Hotels evolve to become "offices of the future"
Almasalla Travel News – By Ashraf El gedawy – Hotels are increasingly renting rooms to business and leisure guests for "microstays" during the day, reveals the WTM Global Trends Report 2013 released yesterday (Monday 4 November).
Despite the continuing trend of video-conferencing, face-to-face meetings are still favoured for high-profile business deals and gatherings, says the report, produced in association with Euromonitor International.
The WTM Global Trends Report 2013, unveiled on the first day of World Travel Market in London, states more business guests are seeking day-use rooms for various reasons, including a chance to relax between appointments or flights, or workspaces for meetings at the hotels.
Meanwhile, more leisure tourists are also taking advantage of the flexibility of day rooms, to “get away from it all” for a few hours.
The cost of a room is 30% to 70% lower than an overnight stay. For example, InterContinental Hotels in France charge €150 for rent or day-use, instead of €400-500 for an overnight stay.
The US and UK markets are the most advanced for business-related microstays, but the trend is catching on in many more markets in Western Europe.
Aggregator Dayuse Hotels was founded in 2010 and has seen significant growth in sales, and others in the market include Between5and9.com and ByHours.com.
Hotel firms are also cashing in on the concept: Westin is testing ‘Tangent at Westin’ which provides meeting space for small groups, while Marriott has introduced ‘Workspace on Demand’, offering workspaces across the US on an hourly basis.
David Lebbé, Chief Executive and Founder of Dayuse Hotels, said: “We see significant opportunities for growth in light of the increase in bookings and revenues.
“Our next move will be to target secondary cities in countries already serviced, including Washington, California, Baltimore and Miami, and new markets like Brazil, Russia and Canada.”
Reed Travel Exhibitions, Senior Director, World Travel Market, Simon Press said: “The signs are that hotels will see a stronger rate of recovery in 2013, with as much as 6.9% growth in hotel value sales. With growth set to stabilise at a lower level in 2014, new trends such as these ‘microstays’ will help hoteliers to sustain their progress.”
Caroline Bremner, Euromonitor International Head of Travel and Tourism Research, said: “These developments all suggest that hotels will become ‘offices of the future’, and this is very much likely to become a global trend.
“Our busy lifestyles mean more of us are ‘24-hour travellers’ so facilities offered by hotels on this day-use basis are bound to be increasingly important.”