I designed a boutique hotel for my thesis project, but before I actually started working on the design I did a lot of research. Let’s just say hotels are #killingit right now. No longer are homes inspiring hotels. Now, hotels are inspiring homes.
Hoteliers, marketers, developers, architects and interior designers are working together to develop very targeted hotels. These hotels are marketed to specific types of people. The 1Hotel South Beach for instance specifically targets eco-conscious luxury travelers. This is a very specific group of people, but we all know niche marketing is usually more successful because everything can't be for everyone. People are different. Different people expect different things and they want to be catered to differently as well. Knowing this, lifestyle and boutique hotels have grown significantly by catering to specific groups of people.
You may be wondering what this has to do with your home. It has everything to do with your home. Think about it. Hotels are targeting specific types of people so that means everything from their logos to the sheets on the beds in the hotel rooms to the drinks served in the lobby lounge are catered to a target market. Hotels are literally live-in showrooms to give you inspiration for your home.
"Hotels script experiences for their guests. You should be scripting an experience for yourself at home."
Hotels want guests to have great experiences from the time they walk in the door. This means scent, music selection, employee uniforms, lighting, etc. are all considered. You also want to consider these things in your home.
There are several ways that you can experience numerous hotels. For all options, I suggest you do the following:
- Choose hotels that fit your aesthetic. If you don't know your design style yet, then explore all hotels that catch your eye.
- Take a lot pictures and notes. You don't want to forget any details that stand out to you.
- Make sure to pay attention to how you feel in each space. This is a major 🔑 *DJ Khaled voice*.
Vacations and Staycations
These options are the most expensive, but they give you the most authentic experience. I recently stayed at the Miami Viceroy for my anniversary. Prior to that I stayed at the The Cape in Cabo San Lucas. I was inspired by The Cape the most because it matches my design aesthetic, but I enjoyed both hotels.
Hotels give tours for many reasons. The most common is for events and weddings. This is a sneaky way to get a look at an hotel, but you wont necessarily get in "trouble". You can also take pictures and ask a lot of questions. You may even be able to get sources as well. For my thesis project, my group and I were given a really great tour of the 1Hotel South Beach. We were able to ask a lot of questions. We even got info on the furniture, art and wood used throughout.
The Standard Hotel here in Miami has day passes for their spa. I think it's about $75. Day Passes give you access to the semi-private spaces of the hotel. These are the areas that are off limits to the public. By the way, The Standard Hotel Miami Beach is really cool. It gives me hipster holistic summer camp vibes. I absolutely love it.
Lobby Lounges give a great overview of a hotel. They kinda tell you what to expect throughout the entire hotel. They give you a glimpse at the decor, the ambiance, the people, etc. You can look at the layout of the furniture, the lighting, the textures, the fabrics, etc. Really use all 5 senses and take note of how you feel.
Hotel restaurants are also a great way to experience a hotel. In boutique and lifestyle hotels, the restaurants usually match the aesthetic of hotel.
Boutique and Lifestyle Hotels for Interior Decorating Inspiration
Below I have listed a few hotels for interior decorating inspiration. They vary by size, style, costs, etc.
The Palihouse - Santa Monica and West Hollywood
Faena - Miami Beach
Nylo - Dallas South Side
The W - Buckhead
The W - South Beach
Crosby Street Hotel - NYC
Gramercy Park Hotel - NYC
The Bowery - NYC
The Greenwich - NYC
The Mark - NYC