New hospitality brand Zoku launched this week. This and other brands are responding to the needs of the millennial business traveller. BridgeStreet’s Bleisure Report 2014 found that the line between business and leisure travel is blurring as more people are looking for ways to include leisure activities into their business trips. In the survey ‘Nearly half of respondents (46%) add personal travel days to business travel “every trip” or to “most trips”.’
Young business travellers want to experience the city they are in and socialise and want to stay somewhere that enables them to do this, as discussed in these videos:
BridgeStreet’s survey of 640 international guests shows that instead of only exploring cities on leisure trips, ‘83% of respondents use time on business trips to explore the city they’re visiting.’ The report also states that: ‘The top reason for bleisure travel is a desire to see the world and gain cultural experiences’. This is also shown in TripAdvisor’s Trip Barometer 2015, in which 29% of people said their reason for visiting a specific destination was that they ‘love exploring the area’.
Zoku is aimed at people who need short or extended stay accommodation in a new city for work. The accommodation incorporates social spaces, events, and app to help guests to make connections. Zoku’s launch announcement goes so far as to proclaim the ‘end of the hotel room’. Instead of bedrooms there will be ‘lofts’, which are designed to be living and work spaces rather than just places to sleep, and are intended to be more homely and social in the same sized space as a hotel room. There is a new take on the holiday rep as ‘Zoku Community Managers’ will help make introductions between guests. The first Zoku will open in Amsterdam in autumn 2015.
Services apartment brand SACO is also targeting the bleisure traveller. Their research shows that Millennials are 50% more likely to have travelled for business in the past two years than people over 35. It says that 14% of millennials see travelling as an important networking opportunity (as opposed to 7% of their older peers), and that ‘millennials look for accommodation with shared spaces for socialising in’.
Radisson Red is a new brand from Radisson hotel group which again is promising spaces for Gen Y to work, play and socialise.
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