November 1, 2017 | Publications

A Design Tale: Being the Authors of Our Own Design Story

Today’s hotel designs increasingly reflect and embrace the local “story” of their surroundings.

As architects, designers and procurement specialists know, design elements aren’t a series of random choices. Although hotel design may often appear effortless to our guests, it is a result of careful planning and deliberate selections. What we’re seeing in the industry is increasingly customized public spaces and modified guestrooms, less prototypical design and more boutique touches—making design picks often the most important differentiator.

Industry trends shaping the narrative
Unsurprisingly, millennials continue to be the fastest growing segment of today’s travelers and the largest consumer group in the United States at an estimated 70 to 80 million people. While millennials are a prominent force driving hospitality design trends, it’s essential not to underestimate the desires of other demographic groups who are also looking for experiences when traveling for business and pleasure. Give today’s guests a story through design, and they will be drawn to your property and want to share it on all of their social media accounts.

How do hospitality design professionals settle on hotel design concepts? What factors do we consider? What makes us the “authors of our design story”? Let’s examine the design process through the basic components of a great narrative—characters, setting, plot, conflict and resolution. As an example, we’ll use one of Group One’s recent projects—a new Hilton dual-brand hotel in Woburn, Massachusetts. Currently under construction, the hotel combines the Homewood Suites and Hampton Inn brands under one roof.

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