Richard Branson Says “Hello, Ladies!”
Virgin’s first-ever hotel opens this week in Chicago, and Sir Richard Branson tells the WSJ its No. 1 priority is wooing female business travelers by appealing to their needs--safety and convenience. (Think more closet space, bright vanities and a door between you and deliveries.) Given the status of women as one-half of business travelers and their preference for multiple-night stays with added leisure time, this could be the key to standing out in a competitive hotel landscape.
Others are taking the soft branding approach to differentiate their hotel product, like Hilton’s Curio Collection or Marriott’s Autograph Collection. Especially for converted hotels looking to maintain the history and unique charm of their historic property, soft brands allow a hotel to preserve its own identity while tapping into a global brand family, says Paramount Lodging Advisors’ Dan Beider (pictured).