Despite the pandemic, the hospitality industry has found a new level of respectability as a business amongst investors and with the general public for its assets and for its services. In truth, the industry has had a building and strong acclaim for many years and there has been a positive buzz surrounding the industry for quite some time. What is refreshing is that research is now beginning to show this first hand as hospitality has come to play such a central role across daily life in one form or another.
There are various reports which estimate that the average person spends between 12-15% of their income on hospitality and leisure experiences. There are some who argue this may fall as a result of all currently increased costs; whilst others argue that it will remain constant on the provision that stronger experiences can be developed.
Consumers are seeking new levels in experiences which can see the industry maintain its hold on the public. It has come a long way in a relatively short period of time and it is resulting both in an industry which is more comfortable in itself but also one where stronger services consistently emerging. Few can question that fact that standards have consistently improved year on year over the last decade. The question is more about how the industry will adjust with the new social and working landscape which emerges now?
Of course, this is leading to many forecasts which include:
• More local and regional offers becoming prominent. Given all the supply issues being faced, it is natural that more operations focus on local and seasonal produce which in turn may well see a return to more traditional recipes and menu items. Has food ever been more popular than it is today across society?
• Investment in stronger service levels as hotels compete against erosion from Air B’n’B – so how can the guest receive new service levels which make hotels a stronger experience?
• More immersive food and cultural destinations
• Development of stronger social and community spaces
• A strong retail to develop across the traditional food service sector with more brands becoming centrally involved.
• Operating companies investing into the supply chain
• Hotels once again creating stronger F&B offers, a trend already been developing in the last decade. However, spends in F&B within hotels have been on the upward curve by between 5-10% over the last decade.
• Many casual dining experiences to upgrade as customers look for strong experiences in which to spend their monies.
• Mini-bars and room service to be reinvented as they have become seen as “dull” and over expensive in the consumer’s mind.
• A doubling in the number of Smart technologies within rooms
As with all things, it brings some balance to the discussion to set against the understandable economic concerns being faced. The forecasts do seem to suggest strong opportunities across all sectors for growth and evolution. Research is showing that the consumer taste for hospitality is as strong as ever and investors are still viewing hospitality as being attractive.