It’s undeniable that millennials are changing the face of almost all industries across the world, but one thing that is certain, is that they are having a large say on how the modern hospitality industry functions today.
Take for example hotels and accommodations; M by Montcalm Shoreditch London Tech City hotel might not have been built, if it wasn’t for the demand for (what is basically) digital hotels in the middle of the capital.
When we say digital hotels, we mean those that are set on satisfying the digital and technological requirements of its target audience. Of course, as the hotel is based in Tech City – where almost all of the technological and digital start-ups in London take up residence – we can see that hotels are, in this way, being creating for a very specific crowd of people.
The basic demands of millennials are different from those of the baby boomer generation, and as such they expect for a range of aspects of hotel life to come as standard, rather than be seen as a perk.
We have outlined a few close examples here of what millennials look for in accommodation, and how their needs and wants are shaping the entire hospitality industry.
Perhaps it’s best to start with the most obvious: Technology, or to be more specific smart technology like iPhones and tablets.
ehotelier.com has said that many of a hotelier’s guests are now “tech-savyy”, which means that they’re interested in gadgets and – to a certain extent – gimmicks.
As such, you’ll find that the millennial visitor will no longer be impressed by having a room key that’s shaped like a credit card. Instead, they will be much more impressed if they can open their door with an app that acts as a key.
Similarly, millennials are always going to be impressed if they can check-in wirelessly through an app or, even better, through their Apple Watch.
Several hotels around the world are beginning now to offer this service and experts reckon that soon it’s going to become as workaday as free Wi-Fi in hotels.
I want it now
With the likes of things like On-Demand television and smartphones that can look up just about anything in an instant, the millennial generation is one that is used to have access to whatever they want when they want it.
For this reason, you’ll see that millennials have much higher expectations of free amenities they can enjoy at their hotel.
It’s also important to remember that they like easy access to these things and want to be able to contact someone in a format they are familiar with, who will deal with their request right away.
Now, many hotels are beginning to adopt this service – some are calling it having a concierge in your pocket – which sees guests able to contact someone from the front desk via a messenger app, like Whatsapp. With this contact they are able to reach someone from their mobile at any time, if they would like extra towels, room service or extra toiletries.
Features like this can also be used for things like luggage pick-up, asking the hotel to order them a taxi, or ask for housekeeping to fix something in their room.
In order to keep the service running smoothly, most are now operating a five to ten-minute turnaround on all enquiries. However, having this direct conversation channel means that if there are any delays, the guest can be contacted directly, improving communication and customer relationships.
Gone are the days when staying in an ordinary dinner, bed and breakfast hotel will cut the mustard – unless the millennial is off on a ‘retro’ holiday – people now expect more from their holiday experiences and, therefore, from their hotels.
Let us use M by Montcalm Shoreditch London Tech City hotel as an example: Everything in this hotel strives to go above and beyond the ordinary expectation.
The restaurants pride themselves on their modern twist cuisine, created by chefs who have a colourful culinary back story.
One aspect of the hotel are the Bottomless Brunches, which allow for people to get together to celebrate special occasions over poached duck eggs and prosecco and blood orange mimosas.
Similarly, the bars in the hotel aren’t just bars, as we pride ourselves on having a bespoke menu, featuring homemade liqueurs and gins that you won’t find anywhere else in London.
The hotel spa has a huge range of massages and treatments that are perfect for anyone who is staying in the hotel, or has time for a quick pamper in-between meetings. In fact, many of the treatments have been designed to last 15 minutes, meaning that they have been created with the every-busy millennial in mind.
Lastly, millennials absolutely love a freebie, which is why hotels now include in-room welcome gifts like warm cookies, or a bottle of local beer.
Why? This generation posts just about everything on social media, so if you do something like thoughtful (and for free) from the offset, you’re going to have a positive review on Instagram almost instantly.