U.S. Lodging Industry Capital Expenditures Reach Record Levels in 2013
August 22, 2013
Hospitality expert and researcher Bjorn Hanson says you can expect to see more hotel updates within the next year.
Capital expenditures for U.S. hotels are expected to exceed the prior record set in 2008, says a new trend analysis report. The report, written by Bjorn Hanson
, Ph.D., divisional dean for the Preston Robert Tisch Center for Hospitality, Tourism, and Sports Management at the New York University School of Continuing and Professional Studies (NYU-SCPS), forecasts a total of $5.6 billion to be spent on capital expenditures this year.
This represents a 107.4 percent increase from the $2.7 billion spent by U.S. hotels just three years ago in 2010. Last year, U.S. hotels invested $5.1 billion. A record $5.5 billion was spent in 2008.
According to the report, the increase in capital expenditures demonstrates hotels’ attempts to meet new brand standards, as well as to address social media postings related to criticisms and unfavorable comments. Going forward, hotel guests can expect to see enhanced guest services and amenities such as in-room iPads, updated or new fitness facilities, and redesigned business centers.
Meeting attendees can also expect to see more updated facilities. “For meeting and convention hotels, there will be noticeable changes in lobbies to appeal to younger travelers,” Hanson told SuccessfulMeetings.com. “There will be more congregation areas and general workspaces for business travelers in general. We find that younger travelers often prefer to work on a computer in an area like a lobby than alone in their guestrooms.”
With these increased capital expenditures, Hanson also sees more hotels updating their meeting spaces. “Meeting room color patterns appear to be brighter and lighter, and there’s more control over lighting,” he noted.
Hanson also said that hotel A/V will also be upgraded, even as that service is increasingly being outsourced. “We’ll see more modern equipment and more depth of equipment in A/V for hotels,” he said. “The outsourcing is generally good for meeting and convention planners, although it does add to the cost of a meeting.”
When it comes to restaurants, Hanson says planners will notice more restaurants being reconfigured and re-concepted, often trending toward more casual dining options.
Hanson based his report on interviews with selected hotel executives (including brand and management company representatives) and design and construction executives, an analysis of brand standards, and other various sources, including press releases and media reports.
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