The transformation generation of the new roaring twenties – Where do hotels go from here?

This is the year of ‘Future Thinking and resetting’ at Harrison, and our recent planning and brainstorming session was all about that. It was a truly dynamic session with contributions from the global team in Melbourne, London, Dallas and Dubai.

We’re all mindful that the industry we work in is under pressure like we’ve never seen before, but hotels are still under construction, entrepreneurs are still designing and building, chains are still growing, but in the shadows, we experience record numbers of lifetime closures, sales declines and job losses which we cannot get away from.

But what of the hotel assets that have had a year of hell from lockdown after lockdown, how can they continue to survive? …… We have a clear view that they have to.

 

The Future of the Hotel.

We talked about the role that large hotels will play in owner portfolios, hypothesising whether there was still a place for them in cities where office worker behaviour has transformed and what once might have been unthinkable is now becoming acceptable ‘working from home’ and the role of Zoom becoming so common place it’s hard to see a return to the social and working habits of the noughties.

So, what of these assets?

Can whole floors be transformed from single night stays to permanent residences? Can staid all day dining becoming destination dining? Perhaps a whole floor transformed to a gaming and sports themed destination with a global brand perhaps, such as Goose Island Craft Beer Bar, an AB InBev concept?

Meeting rooms transform to technological spaces that replace the traditional meeting room, to a Boardroom by the hour or day and other cavernous space transformed to destination social meeting and workspaces relieving the boredom of home working.  Why couldn’t additional space be used to home retail services and shops aligned to the needs of the new user, guest, resident, visitor, worker and owner?

Can a 600-bed hotel become a 350-bed hotel and multi-purpose asset that relies on multiple income, multiple destination purpose driven rather than the traditional dual income streams they currently rely?

These assets have to sweat and sweat differently. Imagine hotel revenue directors being complemented (even replaced) by single building asset managers looking after leasing etc., not just maximising the revenues of single night stays.

And then we went on, how do we make these spaces even more dynamic, future thinking and pace setting, like fashion statements but more physical and permanent. Many owners crave trophy assets, be they the hotel brand or restaurants and bars within, but that list is a relatively short one and as we transform how do we lift stunning indulgent design and make it equally captivating, atmospheric and command crave?

 

 

Hospitality Trends & Ideas to Look Out for in 2021

Our fashion analogy is that it’s a bit like taking couture fashion off the catwalk and into the mainstream, still generating awesome brand awareness but affordably in spaces that drive essential footfall from the residents but also the surrounding community as a new destination, but also a space that can quickly evolve, maintain and drive footfall.

Dining, drinking, social and meetings spaces that used to last several years or longer won’t now as innovators and entrepreneurs teach us how to create dynamic spaces so brilliantly and affordably. The consumers’ emotional needs crave value; atmosphere, comfort and the trend are now a given expectation.

We’re looking forward to seeing how hotels evolve in the transformation generation of today’s roaring twenties.

Futuristic thinking is demanded to make sure that guests still get their jaw dropping experience, but owners too can sleep better at night knowing their assets are sweating while they’re sleeping, whatever the time of day it is.  And that is what the design, branding and strategy team at Harrison are focusing this year with their theme of ‘Future Thinking’ as ‘Global Brand Transfer’ experts.

 

Hospitality Consulting at Harrison

The team at Harrison have proven their ability to take brands and successfully ‘glocalise’ them from home brand to a global brand particularly in the franchise sector with brands such as Hard Rock Café, Pizza Hut, Wynham Hotels and Resorts, Hilton, Slim Chickens and TGI Fridays.

The Harrison Global Brand Transfer program now offers clients a full end-to-end service from design, branding, and franchise consulting services.
Offering clients

Brand Development on behalf of the Franchisor

Building design brand books for franchisees to deliver consistent global brand guidelines.

Brand Delivery on behalf of the franchisee.

Taking the brand books and providing detailed drawings for local contractors to build and deliver.

Strategic market entry guidance to both franchisor and franchisee with expert guidance and consultancy to ensure a successful development plan roll out

Guidance and advice for new brands going to market with franchising aspiration

Working with operators to build a robust franchise model.

Guidance and Advice for established brands with a franchise strategy.

We have over the years in fact created a Harrison ‘franchise ecosystem’

For further information or a chat about your franchise plans then please contact us on richard@harrison.hn or via our websites contact us page.

Front Burner’s New Slider Concept – Son of a Butcher – Makes a Stand in Dallas.

Harrison would like to thank and congratulate the Front Burner Restaurant team on the launch of the Son of a Butcher (SoB) restaurant concept in an iconic building on Greenville Ave. Dallas.

