Our modern environment means that the majority of people have smartphones, laptops, tablets and so on, and the interior design of hotels has to reflect this. Hotels must consider their guests’ needs whilst retaining style, sophistication and providing a comfortable and memorable experience if they want their guests to return. With this in mind, there are certain growing trends in hotel interior design.
The hotel lobby
The lobby or reception area is, or appears to be, spacious, efficient, and minimal in terms of lamps and ornaments. Large windows and sophisticated lighting illuminate the area, and the floor tends to be marble, parquet or tiled, perhaps with rugs, both for an opulent effect, and to aid the acoustics of the area. Nature is brought inside with wood, topiary, trees or greenery, and you even witness an aquarium or waterfall in some hotels.
Entrance lobbies are not only for checking in, they are used for meetings (formal and informal), and the space in larger hotels needs to be segmented to allow for this. Hotel lobbies now have ample seating, sofas, work stations, plugs for laptops, and USB ports as a minimum; hotels often have conference centres, meeting rooms, and even technology lounges for their guests’ use. A sign of the times is the presence of PC tablets at check-in for printing boarding passes and other online business that is required.
Nowadays, designers take on the project of hotel interior design; nothing is left to chance, not even the cushions on the beds and chairs. Guests prefer king-size beds, luxuriant Egyptian cotton bedding, flat screen TVs, technology-friendly workstations, or a desk and USB port. In technology-friendly bedrooms, guests can adjust their Air conditioning and lighting using their smartphone. Guests expect their room to be spotless, so the furnishings have to reflect this. Over the last decade, hotel rooms have become more extravagant, bringing local art into the bedroom, as well as being more technology focused. Hotels feature suites as well as rooms, with several bathrooms and a communal meeting area.
Today, hotel rooms favour floor to ceiling windows; the bathtub in the Barcelona suite of the Mandarin Oriental in Barcelona overlooks the terrace and private swimming pool by way of French doors. Guests want something different when it comes to their bathroom – they want spa-like features such as an oversized bathtub, Jacuzzi, his and hers sinks, giant towels on a warmer, and luxury beauty items for their convenience. Hotels are featuring themed guestrooms to make their guests’ experience unique and unforgettable.
Restaurants and entertainment
Guests expect the food to be showcased in exceptional restaurants, and some of the bigger restaurants will have Michelin stars. Hotels may have several eating areas, restaurants, bars or a cocktail bar. Guests want to use fitness centres and spas. The Bellagio in Las Vegas has dancing fountains that reach over 400 feet in height, as well as casinos, and the Mandarin Oriental in Barcelona has a stunning rooftop terrace with a restaurant and a pool that offers 360-degree views of the city. As time goes on and people get even more technology conscious, they will expect even more, perhaps wanting sound systems for music, or gaming systems for when they get time to relax and unwind.