Now remote working has become the new normal for many office workers around Europe, we predict that savvy hotel operators will harness the ‘hybrid hospitality’ concept, where hotels provide office space to enable co-working and interacting – to generate an additional source of income. In some cases this approach could increase turnover by 20%.
Independent ventures including Zoku, Hoxton/Ennismore, Accor, Ace Hotels, citizenM and Kerten Hospitality focus on the mix of work and overnight stays and have had huge success with these hybrid hospitality concepts over the last few years. According to Colliers, many more hotels are going to mix these functions over the next few years.
"It is an additional source of income," commented Dirk Bakker, head of hotels for the EMEA region at Colliers International. "Hotels already specialise in hospitality and often have good food and beverage facilities. Offering beds at night and renting out workplaces during the day is a perfect match. I would not be surprised if this becomes a permanent new form of hospitality.”
More need for flexibility
During economically uncertain times, companies have had to become more flexible by reorganising their space to accommodate varying requirements. As an example, flexible workspace providers responded to this after the credit crisis and offered companies more room for manoeuvre in leases than traditional real estate owners, such as shorter terms.
''The Netherlands is now a leader in Europe with the supply of this type of office space,” says Harold Coenders, head of workplace innovation at Colliers International. "Amsterdam and Eindhoven are even the flex capitals of the continent supplying 6% and 5.9% of the total office stock in Europe respectively."
Watch our Hybrid Hospitality Livecast, with Dirk Bakker, Harold Coenders, Hans Meyer (founder Zoku) and Marloes Knippenberg (CEO Kerten Hospitality), here:
Office for just one day
The business model of flexible workspace providers is to rent out their workplaces for five days a week. Leasing space for only one or two days is financially less attractive for these types of companies, and is therefore rare in practice.
"More organisations will switch to working from home in the future, supplemented with an office for one or two days a week, or a smaller office, with flexible workplaces elsewhere. Hotels can fill this need," added Coenders.
Coenders said: “This does require adjustments in hotels. Good shared workplaces, meeting rooms and co-working spaces are required. Some of the hotel rooms should be made suitable for working, with the bed concealed, so that you can receive visitors.
"This is about offering day-to-day flexibility for renting workplaces, a hospitality first experience with personal and high-quality service and an inspiring and dynamic environment with international allure."
Better connection with the city
A hybrid hotel offers companies an additional flexible workspace option for their employees without long-term lease obligations or large investments that required for a large office commitment. This can reduce property costs for companies, as long as this ad-hoc space is only used on a flexible basis, for example in addition to working from home.
“With this mixed-use function, the hotel will become better connected to the city and the neighbourhood. Instead of just serving tourists and business travellers, it will really become part of the local community," said Dirk Bakker.