Year by year, the way people travel – and their expectations for hospitality – are evolving. As a leading architecture and interior design firm in Colorado and across the country, we feel it’s imperative to stay up to date on the latest trends in the dynamic hospitality industry.
As we look ahead to another transformative year of hospitality projects in the Mile High City, we turn our attention to what leading trends we can expect to see in hotel design in 2020.
- Experiential design matters
Long gone are the utilitarian days when hotels were just a place to rest your head for the night. Guests are more and more desiring a hospitality experience that makes them feel immersed in the culture of their destination.
Through the clever use of authentic design, this can be accomplished to create a cohesive, experiential hospitality experience.
For example, the Maven Hotel at Dairy Block, a full-block development, provides a unique experience for guests by blurring the line between what’s public and private. The expanded experiential lobby of the 172-key hotel includes an event space, bar, restaurant and various retail kiosks. Pairing the old with the new, the hotel elegantly references the old industrial site of the project with vintage and gritty elements, while capturing a chic, contemporary feel.
Artwork has also become an essential differentiator in the hospitality world, changing the way guests interact with a space and ultimately supporting repeat business for the hotel. For example, the Hilton Garden Inn Denver Union Station art collection curated by local firm NINE dot ARTS powerfully celebrates the hotel’s place within the Downtown Denver neighborhood. The lobby triptych was designed specifically for the hotel by local artist Jason Thielke and features a mash-up of images reflecting familiar Denver landmarks and neighborhoods.
- Encouraging social interaction through shared spaces
In a digital age where many of our social interactions take place in the confines of our electronic devices, the hospitality industry will continue to place an emphasis on face-to-face interaction through the use of open shared spaces.
The Moxy Hotel in Denver Cherry Creek places a distinct emphasis on social interaction through the use of 3,000 square feet of communal space with fun, whimsical additions like a foosball and ping pong table. The hotel also features social areas including communal seating for larger gatherings and intimate seating zones for smaller, quieter rendezvous.
Our upcoming Hotel St. Cloud project in Cañon City will also encourage social connection with a spacious, interactive lobby with a private event space, bar and lounge, and a second-floor community space that will invite visitors and locals alike to gather for celebrations and events.
- Sustainable design is more than a trend
A recent study shows that two-thirds of consumers are belief-driven, meaning they will choose to not buy from businesses they believe aren’t taking enough accountability for their climate-change contributions. It’s clear that sustainable design is more than a trend; it’s a necessity.
The entire JOHNSON NATHAN STROHE leadership team is LEED-certified, and we strive to deliver projects for our clients that address the long-term impact on the environment and surrounding community.
Our team designed the 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 also promotes a variety of water conservation methods including motion-activated water-bottle-filling stations to discourage the use of single-use plastics.
We are thrilled to see prominent hospitality companies showing their commitment to eco-friendly practices. In late 2019, Marriott announced plans to eliminate single-use shower toiletry products, which is predicted to save 1.7 million pounds of plastic and reduce its annual plastic usage on amenities by 30%.
- Empowered, not dominated, by technology
The technological savviness of today’s average hotel guest is far greater from one 10 or even five years ago. As the world becomes more digitized, the hospitality industry needs to also embrace these changes in order to improve the overall guest experience.
From the ease of the booking, check-in and check-out experience to the availability of digital amenities such as wi-fi, travelers expect hotels to be reasonably technologically advanced.
However, with incoming trends in the next decade such as “dopamine fasting” or the desire to cut out dopamine triggers such as technology and social media, guests should still feel able to easily disconnect from their screens when desired. Introducing a more informal concierge service, many hotels are equipping their employees to be knowledgeable about the surrounding area, so guests don’t feel the need to hop online to find out where to shop, dine and explore. Also, including readily available games, books and wellness activities such as onsite spas and exercise facilities are ideal options for helping guests easily unplug.
Here’s to another decade creating beautiful hotel spaces that leave a lasting impression for guests long after their stay!