The Resurgence of the Residential Hotel
Think about when you feel the most comfortable: it's probably at home in bed, or surrounded by friends and family. Nowadays, people, particularly the younger crowd, are SO over dropping a large sum of money on several nights at a fancy hotel. Most people are low maintenance; all they want is a hot breakfast, a warm bed, and a clean place to shower. Residential hotels offer these services and other amenities in an intimate setting, which is why it's such a huge trend today. These stays are not exactly a Hotel Chelsea, but it's getting kind of close (without the drugs, hopefully). They're fairly inexpensive - rule out baggage fees, expensive dining, and encourage socialization.
People are tired of blowing their money on overpriced rooms. Solitude is no longer ideal. This IS the sharing economy, after all. Many trendy European cities have already adapted this phenomenon, but now it has made its way to the U.S., as home stay services such as Airbnb (Private:AIRB) are a huge success today. People are inclined to check in at an extended stay for a few reasons:
- It's cheaper.
- It offers more space.
- It alleviates a feeling of homesickness and loneliness.
These stays are also flexible for those who live a nomadic lifestyle - sometimes renters want to avoid a lease, so extended-stay hotels are a great temporary solution with no long-term contract involved.
Apartment hotels aren't a new phenomenon either. Today, the trend is being revived by a new generation of travelers and renters. Long-term leases can be a huge financial hassle, and some, particularly Millennials, have a difficult time with commitment. That's why residential hotels are perfect for those with, well, a fear of commitment. With so much to see in the world, can you blame us? There's also a fear of being alone that comes into play, or what we like to call FOMO. Sharing a communal space definitely helps people connect with others and is a unique way to meet and mingle.
These rezzies (residential hotels) are exactly what they sounds like: an apartment with hotel-style amenities. They offer kitchens so guests can cook their meals instead of impatiently waiting for a Niles or Geoffrey to show up (The Nanny or Fresh Prince, anyone?). Anyway, room service may be dead after all. Even bougie hotels are transforming their lobbies and guest rooms into more "cozy" spaces that resemble upstate homes rather than a high-class mansion. For instance, a lavish hotel in London called Cheval Three Quays has three-bedroom suites with work spaces, a balcony, and modern décor that resemble a living room.
PodShare, which is a type of extended-stay hostel that was started in Los Angeles by young entrepreneur Elvina Beck, has been expanding in other areas around the country. It's a co-living/work space community that offers individual sleeping "pods" with TVs and free Wi-Fi. The lack of personal space forces the guests or "podestrians" to get to know one another.
There's also Roam Co-Living, a global co-living subscription. Guests pay a fee per week to stay in rooms all over the world, and it's an innovative way to build a social network. Like PodShare, these spaces offer free Wi-Fi and a work space, but they also have private bathrooms and large beds, which is a huge plus. These co-living spaces are now the social hubs of the neighborhood!
Many have ditched the traditional hotel for an Airbnb and other extended-stay spaces. This hospitality trend is soaring. Homestay services, such as Airbnb and PodShare, are highly successful today because of their relativity and convenience. These services and hotels help many feel at ease and offer them temporary solutions, which make them the perfect home away from home.