Designing for Luxury Travellers
Luxury travel is growing faster and stronger than ever before, outpacing projections of overall travel growth rates and growing fastest in the entire luxury goods and services industry. For those in the luxury hospitality industry, this is no surprise and great news!
The luxury traveler, however, is known to be the most discerning guest and has ever-changing needs. Therefore, it is critical to understand and shift to meet their needs. Although all travelers vary, there are several trends that are consistent with today’s luxury traveler. When these trends are designed into your property, they can become a competitive advantage and lasting fond memory for your guests.
We know that luxury does not mean the same thing to everyone, however, it’s clear that in mature markets, luxury has evolved to become increasingly measured in terms of experiences rather than things. One key trend driving the future of luxury travel is the shift in values from the material to the experiential, and now to transformational experiences, that offer authentic life-changing travel to an exclusive segment of society that already has, and experienced it all.
For designers, this means a property must be flexible to accommodate the property’s diverse programming that will allow guests to transform themselves by participating, engaging, learning and giving back. A property’s architectural layout and design is the stage for this enrichment programming that enhances the guest’s experience by reflecting the community’s character and soul, forever leaving an imprint of it on the guests. A property’s design needs to provide complete immersion and embrace the local community and its cultural and historical riches to truly challenge and enrich this exclusive market.
According to the 2014 Virtuoso Luxe Report, multigenerational family travel is at the top of travel trends. For luxury travelers, going around the world with their parents, siblings, kids, grandkids, and an assortment of other family and friends is nothing new, however, the frequency and expectations are changing. Luxury travelers find this multigenerational travel to be an enriching and rewarding adventure in which they can learn, share and grow together. But as multigenerational travel is taking off, hoteliers are still learning how to adjust to best accommodate the unique demands of this travel niche.
A property’s design plays a vital role in meeting the needs of multigenerational travelers by designing large spacious suites, bungalows, and villas with plenty of room for multigenerational travelers to spend time together, the greatest luxury of all.
A delicate balance, however, must be achieved between togetherness and privacy, allowing for the ultimate getaway together with secluded areas for privacy when needed. Expanded suites and villas offer multigenerational travelers shared, spacious dining and living areas, multiple bedrooms and several large bathrooms encouraging extended families to stay longer as well as oversized balconies and patios where guests can enjoy an intimate dinner for two or gather the whole family for breakfast.
Today’s luxury travelers expect seamless connectivity that is unobtrusive and feels like home. As travelers are beginning to blur the lines of business and personal travel, the demand to be constantly connected to high-speed wi-fi and in-room technology, similar to at home, is on the rise. Technology, although hard at work, must remain unseen throughout the property, hiding in the shadows throughout a property’s footprint, but still accessible in the most tucked away corner of the property.