanitation, and effortless social distancing dominate the hotel scene. These developments have made hotels cleaner, safer, and healthier than ever.
But, with tourism remaining notably low, hotels needed to further their efforts and find a new target demographic.
The New Strategy: WFH Professionals
Instead of jet setting leisure-lovers, hotels have shifted their focus to the world of business.
Right now, hotels are offering their rooms as personal office spaces to attract business crowds. It’s been months since offices have been closed, leaving a massive population of workers without an official place to work.
The WFH trend has been difficult to adapt to, forcing households to try and fit everything into a single space. At this point, many professionals are tired of working from home – but they’re also not ready to go back to bustling office spaces.
As a solution, hotels have introduced the solo office space.
Hotels across the country have begun offering daily rates for out-of-office professionals looking for a peaceful place to do their work. Of course, they’ll also gain the added bonus of access to all of the amenities the hotel has to offer. Dining, fitness, pools, and other luxury options are attracting business people to give the daily hotel workspace a whirl.
Blending Hospitality with Office Needs
This isn’t the first time that hotels have considered adopting professionally-focused strategies to enhance their business models. Even before the pandemic, when remote working was becoming an increasingly popular trend, hotels were dipping their toes into a flex-space system.
The contemporary hotel model has been seeking to create a place that perfectly adapts to a guest’s evolving needs. Whether it be work, play, or relaxation, the future of hotels continues to point towards flexibility.
Looking ahead, commercial real estate professionals should be considering how this innovative hotel model will adjust when offices finally do re-open and welcome their teams back again. Keep your eyes on the rapidly-changing market to see what happens next.