Hospitality Trend: Is Nature the New Luxury?

Hospitality Trend: Is Nature the New Luxury?

As a top architecture and interior design firm in Colorado and across the country, we make it a priority at JOHNSON NATHAN STROHE to stay on top of industry trends. One hospitality trend we’ve seen emerging across hotels? The desire to bring nature inside.

Today, travelers yearn to escape from the harsh confines of the concrete jungle, for a chance to reunite with the soft, authentic beauty of the outdoors. The hospitality industry can provide this experience in a number of ways – think plenty of indoor plants, ample natural light and easy access to outdoor amenities. Similarly, the use of raw, natural materials such as wood and stone can create a grounding experience for visitors.

These shifts in hospitality expectations help inform the way we design.

For example, JOHNSON NATHAN STROHE designed the luxurious, yet rustic Perry Hotel Key West to embrace its waterfront location on Stock Island. Taking cues from its surroundings, we blended sharp, rugged elements with warm, ocean-inspired touches throughout the hotel. Exposed concrete columns, a mix of concrete and reclaimed teak flooring and the custom tables speak to the materials typically seen on the island. A key design feature at The Perry are floor-to-ceiling windows that invite guests to the nearby marina to enjoy nearby activities including paddle boarding, jet skiing, fishing, snorkeling, diving, sailing, yachting and ecotours. 

At The Maven Hotel at Dairy Block, our JOHNSON NATHAN STROHE team utilized floor-to-ceiling windows at the visual terminus of each guest corridor to let sunlight fill the space and enhance wayfinding. Planters at each of these locations house over 6,000 succulent plants, all grown locally in Wheat Ridge, Colorado.

The Perry Hotel at Key West dons various succulents and plants on a lobby wall. 

As more people take the initiative to reduce their carbon footprint and embrace sustainability practices, there will be a rise in travelers seeking out hotels that follow the same path.

At JOHNSON NATHAN STROHE, sustainability is more than a trend we follow; it’s an essential pillar of our values that guides how we do business and approach design. Our entire leadership is LEED-certified, and we strive to deliver projects for our clients that address the long-term impact on the environment and surrounding community. 

For example, our team designed the newly opened Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station to operate 30 percent more efficiently than the requirements of ASHRAE 90.1, an energy standard for building energy efficiency. The hotel strives to cut down water usage with a variety of conservation methods including motion-activated water-bottle-filling stations to discourage the use of single-use plastics. 

Embracing sustainability and bringing nature indoors is a simple, yet effective way to boost the health and wellbeing of hotel guests. By incorporating natural materials throughout both common and guest spaces, hotels can create a more relaxed and inviting atmosphere for their patrons that will have them coming back time and time again. 

Another JNS project, The Boulder HGI, incorporates nature in the form of a waterfall in the lobby. Photo credit to Dennis Bennett.