Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Boutique hotels make good business

Small luxury hotels with individual character are beating the big chains and small gems seem destined to go from strength to strength, as described in an article on showing the Pita Maha Spa and Resort in Bali in the picture.

Small luxury hotels are becoming one of the fastest-growing sectors of the tourist industry.

They set standards, without imposing uniformity.

These trends suggest that the big boys can no longer take the needs of their customers for granted. Discerning travellers are spoilt for choice now.

"There's no doubt about the trend against standardised hotels, especially at the luxury end," comments Sydney-based Select Hotels & Resorts International founder Richard Rosebery. "Bland is no good any more. People want to feel they're in Thailand or Fiji, or wherever they might be."

Internet marketing plays an important role in connecting potential customers with the small hotels who do not have the kind of budgets that big chains can afford. Thus technology has helped to bring about a promising change where the customer is emerging as the king.

The direct online marketing will continue to be the main focus for hoteliers in the next several years. The industry as a whole has realized that not only has the Internet become the preferred channel for travel consumers to plan and book lodging, but the direct online channel is the cheapest form of distribution.

The same Internet can be used to raise awareness about social issues, help mentor children or provide information to further education and find productive opportunities aimed at improving the quality of life of the people who are struggling in poverty.

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