Designing for Experience: Insights and Inspiration

Our designers are frequently involved in events that educate and inspire. This weekend, Bradley Pokrzewinski-Cruise, Designer, and Kelli Zaremba, National Business Development Leader, head to Boutique Design New York (BDNY) to connect with our partners while gaining powerful insights into the future of hospitality.

As we prepare for BDNY, we are reflecting on some of the experiences that inspired us over the past year. Kahler Slater is excited to be a part of the hospitality design conversation and attend events as the market continues to evolve. See below for some insights from 2022 events:

Key Takeaways:

Environmentally conscious design is paramount to clients and guests.

Sustainability is guiding consumer choices in almost every market. Beyond the benefits for the planet, research is showing that green design may be good for business, too.

According to Amber MacCracken, Senior Designer who attended Hotec, decision makers are using “Environmental, Social and Governance” as a lens to screen investments based on corporate policies and to encourage corporate responsibility. Big banks “have committed that by 2050, 100% of their lending will be carbon neutral”, (Hotec Design Conference, 2022) forcing investors and lenders to push for environmental improvements within their portfolios.

For decades, research has shown that guests will choose to stay in a hotel that cares about the environment and commits to a healthier lifestyle. Guests, especially Millennials and Gen Z, are increasingly looking to travel in socially conscious ways, and reduce impact to the environment.

Unique but consistent experiences drive guest purchasing.

Our clients know that it is essential to deliver unique experiences in order to drive growth in all hospitality segments. The good news: the pipeline is looking strong. 2022 resulted in high hotel usage throughout the year, which is projected to continue into 2023. Along with this increase is the desire to refresh flagship brands while also catering to local markets. Big brands continue to integrate local craftsmanship into interiors which results in a consistent brand image alongside a highly customized, local experience for guests.

After attending this year’s HD Expo, Kahler Slater hospitality leaders, Joseph Sinnett and Ethan Skeels, recognize that the need for updates to existing properties will be significant as brands look to reimagine their existing flagships as business-leisure travel continues to grow. This impact results in approximately 100,000 keys undergoing brand conversion in 2022. The demand for these types of renovations is expected to increase, as the market skews to a preference for higher-end, lifestyle hotels.

Kahler Slater continues to be involved in strategic conferences to understand current trends and shifts in our areas of expertise. By translating changing market dynamics and listening to the voices of our industries, we recognize the key challenges our clients are faced with and tailor a comprehensive approach to design for success.