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Thursday 21 September 2017

A hotel bothers to ask guests what they really, really want

Hotel rooms and facilities often seem to designed by some strange creature who has never spent a night away from home. 

Stupidly placed lights, unworkable showers, uncomfortable pillows, power points that need to be accessed by climbing under the bed, ridiculously expensive wifi and so many more issues. Anyone who spends more than a few nights away from home has encountered them. 

So it was nice to hear about a hotel that actually bothers to ask its guests what they actually want. No surprise that hotel was the uniformly excellent Rees Hotel in Queenstown, New Zealand. 

In preparation for launching its new luxury Rees Residences, general manager Mark Rose wanted to gauge what former guests thought and surveyed 5000 - who didn’t hold back on their feedback.

“So often we think we know what people want, but when you actually go to the market you actually find out – and some of the results were surprising” says Rose.

Top hotel and room amenities combined and ranked in order were: 
1. Free high-speed wifi, 2. Complimentary breakfast 
3. Car parking, 4. A room with a view, 5. Daily housekeeping. 

The items and amenities that made the least favourite list were the in-room Bible, turndown service and complimentary magazine selection. 

The survey identified a parochial preference for ‘Linden Leaves’ when it came to a choice of bathroom amenity brands in order of popularity. The Kiwi brand beat international rivals L'Occitane en Provence, Hermes and Molton Brown.

Many guests were surprised to sight condoms in a mini bar and thought hotel shower caps were “very 1980’s”.

Taking all these passionate responses into account, Rose says The Rees Hotel will now have fresh eyes and inspiration when it comes to deciding on which amenities and in-house comforts to provide guests.

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