Affordable hotels are doing very well.But these days we aren’t talking of cheap chain hotels, but of hotels with style and design, ready to host a new generation of guests: the ‘millennial’ travellers. Children of this day and age, very tech-savy, never without their devices. They have some money to spend but want value for their bank notes. They want an experience they will remember, not the average thing. So what is there you can encounter in a so-called Millennial hotel?
Low-cost and high-style
The last few years Marriott International has opened a number of brand new affordable hotels in the chain they call Moxy. The first one opened in Milan, Italy; Munich, Frankfurt and some other European and American cities followed suit. The Moxy boutique budget hotels have compact rooms that are well designed and have floor-to-ceiling art on the wall. Comfortable armchairs and lots of plug sockets and a large TV. The comfort of a 4 star hotel, the ambiance of a hostel with a cool bar in the lounge, free wifi everywhere, workplaces, a library and a self-service for food and drinks 24/7 rather than a restaurant where dining cost you an arm and a leg.
Hotels think the travellers of today are only communicating through social media and smartphones. That’s why you will see no receptionist in a Moxy lobby anymore. You can check in through an app and a Twitter concierge will give you tips if you want them. You can Facetime with staff members 24/7 through Starwood Hotels’ app and soon you will also be able to choose a room and unlock it through your smartphone in a Hilton hotels.
Social media is their platform now
Hotels caught up and know now you would rather book a room with them after seeing a photo on Instagram e.g. than a poster at a station. Travellers are stimulated to share their views on the hotel where they have been staying through hashtags. That way many guests can have a good idea of the place prior to booking. Hotels also know they can get lots of new guests through social media, so they try to make their marketing efforts go viral using all the tricks in the book and by offering ‘experiences’ that are either authentic or alternative. Those are the experiences guests will want to share on Facebook and Instagram, where potential new guests may look at. There was for instance the Instagram hit of a floor-to-ceiling photo of a ‘tasty’ half-naked tattooed man brandishing an iron in the ironing room at Moxy Milan. That’s the way hotels like it!
Individual chain hotels
Back in the old days, hotel guests liked the idea of their favourite chain hotel looking and working completely the same all over the world. The ‘millennial’ chains know their guests want something else, something a bit more special without paying too much. That’s why hotels try to give each of their new branches something individual, with fun bars and comfy arm chairs all over the lobby to sit in, relax and enjoy a cocktail.
Forget room service
Millennial travellers don’t sit in their room and eat something from room service before going to sleep. They want to try out the latest restaurant or a nearby food truck. That’s why millennial hotels don’t do room service anymore. You can get something tasty to eat 24/7 from the vending machines or drink a cocktail in the bar, both in the lobby.
A smart micro room does not have a wardrobe, it features pegs to hang your clothes on. There is simply not enough room for a wardrobe let alone for a trouser press.
Hostels are hip and posh
To choose a historic property for your accommodation does not mean you are a wealthy person. Hostels are getting more and more hip these days and even have stately homes turned into a hostel. If you book a bed at Safestay Holland Park, you go back over 400 years (the building dates from 1605 to be exact). You stay in the middle of Holland Park, one of the finest green places of the city, for just £15.50 a bed.