Saturday, February 19, 2005

Hospitality Bedding: Bedding is Taking Center Stage

Luxury Hotel Bedding

Source: By Leo Vogel

Over the last several years, hotel beds have become more visible than ever. Hotel properties and the media that report on them have been buzzing with terms like pillow tops, plush, heavenly, sweet, perfect, ultimate and unforgettable. But what is the reality behind the buzz? Is there a noticeable difference between beds? What can beds do for a property? And how do guests feel about hotel beds?

Proven Success: It's been well documented that hotels that make a commitment to guest service and comfort through luxury bedding programs have experienced higher guest satisfaction scores, market share and business growth. Bedding upgrades can attract guests to hotels and delight them with an unforgettable sleep experience. A memorable sleep experience provides an additional reason for the guest to select and return to the hotel.

Guest is the Catalyst: Part of the increased focus on better hotel bedding is that consumers have been buying better quality bedding for their homes. They expect as good, if not better, comfort and quality when traveling. Higher disposable incomes combined with stressful current events have created an environment where personal comfort is a desirable and justifiable indulgence. The more upscale the hotel, the higher the expectations of its guests.

Satisfaction Affects Business: The bed is an important element in the delivery of the hotel's promise of comfort and caring to its guests. A comfortable night's sleep can go a long way toward reinforcing the hotel's position and creating satisfied guests who will recommend the property to others and return as loyal customers. Because of this, it can improve guest satisfaction, loyalty, ADR and occupancy rates, which can make for a better Return on Investment and improve a hotel's bottom line.

Marketing the Beds: When marketed by a hotel property, a highly recognizable brand name bed serves as a reassurance to guests of a comfortable night's sleep. The higher the awareness and brand preference of the bed, the greater the impact that the marketing effort can have on guests. In addition, the current interest in bedding has created many PR opportunities for a hotel to leverage its bedding upgrades or premium bedding brands to the relevant media to promote the hotel and differentiate it from its competition.

Guest Purchase Programs: A trend in the hospitality industry, especially in the upscale and luxury segments, is the request by satisfied guests to purchase hotel products that they have enjoyed. This is a powerful commentary on how well the hotel has met guest expectations, and it creates a lasting connection between the guest and the hotel that reinforces a loyalty to the property. In addition, the royalties received from a guest purchase program can be used to offset the capital expenditure for the beds themselves.

Luxury Hotel Bedding Info