New report maps out necessities for healthier hotel design in UK
As the hotel sector thrives amid the UK ‘staycation’ boom, a report has revealed opportunities for hotel design to include further wellbeing and comfort measures to meet changing expectations from prospective guests.
This comes as research from a survey of 130 M&E contractors and architects working in hotel construction revealed that over half (52%) of respondents believe wellbeing is ‘value engineered’ out of projects later on in the build.
As research suggests occupant wellbeing may have to be compromised for cost saving during the project, Designing Healthy Hotels, the latest report from REHAU, has been released to demonstrate the role of designing guest wellbeing and comfort in attracting more custom.
Steve Richmond, Head of Marketing and Technical – Building Solutions at REHAU, explains: “Guest expectations of comfort, silence and premium finish arguably exceed that of their own home, so pressure falls on consultants and contractors to deliver building services meeting these requirements. Juggling the competing design priorities to deliver suitable hotels is a challenge that we aim to unpack with this report, while demonstrating the opportunities that healthy design can provide during the hospitality recovery.”
With around 700 hotel projects currently in planning and bookings being up 300% this summer compared with 2019, it is clear there is high demand from consumers in the UK for hotels. However, according to hotel technology provider Avvio, inner city hotel books are down 30-40%, underlining the gaps where hospitality recovery in urban areas is still in progress. Therefore, attracting guests with high quality design represents an opportunity for professionals in the sector to harness this boom as tourism returns to cities.
“Hotels being soundproofed and sealed to drown out the city noise while increasing energy efficiency makes acoustic performance of building services more of a priority than ever,” says Steve. “Hotel rooms being so close together in this environment means there is more potential for noise to travel and disturb guests, particularly from running water and flushing toilets.
“Increasingly eco-conscious guests expect hotels to become more sustainable in line with society’s shifting attitudes on environmental issues, while tech-savvy customers will come to expect the latest smart technology for controlling temperature in their rooms. Hotel guests will also not appreciate the sound of running water, lack of adequate temperature control ability nor the lack of action when it comes to improving sustainability. With the risk of negative reviews worsening the already precarious situation hotels find themselves in, consultants and contractors could support in the delivery of positive guest experience right from the design stage.
“To help hotels contractors and consultants meet these design challenges, our guide outlines potential solutions for new build and renovations hotel developments in all applications. As a supplier to many sectors, it is our responsibility to make sure we understand pain points in each one and demonstrate ways in which we can support construction professionals to overcome them.”
For more information on designing wellbeing into hotels and to download the report, Designing Healthy Hotels, visit: www.rehau.uk/designinghealthy