Harrison have been working in partnership with the Front Burner Restaurant team to develop this memorable architecture & interior design concept for the last year. Get yourself down to the restaurant, the sliders are incredible!!

Also a big thank you to the Harrison team who collaborated closely with Front Burner Restaurants throughout the concept, branding, architecture & interior design, construction documentation stages as Architect of Record on this project.

Click on this link for more details.  

 

Harrison Develops Concept for New Social Lounge Experience Sidecar Social

Dallas, TX  (RestaurantNews.com)  Architecture and design firm Harrison has completed Sidecar Social, a new social lounge experience in Addison. The property is located at The Village on the Parkway, a 380,000-square-foot lifestyle center in Dallas/Fort Worth. The grand opening is scheduled for late August 2019.

Continue reading here.

Storytelling – really connect with your customers.

Behind some of the greats in the business, there’s often an origin story. Richard Branson started his first business out of a public phone booth, known in the creative world as ‘the hero’s journey’. These stories have gripped us since mankind first huddled around the fire, telling engaging, potentially life-saving tales of the tribe.  We are all storytelling creatures.

Hollywood screenwriting instructor Robert McKee argues that stories “fulfil a profound human need to grasp the patterns of living — not merely as an intellectual exercise, but within a very personal, emotional experience.” Creating an immersive experience that tells the origin story of a product – and where it’s heading – can be an effective way to engage with customers on a deeper level than more traditional marketing methods. The key to making them work – the same as Hollywood blockbusters and tales around the campfire – is memorable, instructional storytelling that resonates with the audience.

Experiential marketing is still working. Developments such as the €16m expansion plan for the Guinness Storehouse (Ireland’s most popular visitor attraction), Disney’s Star Wars Hotel and Urban Adventure, a new concept we are currently developing. Urban Adventures, a unique, immersive, adrenaline-fuelled, extreme sports activity entertainment concept. Building on all the guest’s senses to create F&B that is a core part of its DNA.

These days, companies are more likely to use immersive experiences to reach new and existing customers via pop up that showcase brand innovations. Even for celebrities, institutions and IP-based products, telling the story of the brand now need to be more engaging than a few boards of old photographs, a shelf of ‘packaging through the ages’ and behind-the-scenes How-It’s-Done videos.  Even when your product is well established, how can the story go deeper?

That’s where sensation comes into the picture – at Cadbury World, the Heath Robinson-style gurgling, purple ‘chocolate machine gives visitors a taste of what’s in store,

Of course, it’s a good idea to make sure the story you’re telling isn’t a Tall Tale.  Consumers are only ever a few clicks away from a deep dive into a company’s public profile. Visitor attractions ought not only to reflect the sensations you want your brand to conjure up with loyal and new customers but also be able to go through the ups and downs in the history of your organisation and pluck out the tales that demonstrate what the company is really like and what the brand stands for. And it’s OK to admit to mistakes (short-lived changes in brand recipes that caused a public outcry, for example) – that makes you more relatable; more human.

When brands get it right, their visitor attractions morph into something beyond a marketing exercise and become tourist destinations in their own right. Places like the Jamison Distillery and Legoland ask their audiences to travel and pay for a brand experience.

Harrison is obsessed with telling beautiful stories for brands simply designed for people.

Creatively driven. Passionate. Provocative.

It’s your story. It’s yours to tell. Find an honest, engaging way to show people not only what or how, but why your company does what it does they will feel connected to your brand. That’s human nature. We specialise in storytelling and creating brands that are underpinned by the hero’s journey, why no drop us a line or email us.  www.harrison.hn

 

Harrison unveils the new kid on the Block for Whitbread

Time travel may be a sci-fi dream for many, but for the UK’s largest hospitality company, it has become reality.  Earlier this year, Harrison successfully evolved Whitbread’s Beefeater brand and transported it seamlessly to the competitive high street of the 21st century.

The recent launch of the 3000 sq ft, 173-cover Beefeater Bar + Block in Birmingham city centre has been met with rave reviews and offers a younger demographic a far edgier Beefeater experience with huge on-trend appeal. 

The new, modern design lends centre stage to the theatre of food and drink, with a dramatic open kitchen and stand-out central bar complemented by the warmth and conviviality of wood, leather and copper finishes.  The scheme is cleverly punctuated with the eponymous butcher’s block, contemporary artwork and atmospheric lighting.

Beefeater Bar + Block’s journey is a supreme example of Harrison’s skill at extracting and successfully reinterpreting the very best of a brand.  The restaurant is a perfect answer to Whitbread’s desire to attract a younger customer to Beefeater in a busy and highly competitive city centre location.