April 1, 2019 /Industry

Be Our Guest


Hotels and hospitality are situated in the perfect sphere for consumer retail experiences. Already treated as guests rather than shoppers, hotels provide a unique kind of luxury, personalisation and familiarity that retail spaces crave to create.

A space for a mindful get-away, a paid for business expense or a luxury trip, hotels are at the heart of the travel industry. Yet, often retail spaces with hotels can feel alien, unapproachable or foreign.

As brands look to transform retail stores into retail experiences, hotels could well supplant the traditional flagship located in high-rent, high-traffic shopping areas.

Retail Dive

Creating an engaging and enticing retail space is a combination of directing the narratives around brands and anticipating curious consumers. The heritage and identity of a hotel are already honed, creating a fluid transition for guests to browse and buy products curated for their specific needs.

Retail spaces can be an indulgent composite of a hotel’s identity. The Ace Group feature bespoke retail experiences in their own right. The Ace Hotel in Down Town LA has transformed the local area into an emerging retail destination, with the hotel lobby store letting you take home everything you used in your room. Also creating a website to showcase merchandise from around the world, you connect to the Ace community and buy eclectic goods from handwoven throws to Fragrance no.1 by ‘Hippie Shit’ cannabis connoisseur Mister Green.

Harnessing the local culture can also create a reimagined retail experience. Casa Bonay in Barcelona features a lobby sprawling with books and kiosks, offering an insider’s guide to the local creative scene. With boutiques run by local insiders and independent sellers, the hotel offers more than just a room to stay, but a truly authentic cultural experience.

Home furnishing store, West Elm, is taking the retail hospitality hybrid to the next level. Soon to open their own hotels, guests will be able to purchase all of the furnishings in their room. From the lamp to the throw cushions, to the curtains, guests will have the ability to essentially try and buy, taking a piece of their luxury stay back to their home.

From our expansive and explorative work with redesigning Douglas in Frankfurt to our recent work with cult brand Pat McGrath, we know how to make retail spaces that resonate with the authentic human experience that people are craving. We aim to immerse consumers in the magic of a community and the authenticity of a brand, utilizing the retail space to attract new guests and delight the returning ones.

Key Insights

  • Retail spaces can help define the guest experience. From product flow or experiences to building community, a well-imagined retail space can create loyalty and forge community within the hospitality realm.
  • Curating a luxury experience allows the consumer to feel mindful, cared for and thought of. A seamless experience resonates with the prestige of the hotel and how they regard guests, as well as syncing with the design of the hotel as a whole.
  • Thought of as guests rather than shoppers, a sense of timeless luxury resonates… quietly impactful, where the value is placed on the humanity of the establishment, these concepts have the guest at their core.

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