Major Hoteliers Adopt Boutique Hotel Concept

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by Alex A. Kecskes

Top hospitality companies around the globe are embracing a new trend in resort accommodations: the Boutique Hotel.

Boutique Hotels are intimate, usually luxurious or slightly offbeat hotel environments. Sometimes referred to as "design hotels" or "lifestyle hotels," boutiques provide personalized accommodations, services and facilities and are often furnished in a themed, stylish fashion.

The concept of Boutique Hotels began in the 1980s and has now made its way into big hoteliers like Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Hyatt, InterContinental Hotels Group and Marriott International. All have announced or already included boutique additions.

According to Lodging Advisors LLC, which surveyed the top 15 U.S. markets, Boutique Hotels can charge upwards of 12 percent more than other hotels of similar quality. The growing wisdom seems to suggest that enhancing the guest experience and adding that touch of individuality can be a big differentiator.

Boutique Hotels can have anywhere from 100 rooms to 1,000 and fall into the two-star to five star category. The first quarter of 2010 saw 390 Boutique Hotels run by lodging companies in the U.S., according to data company Lodging Econometrics. Another 100 Boutique Hotels have opened or are scheduled to open in 2010 and 2011.

If the idea of working at a Boutique Hotel interests you, check out the job opportunities at Simply Hired.

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Alex A. Kecskes has written hundreds of published articles on health/fitness, "green" issues, TV/film entertainment, restaurant reviews and many other topics. As a former Andy/Belding/One Show ad agency copywriter, he also writes web content, ads, brochures, sales letters, mailers and scripts for national B2B and B2C clients.

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