How can hotels sell their spaces in times of crisis? – Net World Hospitality Panel

Max Starkov
Adjunct Professor NYU Tisch Center for Hospitality and Hospitality & Online Travel Tech Consultant

In the post-pandemic world, I see three important revenue generation initiatives for the use of hotel spaces:

1. Create co-working spaces: Like the flexible workspaces KettleSpace at the Roger Smith Hotel, create workspaces from the hotel for outsiders, digital nomads and local entrepreneurs who do not want to be bound by office leases. Create daily, weekly and monthly packages and promotions for the room and office, including Wi-Fi, coffee, bottled water, snacks and a catered lunch.

2. Use unused conference / reception space: With corporate group and network markets accelerating at a slower rate than leisure travel, use unused meeting space to offer courses yoga classes, wellness programs, cooking classes, new book readings and author signing events, neighborhood craft shows, and more.

3. Create an “Airbnb” type product to compete with short-term rental players. Vacation rentals now account for almost a third of accommodation bookings in your area. In 2020, Airbnb and Vrbo accounted for 29% of total accommodation revenue in the United States and elsewhere. Add to that vacation rental bookings through Booking’s global portfolio of over 6 million properties and… you get the picture. Start by closely monitoring Airbnb, Vrbo, and other vacation rental properties in your market. Research and identify rental properties in your neighborhood, and what their typical amenities and features are. Identify your property’s value proposition and create a list of all the amenities, services, and attributes of your property that you think are better than the average vacation rental in your area. Then review and update property descriptions on the hotel website, social media profiles, CRS and WBE descriptions, directory listings, GMB, and promotional material.

Be sure to educate your staff on the main advantages of your property over vacation rentals in the area: from a better location and no cleaning fees to better cleanliness protocols, free Wi-Fi -Very high speed fi and a free breakfast.

Introduce weekly and monthly rates for rooms and suites. Strongly promote your adjoining rooms and suites with kitchenette. How many hotels offer extended stay rates that are preferred by travel consumers in today’s environment? A weekly rate is NOT a daily rate multiplied by seven. A monthly rate is NOT a nightly rate multiplied by 30! Make sure your CRS, WBE (Website Booking Engine), and Channel Manager can take the weekly and monthly rates and return them if they can’t.

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