In the fast and competitive world of hospitality, personalisation is an essential USP. But what does that really mean?
As more and more guests are choosing hotels based on wellness offerings, the ability to cater to an individual’s personal needs is fast becoming a very key offering.
‘Wellbeing menus’ are on offer these days at some of the leading hotels and resorts of the world. Such menus typically include programmes to improve sleep, increase energy, reduce stress, strengthen mindfulness, enhance exercise performance, boost long-term weight loss and increase strength.
I believe that the future of wellness for hotels is collaboration. An approach which combines traditional methods and outstanding individual service with the latest technologies. The offering should be be underpinned and overseen by a wellness advisory board which includes a world-class team of leading specialists in all fields of health, fitness and lifestyle medicine, leading sports doctors and psychologists.
With this increasing demand for personalisation, staff training and departmental collaboration becomes even more important. From food and beverage to spa and gym, the business centre, through to housekeeping – all areas that previously wouldn’t have had much integration now have to coordinate in a tighter and more cohesive manner.
Building on lessons learnt from other industries, management software should be able to evolve client profiles to the extent that hotels are able to explore guests’ habits not just during their stay but also remotely, post-stay, 12 months a year, thus building an ever-evolving personalised community. Partnerships and collaborations outside of the physical hotel space are key in the world of personalisation. A hotel that attempts to be everything to everyone in-house can not only dilute core offerings but also lack authenticity.
Having grown up in the hotel industry, and currently running a business that provides gyms and spas within hotels, I’ve seen things change dramatically. Ten years ago a hotel that was able to reference guests’ full names, travel history, food and beverage preferences was enough. Roll forward to the present day and service goes much further. Personalisation has taken on a whole new dimension, with all facets of lifestyle, health and behaviour gathered to preempt guest experience but also predict future trends and customer expectation.
Strong collaborations with external providers and the ability to ‘fix’ client experiences with the latest and greatest trends are all important. Examples of this can be seen in health and fitness where guests not only get access to the latest health technologies in-house but also to the latest trends or branded fitness concepts outside of the hotel itself – for instance, a hotel car is organised to take guests straight into a Barry’s Bootcamp circuit class or Psycle spin session off-site.
David Higgins, is the co-founder of BodySPace, Celebrity Trainer and best-selling author of The Hollywood Body Plan.
More on BodySPace:
In early July 2017, BodySPace launched at one of the world’s finest hotels and spas, ESPA Life at the Corinthia London. “This is a wonderful evolution for ESPA Life and our philosophy of creating next generation experiences,” says ESPA Founder Sue Harmsworth. “BodySPace is bringing a new, highly evolved fitness and nutrition offering which fits flawlessly within the existing ESPA Life offering. The range of treatments available at BodySPace fall into five main categories: technology and science, fitness methods, nutrition and gut health, special guests, fitness therapies and treatments.