Marriott International will launch its first pop-up hotel innovation lab, creating an interactive model hotel experience in downtown Los Angeles to crowd source real-time feedback from the public, furthering the company’s futuristic vision.
The lab will let industry professionals, hotel guests, associates and the general public see, touch, taste and hear some of the exciting enhancements being considered for the future of the company’s innovation incubator brand Aloft, and eco-conscious, extended-stay brand Element.
- With business and leisure travelers looking for more unique spaces, Element is piloting a bold new guest room design that will feature a communal room in the center of four guest rooms, allowing travelers to share a kitchen, dining room and lounge area. This will provide more collaborative space for groups who would like to spend time together in a more private setting.
- Aloft will be revitalizing its food and beverage program with an emphasis on fresh, healthy ingredients such as spinach, quinoa and avocado. Travelers will be able to order customized “pots,” a healthy meal in a colorful to-go container with food that reflects regional tastes. A personalized pot can be ordered and paid for at a digital kiosk; guests will receive their pot with a time-stamped, label featuring their chef’s emoji.
- Tech-centric beverage concepts, such as a portable wine cart for Element that automatically pours wine when activated by a guest’s hotel room key card.
An interactive model hotel concept in Los Angeles will display the global brands’ futuristic vision, while tapping real-time feedback to inspire company’s famed innovation process
At year-end 2016, there were 116 Aloft and 23 Element hotels open around the world, with 150 Aloft and 73 Element hotels in the pipeline globally. In 2016, new signings of Elements were more than double 2015 signings, whereas Aloft experienced a 37 percent uptick in signed deals year over year. In 2017, Marriott expects to open 33 Aloft properties and 14 Element properties across the globe in a diverse array of cities such as Seoul, South Korea, Seattle, Washington, and South Bend, Indiana.
Given the importance that Marriott places on incorporating feedback from its hotel owners, franchisees, and loyalty members, every person who passes through the lab will have the opportunity to offer their feedback in real-time through Swurveys, a swipe-able survey. The feedback will be reflected in the Aloft and Element brands as they rollout this intuitive guest experience beginning in the fall of 2017.
The pop-up innovation lab event comes four months after Marriott acquired Starwood Hotels & Resorts, which conceived of the two brands and witnessed an uptick in signings in the months leading up to the merger.
This isn’t the first time that Marriott invited the public to help transform the traditional hotel experience. In October, the company unveiled its first M Beta hotel for its flagship Marriott Hotels brand at Charlotte Marriott City Center, a functioning hotel that doubles as the world’s first hotel in “live beta.” From keyless entry upon arrival to digital experiences in the fitness studio, every corner of the hotel allows for rapid prototyping, inviting guests to test and give feedback in real-time, ultimately shaping their future hotel experience.
Do you think this new pop-up hotel innovation lab will allow Marriott to gain valuable information from travelers for their Aloft and Element brands?