Hotel Brands and the Need for a New Approach in Restaurant & Bar Concepts

Hotel brands have been trying for years to get owners to adopt their restaurant and bar concepts. The idea behind this is to create a sense of uniformity and consistency across their establishments, which might create a sense of comfort in some of their Guests. However, many of these hotels are franchised and the ones that are brand-managed don’t put the same ‘zeal’ or effort into driving creativity, quality, and return traffic, and they certainly don’t know how to market a restaurant & bar. This begs the question: how many of these brand-born concepts have truly connected with their consumers or the business traveler and warranted a second visit and what are the alternatives?

Let’s face it, using these brand-concepted establishments is often just a default choice for someone who doesn’t want to- or cannot due to work, meetings, transportation or other issues- venture out or explore new dining experiences. How many of these brand-born concepts have you even heard of? Chances are, not many. I can think of a handful and I am in a different hotel 4 nights a week almost every week. They simply lack the buzz and recognition that local eateries and bars enjoy.

It’s high time for hotel brands to rethink their approach. Instead of relying solely on their own concepts, they should consider partnering with known entities, such as local chefs and successful operators. By collaborating with these culinary experts, hotel brands can infuse their establishments with authenticity and local flavor.

Imagine stepping into a hotel restaurant and being greeted by the aroma of a meal prepared by a renowned local chef. It’s an experience that can truly elevate your stay and leave a lasting impression, maybe giving you a burning desire to return to that hotel again, and maybe again! By partnering with local culinary talent, hotel brands can create unique and memorable dining experiences that capture the hearts and taste buds of their guests.

Interestingly, it is currently the owners who are seeking these types of partnerships, rather than the hotel brands themselves, because they know! This shows that owners recognize the value of collaborating with established names in the culinary industry. However, it’s time for the brands to take the lead and actively seek out these partnerships. By doing so, they can tap into the expertise and reputation of local chefs and operators, maximizing their capture and revenue.

In conclusion, hotel brands need to step up their game when it comes to their restaurant and bar concepts. The current model of brand-concepted establishments has its limitations and may not always resonate with consumers and business travelers. By partnering with local chefs and successful operators, hotel brands can create a dining experience that goes beyond expectations. It’s time to bring a fresh perspective to the table and satisfy the cravings of discerning travelers and keep the F&B management fees.