In this industry in order to be successful as a hospitality entrepreneur, you have to keep up with the latest trends, then capitalise on them. That’s why I wanted to take this opportunity to explore whether the outdoor events hospitality trend is indicative of a broader truth about the industry.
Hosting an outdoor event is hardly a new concept in this industry; it’s a popular way of spreading the service in question to a larger consumer base. Summer in particular is a time where people want to be outside and capitalising on the seasonal weather diversifies the service on offer.
However it looks as though what was once only an option in the heat of the summer months is becoming a broader trend running throughout the hospitality industry. Specifically, I am talking about the rise of the outdoor hotel industry.
Corporate meetings are a staple in the hotel industry business model. Corporate events bring high rollers and lots of them, and subsequently, there are a thousand ways to profit from an incoming group of executives.
Traditionally, corporate meetings are indoor affair. The nature of modern business work; the need for IT equipment, the internet etc. means that these meetings need to be held inside. However, according to one hospitality organisation in America, this is changing.
Brian Lang, Director of Catering at Hyatt Regency in Lake Tahoe, has spoken out on the rising culture of executives requesting outdoor facilitates as a part of their conference package. Specifically these are necessary for incentive programmes and team bonding exercises that reach beyond the traditional cocktail hour.
Lang commented on the trend to Skift, a hospitality industry specific service. Lang said that: “We’re seeing an uptick in group occupancy based on growing interest in a healthy outdoor lifestyle, and that’s especially prevalent in our part of the country.”
He further emphasised that “planners are telling us they’re feeling limited about what they can do in a ballroom any- more. Nobody is interested in four walls and a chandelier anymore.” He went on to conclude that the reason for this may be due to the increasing popularity of TV shows such as Survivor and the Amazing Race.
This highlights a growing trend in the business community that the hospitality industry would be well advised to capitalise on. Making money is not enough for most executives anymore; they want a higher quality of life. Outdoor activities are seen as one method they can use to achieve that.
This should remind everybody that success can only be guaranteed in a sector as diverse as the hospitality industry by responding to changing attitudes in a target audience. The customer really is always right.