What makes a luxury hotel, Luxury?

When talking about Luxury hotels, there are no set standards such as stars rating. According to Chris Fradin, VP Europe for the #ForbesTravelGuide, which independently rates hotels, a luxury hotel is the accommodation which is able to offer “elements of luxury” reflected in the detailed attention, the level of sumptuous comfort, and the choices and convenience provided.

Boutique hotels and the so-called lifestyle hotels can be also considered as #luxuryhotels. They, differently than large hotels, have the opportunity to get very intimate and personal with their guests, while offering very high quality services, based on priceless experiences that involve extensive use of #storytelling.

Some define luxury hotels based on a high price, while others focus on the establishment of one-to-one relationships, the authenticity, the personalised service as well as the unique and unforgettable experience that cannot be replicated, and which become #winningfactors.

Indeed, luxury hotels have been around for years, but only in the past 20 years, they have become more widely known due to specific marketing efforts and a change in the hotel industry. Back in the day,, we did not have all the luxury hotels we can now choose from. But why do we have them in the thousands? Well, simply because the world got richer and money has become more diluted (Aaron Kaupp, GM of #RoyalMonceau, Paris).

And, we are in the “ego era”, as Francois Delahaye, #PlazaAthenee’, GM stated. Whether the employee joining us is proud to list us on his CV or the owner and guests are selective about high profile properties to invest in or stay at. Those 3 pillars - employees, hotel owners, guests - are sensitive to where they work, what they acquire or where they stay. And in today's’ media-dominated environment, it is important that what can be known about you first is the image you are keen to project.

“Luxury, it seems, can be a small thing such as creating a meaningful experience or showing you care. But large or small, it is supposed to create emotional connections with people, the product and the brand.“ Things in luxury can speak louder than words and services are often offered to create that “wow!” factor that goes beyond expectations (Dr. Suzanne Godfrey, EHL Hospitality Insights.com). Definitely, not an easy task to accomplish if we think how diverse each individual guest can be and how his or her expectations, habits, culture, religion and taste are.

So, what makes a luxury hotel, luxury?

Is it the service that it is offered? The quick and easy check-in or check-out? The easy upgrades or the modern technology? The excellent dining or spa experience or the personal touch and professionalism of the staff? How about the guest activities and amenities?

Yes, all these things are applicable to every luxury hotel around the world. But, we keep trying to define what a Luxury hotel is, while it should conclusively be left to the customer who is in the position of getting exactly what he or she wants, when he or she wants it, how he or she wants it, and ultimately before he or she has actually asked for it.

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Angela, MD