Being such a broad and diverse industry means there is a lot of change taking place in different ways. To get an understanding of what these changes look like at a macro level, we asked the question:
What’s the future of the hospitality industry?
This is what we learned…
Paul Breslin, Managing Director of Horwath HTL, Atlanta
What will change is the hotels will deliver separate experiences in the same hotel for the different types of guests. Look for hotels to improve how they serve the leisure guests needs such as families, couples with the use of technology.
Hotels will be designed around the specific needs of the traveler with more individual personalized services and improved advance notice of what the guest expect and delivered just “in time” as expected with a wow!
Hotels and their guests will have greater connection with the local environment, providing deeper connection with the local culture, think farm to table in everything we do. Food will be fresher, local, healthier, back to basics, more organic and less of it per person, yes smaller portions. There will be more guest-oriented designs, a lobby that is ever changing, creative, innovative.
Hotels will think differently, be healthier and offer immediate satisfaction. Hotels will be a guest experience that touches all of the senses.”
Sergio Barros, Director of Sales at Tenerife Tourism
As millennials are entering more senior positions and creating new opportunities, they are going to seek out accommodations that will allow them to mix business and pleasure.
Hoteliers will need to include access to unlimited free high speed Internet, an intuitive concierge that will provide business services as well as recommendations for the hippest and trendiest venues in their city.
Travelers will need to optimize their time way and will expect a comprehensive infotainment system with updated to the minute weather, news and destination specific programming in their room.”
Scott Kalwei, Founder & Owner of Ruins Pub
No longer will you do all your own marketing, you’ll try to get your customers/employees to do that for you via social media. Shared kitchens, community kitchens, and food trucks will provide on demand kitchen equipment to lower fixed costs. Startups will be more regular with decreased startup costs. Waste will be reduced with platforms utilizing waste between businesses.
The industry as a whole will become more fluid. Change will become constant and uncertainty will be the only certainty. To stay ahead you’ll have to constantly be working smarter. Scrambling to stay ahead of technology will be the new future.”
David Jacoby, Co-Founder of Hostfully
The challenge for all accommodations is to provide an authentic experience. Airbnb is aggressively leveraging this with their live their campaign and their new Experiences offerings. Hotels need to keep up.”
Ben Guttmann, Co-Founder & Partner at Digital Natives Group
Keith Kefgen, Managing Director & CEO of AETHOS Consulting Group
Hospitality leadership will need to more creative and innovative as the industry and economies undergo dramatic change. Leaders will also have to have some “good old fashion” servant leadership as employees and guests become more fickle and have more choices in the way they work and travel. Technology will continue to drive competition and make it easier for upstarts to go “toe-to-toe” with major chains.
Ravneet Bhandari, CEO at LodgIQ
The industry will continue their focus on the Asia Pacific region, specifically China because outbound trips from China are expected to grow by 50.5% between 2016-2021. This means that China could be positioned to be one of the largest and most important tourism source markets – especially in Asia Pacific.”
Tom Engel, Principal of Boston-based TR ENGEL Group
The question we have is: what effect will rapid tech growth have on delivering great customer service? For our hotel guests who thrive on technology we believe keeping pace with their tech requirements will be a must, not an option. For guests who turn over the i-phone, the laptop, etc….the human touch better be there!”
Jeff Hands, President of TracRite Software