Using Hotel Amenities as a Tool

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Using hotel’s amenities as a tool
Iveta Per
Florida International University

Abstract
This paper summarizes my research in area of lodging and hotel industry, focusing on importance, ordering and controlling amenities in hotels. I have gather information from hospitality industry journal articles, web sites and also directly from facilities to gain knowledge on importance of hotels amenities and guest perceived value of these amenities. This research also seeks to understand how the hotels can use amenities to attract guest, promote the property, increase sales and set themselves apart from others.

Using hotel’s amenity as a tool
Amenity is defined in dictionary as any feature that provides comfort, convenience, or pleasure. This is especially true in lodging and hospitality industry where all types of travelers seek comfort and convenience. Hotels use amenities as tool. Amenities can be used as selling point and they also help differentiate one from other. According to Trip advisor 36% of hotel owners will use special amenities to attract guests this year (www.tripAdvisor.com).

Many times amenity becomes associated with the brand, such as Heavenly bed for Westin Hotels, Bliss Spa for W hotels, or Red Door Spa for Wyndham. At time when guest is booking hotel, the search engine will help search for hotel with particular amenities that are important to specific type of traveler. This can be business center for business traveler, spa, for girl’s getaway, or golf course for avid golfer. There are amenities that became essential to all hotels as guests put extreme importance on it. Last year, according to PricewaterhouseCoopers, the hotel industry spent $5.5 billion on capital upgrades, much of it for amenities, services and systems that directly or indirectly affect guest service (Stoesssel, E., & Watkins, E. 2008).

Several polls were conducted to gauge the importance and the perceived value of hotel offered amenities. Importance of hotel amenities vary by segment, but importance of wireless connection ranks first across the board.

Based on recent Hotel Guest Satisfaction Index study by J.D. Power and Associates response of 53,000 guests who stayed in a hotel between May 2009 and June 2010 below information was compiled.

Additional poll was completed at Luxury and Resort Travel and yield below results:
In-room internet access came in first place with 41.18% of the votes. In the past this amenity was associated with business traveler, but this is no longer the case. While still on top of the list for business travel, the ability to keep in touch with family, research local attraction or watch movie while you're away is important for leisure traveler as well.

With 17.65% “24-hour room service," is in the second place on the list on favorite amenities. This in convenient way to have your meal after long business meeting or can be romantic setting for a couple wanting to depart from usual restaurant venue.

In third place, with 15.69% of the votes is comfortable bed and pillow. Good examples are Westin hotels. This is along with their motto, Westin difference. Since 1999, more than 75 million Westin hotel and resort guests have enjoyed the comfort and luxury of the Westin Heavenly Bed, which is now even available for purchase so you can bring the Westin comfort to your home (www.starwoodhotels.com) . Following the vision of Heavenly Bed, Westin introduced the Heavenly Bath for guests by offering industry firsts such as an exclusive dual showerhead and a revolutionary curved shower rod t. Their signature spa amenities include cotton bath towels and custom-designed velour bathrobes. (www.starwoodhotels.com) In 2003 Cunard became first ship to offer pillow concierge concept; this amenity gives guests the option to choose firmness and quality of pillows and to provide maximum comfort.

With 13.73% of the votes the satellite, flat-screen TV received fourth place. The relatively low...
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