5 Must-Know Hotel Renovation Tips
Renovating a hotel can be a complicated process, especially when you will continue to have guests checking in and out during the renovation. Not only do you need to plan the project, establish budgets, and manage resources, but you also must manage the guest experience. The following five tips will help hoteliers plan a more successful hotel renovation project.
Hire an Experienced Contractor
Hiring a General Contractor with experience in hotel renovations can help hoteliers save a considerable amount of time and money. An experienced contractor has a wealth of knowledge that will help ensure a more successful renovation. Also, a design-build contractor manages the entire renovation project from initial concept to completion allowing hotel management to continue to focus on the operations of their business and guests.
Listen to Your Guests
When planning a hotel renovation its important to listen to your guests. Soliciting feedback from guests can help hoteliers better understand their needs and desires. It can also help you allocate where your renovation resources will give you the greatest return on investment. Without guest feedback, you run the risk of missing improvement opportunities. For example, you may decide to focus more attention on the lobby when your guests would prefer an upgraded pool and patio area.
Have a Contingency Plan
Whether you are building a new hotel from the ground-up or renovating an existing property, its important to include a contingency in your budget. It will provide a necessary cushion, so your project doesn’t run out of funds when an unforeseen repair arises. As in any hotel renovation there is always a chance that an unexpected issue or repair can occur, especially when you start ripping out carpeting and tearing down walls. Consider building a 20% contingency into your budget, a little more for older properties.
Manage Guest Expectations
Depending on the extent of your renovation, it could be a lengthy process. It’s essential to keep the guest experience in mind throughout the project. Other hotels that have gone through the renovation process recommend informing guests before they arrive and communicating frequently upon their arrival. Surprising guests with a renovation when they arrive can cause confusion and frustration. You can manage guest expectations by updating your website with your renovation plans and status, sharing renovation information on social media, placing signage throughout the hotel, and distributing newsletters to guests. Managing guest expectations will also increase the likelihood of a return visit.
Stay in Touch with Contractors
Hoteliers can ensure a smoother renovation process and avoid surprises by staying in touch with the General Contractor. Schedule weekly conference calls with your contractor, hotel’s GM and other department managers to ensure everyone is on the same page. It will help hotel staff manage the guest experience and also prevent any problems from slipping through the cracks.