The hospitality industry ranks as one of the most ancient and basic part of our contemporary world. The immense interest appended to the industry emanates from the need to make each destination as attractive as possible through provision of services in the most exquisite way. The characteristics of the guests determine the innate design of the hotel as well as other characteristic features.
The design of hospitality facility goes a long way in determining the success of the venture as a business. Each component has an important to play in the impression created on the people seeking to spend on recreation. The design includes the location, the structure itself, facilities availed by the management and the environment surrounding the destination.
1) Players in the Development Process
The hospitality industry, like any other venture comprises owners, clients, workforce and the guests. Each of these players has an important role from the inception of the idea to start the hospitality destination (Bowie & Buttle, 2004). The owners provide the capital and financing for establishment of the resort in addition to making decisions regarding the type of investment they desire. Workers in the hospitality industry are the most important of assets possessed by the hotel. They are the contact-point with the guests and thus paint the first opinion of the hotel.
Clients provide the much-required needed service in addition to supplying the required facilities that enable service-delivery to the guests. The success of the hospitality industry is best implied by its name: hospitality. The needs and wants of individuals are varied in regards to recreation and residence in guesthouses. As a result, the development process is hinged on the needs and wants of the prospective guests. The characteristics of the destination should be commensurate to the needs of the anticipated individuals under the constraint of availability of resources.
Guests are the sole source of revenues to the hotel. As a result, during the design and development process, emphasis is laid on the preferences of the guests who are expected to patronize the destination. As suggested by Carroll, Carroll, & Ridge (2009), the design and facilities should address the dynamic needs of the guests in order to achieve sufficient returns without recurring capital expenditure. Attractive design increases the occupancy levels while good service and ample facilities contribute to loyalty and repeat visits.
2) Master Planed Resort versus an Inner-City Luxury Hotel
A master planned resort is harder to design and develop than an inner-city luxury resort. The characteristics of a master planned resort make it harder to build in comparison to an inner city luxury hotel. A master planned resort is characterized by development of self-contained and fully integrated units developed in a locale of ample natural facilities as asserted by Hibbard & Salbosa (2006). The main aim of a master planned resort is to attract the occupancy of short-term patronage through provision of a wide range of interior and open-air frivolous facilities. Rarely do master planned resorts provide overnight lodging facilities for their visitors.
On the other hand, inner city resorts are patronized by individuals with short durations of stay, mostly overnight lodging facilities. Inner city hotels are also favored by individuals who travel on business as postulated by Olsen & Zhao (2008). Owing to the obligations of the visit, the guest seldom has time to search for the best facility. His main motivation is convenience and proximity to his business destination. As a result, an individual may check into an expensive inner-city hotel due to the fact it is most appropriate for his visit instead of a cheaper hotel that is not in close proximity.
Master planned resorts offer a catalogue of facilities, all of which have to remain attractive to the guests in order to attract occupancy. Most guests who visit master planned resorts do so on special occasions and on voluntary basis. Check-in is normally necessitated by leisure and recreation. As a result, the prospective guests have enough time to analyze the facilities of each resort. Owing to this fact, each resort has to have an attracting factor that acts as its competitive edge over the other destinations (Bowie & Buttle, 2004).
Master planned resorts are characterized by multiplicity of facilities to provide recreational destination. As a result, the design is only restricted by availability of resources to increase the catalogue of services. This factor leads to the constant metamorphosis of the resorts owing to the strategic moves to improve service provision. Thus, master planned resorts are not bound or limited in the kinds of services they provide. Inner-city hotels on the other hand are limited in the type of services they offer. This is due to the constraints of space.
As outlined by Hibbard & Salbosa (2006), master planned resorts take long durations to plan and develop. The search for an appropriate site with the desirable natural amenities limits the options available for the developers. In most instances, the location is a contributor to the long payback period characteristic of most resorts. However, for inner-city hotels, conversion of an existing structure is a process that takes few resources in time and capital.
4) GOOD versus BAD DESIGN
Investment in the hospitality industry necessitates ample planning in order to attract and retain occupancy levels into the near future (Carroll, Carroll, & Ridge, 2009). The design should possess several characteristics that accommodate the requirements of the guests in addition to accruing ample returns to invest. The hospitality industry is concerned about two facets of design: interior and exterior design. The attractiveness of the design is a major contributing factor to the occupancy levels. Most guests are in search of a memorable stay and design forms major determining factor to the satisfaction accruing from a holiday or lodging destination. Bad design is also costly is to the owners due to poor energy consumption and wastage of space.
Generally, good design has economic and aesthetic value to both the hotel management and the guests (Olsen & Zhao, 2008). The guests will get value for what they payment, while the management is assured of high percentage of occupancy throughout the year. As a result, the designers have to ensure that the location and inclusion of the crucial facilities is catered for. Such facilities are aimed at differentiating service delivery between any two destinations.
However, for each destination, there are certain aspects of design that are universal. A stairway located directly in front of the entrance is a poor energy saving design. Similarly, guests will be greeted by a stairway on the first instance depicts the inconvenience of climbing. Similarly, lengthy, narrow and poorly lit hallways as the welcoming view are a major turn-off. The hall way should the most attractive and diverse location in the facility since it represents the expectations the guests should have of the individual rooms.
Dining rooms should be located away from the hallways in order to avoid the inconvenience of negotiating through the dining tables to access the lodging facilities (Hibbard & Salbosa, 2006). Since the arriving guests are packed and have luggage, the stress emanating from winding through the tables and chairs in full view of diners is an unpleasant experience. Adjoining bedrooms are devoid of the privacy needed by some guests. As a way of catering for the needs of the different preferences of each guest, it is advisable to have some bedrooms adjoined and others separate.
Immense care and skill have to be applied when designing guesthouses. The dynamic nature of the industry necessitates ample analysis of the needs of the targeted population in order to provide services that stand the test of time. The huge capital requirements as well as opportunity costs involved in modification of the facility to improve services should be kept at a minimum by choosing designs that are appealing in the long-term. The characteristics of the guesthouse play a major role so emphasis should be put in the physical location of destination as well.