5 Festive Season Amenities Hotel Guests Will Love
- Posted by Todd A. Vines
- On October 18, 2018
‘Tis the season for holiday travel.
More than 100 million Americans will journey by road, rail and sky over the coming weeks. Between gatherings, many will require a comfortable place to spend their nights.
Festive season offers a unique opportunity for hotel teams to show that their attention is unsurpassed, and that while the Airbnbs of the world can deliver a place to sleep, they’re all coal when it comes to cheer.
Whether your guests spend their entire trip onsite, or come and go between visits with family and friends, there are a wealth of simple, secular amenities that can be added to elevate the guest experience.
Here are five festive season services to inspire.
Last-Minute Gift Wrapping
Gift giving is common during festive season, regardless of religion, but wrapping gifts can present a hurdle for those on the road.
The TSA explicitly asks travelers not to fly with wrapped packages, not because they’re Grinchy, but for security reasons. Additionally, there are lots of spontaneous purchases and last-minute gifts that yearn for a festive presentation.
Not every hotel has a large enough staff to designate a “giftwrapping concierge,” but those with a dedicated concierge team may consider having the staff offer their hand at wrapping. For a creative twist on “giving back,” partner with a local nonprofit organization and allow them to offer giftwrapping services in a hotel common area in exchange for a donation.
Even the smallest hotels with a limited staff can make a guest’s holiday by simply making rolls of paper, ribbon and tape available.
Hot Drinks Everywhere
Cocoa. Cider. Eggnog creamer for the coffee.
And yes, even at relatively warm climate destinations. The drink is less about maintaining one’s core temperature, and more about tradition and evoking memories of winters past.
Cocoa, in particular, is universally beloved. Make your guests feel welcome by greeting them with hot cocoa in the lobby, providing it at the breakfast outlet, and placing a carafe in common areas where guests wait or gather. Consider adding a seasonal hot cocoa special to your room service menu, or simply make it available in room.
While cocoa is great, don’t sleep on the eggnog. Americans have enjoyed the drink (spiked and otherwise) since the colonial period. Hosting an eggnog happy hour is sure to set your property apart from the competition.
Festive Localized Tours
Travelers long to eat, imbibe and otherwise experience the community around them. This truth absolutely extends to festive season, as well.
Not every property can call a horse and buggy to its porte-cochere, but even if you can’t offer carriage rides around town, most every hotel can find a unique local event or attractions that travelers may want to experience. In some regions, it may be roundtrip transportation to Christmas markets, or guided bus tours through famously well-lit neighborhoods, or local Santa arrivals and tree lighting events.
Decorative Greenery for Rooms
While “Christmas” trees are often associated with Christian celebrations today, the tradition of adorning evergreen trees has secular roots, and has been a part of winter festivals for more than a thousand years.
Families that travel during the holiday season typically leave their wreathes and trees home alone, if they put any up at all. Offer your guests the option of having a small, artificial tree in their room. Even modest spaces can likely accommodate a 24-36”, pre-lit tree on a dresser, desk, or in a corner.
A miniature tree will not only deliver a warm glow for guests, it will give them the opportunity to hang personal ornaments and enjoy a private gift exchange in the room before braving traffic.
Candy Canes at the Ready
Let chocolates and other turndown service treats take a few weeks off. Equip your team with candy canes.
Not only are candy canes a secular seasonal favorite, they’re among the most affordable ways to celebrate the season. Some properties will opt to simply make baskets of candy canes available at the front desk or in common areas, others will arm their housekeeping crew with these red and white striped delights, leaving them on the nightstand when they service a room, or handing them out to guests they pass in the hall. Either way, it’s a minty pickup that most everyone will appreciate.
BONUS TIP: Prominently showcase your seasonal amenities via your social channels.
The value of your festive feats grows exponentially when shared online. Work with your trusted social media marketing partners to feature your seasonal amenities, and blog about the unique holiday experience your property offers.
Seasonal amenities are a signature of an enthusiastic, creative hotel, and sure to make travelers happy to call your property home for the holidays.
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