By Juan Carlos Ayala, Senior Project Manager, OBMI
While the Caribbean’s beautiful beaches make a wonderful reason to retreat to the region for a vacation, hoteliers and designers are working hard to create exclusive amenities and experiences for guests to enjoy, which go beyond the breathtaking landscapes. With hundreds of options available for guests, creating a unique market position for your hotel through style and experience can help you win and keep customers. Before you decide on the next investment for improving your property, consider implementing one of these concepts to differentiate your hotel from the rest.
1. Arts & Cultural Exhibitions
One way to create a unique hotel is to feature an art collection of up-and-coming local artists and recognizable names whose works can serve as a modern-day gallery at your property, making it a cultural destination in its own right. The best art-centric hotels consider space planning and proper lighting to effectively draw the eye toward paintings, sculptures, and installations. Whether they are original or limited-edition items commissioned exclusively for the hotel, the artwork can be displayed in guest rooms and public spaces to intrigue guests.
2. Gastronomy & Mixology Offerings
Hotel bars and restaurants aren’t just for eating and drinking anymore; they’ve become gathering spots. From specialty beverage bars to resorts that grow their own food, guests can enjoy an exclusive experience conjured up freshly for them to sample and enjoy. A great example is the OBMI-designed Hermitage Bay resort, with its Organic Kitchen Garden and its own resident master Gardner, Kempton, who will take guests on a farm tour and teaches them about the food.
3. Music & Entertainment Showcase
To gain a competitive edge, hospitality providers need to deliver a differentiated and immersive experience. One way to do that is through great design for entertainment spaces. Bars, lobbies, and restaurants offer the opportunity for entertainment, making them social hubs. Caribbean hotel designers can help by creating interconnected spaces that will transform the experience from just an F&B venue to a social experience, where guests can immerse themselves in local cultures such as reggae, calypso, and soca music; just to name a few.
Programs may be open to both guests and drop-ins, so don’t be surprised if you see some locals looking for a little R&R at one of your classes or activities. It’s important to invest in destination-making spaces, so your property can show off the local community while giving it a competitive edge in the market.