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Thursday, June 12, 2008

More imaginative travellers seeking more

In answer to my question are hotels going out of fashion?, travellers responding are reaffirming my recent observations while travel industry professionals are seeing things a little differently. Norae rarely stays in hotels on her many travels: "If I do I always seek out the small hotels that have some character... the main reason I have avoided hotels is that they tend not to be good value for my money.” Brett Webber agrees: “Most of my travel is business, and for short stays where corporate restrictions on accommodation choices apply, hotels are still in. For longer work assignments, serviced apartments are increasingly becoming a better choice. For private travel, the value proposition offered by anything other than the best deals at the best hotels is diminishing, particularly when compared to higher quality B&B operations.” Bernard Purcell writes: “Hotels, apart from a little spoiling luxury every now and again, do not meet any of our travel requirements these days. With family in tow, we prefer to rent villas or farmhouses for a longer period and explore the region from that base. Even in major cities, a fully equipped apartment meets our needs more fully than a hotel.” Bill Holmes says: “My vote is for apartment or house swaps. This works out cheaper for everyone and the accommodations are often much nicer and more personal.” Travel writer/blogger Dan Eldridge writes “I'm not sure if hotels are going out of fashion, or if it's just that American travelers are becoming more comfortable with alternative accommodation options.” Dan is developing an upmarket hostel-cum-cool B&B for “grown-up hipsters”. Tamara, founder of Mr & Mrs Smith offers a nuanced perspective: “I don’t think it’s time to ring the death knell for the hotel industry at all... boutique hotels have never been more fashionable...‘More interesting and intimate travel experiences’ don’t necessarily exclude hotel stays, after all; it just depends on the hotel in question. I do, however, think you’re right to suggest that people are more likely to consider unusual forms of accommodation, and self-catering alternatives in particular... I don’t think this is necessarily eating away at the hotel market, it’s just an indication that people are becoming more imaginative travellers, whether they stay at a boutique hotel, a B&B, a self-catering rental, or whatever.” And The Happy Hotelier tells me this is exactly why he's so fascinated by the pod hotel concept!

Pictured? Our room at Talisman, a magical boutique hotel we stayed at in Damascus last year.

3 comments:

Felicia said...

As usual, great and informative posts.

By the way, have you received my email?

Thanks,

Felicia
www.nearandfar.wordpress.com

Nomadic Matt said...

Lara,

I'd like to do an interview of a professional writer for my blog and you are the only one I have any real contact with. Would you mind doing an interview? (Easily done via e-mail.)

laradunston said...

Hi Felicia - thanks for the comments! Got your email. Congrats on the success with the photography & travel writing!

Hi Matt - sure, why not? Lots of deadlines this week, but email me the questions and I'll get to them as soon as I'm able!