One of the most important things we do when we design a trip is choosing the hotel where we will stay. We all tend to think about this a lot and we take into account a lot of factors which influence our final choice.
The concept of a stay in a destination has been changed in recent years by what has become known as the “collaborative economy”. Taking advantage of the numerous communication channels created by the Internet, and also powered by the economic crisis, new types of collaborative business models have begun to change the traditional way we exchange products and create business links between individuals.
The collaborative economy affects all levels of economic activity, and there are already thousands of platforms that allow the exchange of products and services without any need for intermediaries, many of which are completely unregulated: from mobile applications that help you order a taxi to online sites that facilitate the exchange of food or used clothing. A genuine revolution in the marketplace, but an “imperfect” revolution for the travel industry, in which service continues to be fundamentally important.
The hotel industry is not exempt, however, from the impact of the collaborative economy, and for several years there have been online sites that offer a range of accommodation under a homogeneous product offering with none of the quality standards or personalization which we normally expect when we travel.
Despite the revolutionary nature of the product, most tourists still think the stay is extremely important, with more experienced and higher spending travellers also highly valuing personalized service. There is one key factor that has been a major travel trend for the last few years and will also mark the future: modern travellers see their activity as a more sensory experience. Travel day today is more than just discovering new places and spending the night in a hotel; it is a collection of sensations which begin as we start to organize our trip and which end at the end of the whole travel experience. For these reasons, it is essential that we pay attention to two key factors: differentiation and personalization.
Meliá Hotels International has always strived to offer unique products that set us apart from the competition. The variety of our brands (Gran Meliá Hotels & Resorts, Paradisus Resorts, ME by Meliá, Innside by Meliá, Meliá Hotels & Resorts, Sol Hotels & Resorts and TRYP by Wyndham) responds to customers’ needs to find what best suits their preferences and best meets their expectations. In addition to the mentioned brands, in 2014 we also diversified the Sol Hotels & Resorts brand, creating four sub-brands that allow us to further enhance our response to the needs of leisure travellers: Sol Hotels, Sol House, Sol Beach House and Sol Katmandu Park & Resort.
Another of the basic foundations of our differentiation is the creation of a loyalty programme that offers benefits for members and make our hotels their best option when they book a stay in any destination worldwide. MeliáRewards is our loyalty programme and its more than 5 million members enjoy a number of advantages and privileges that make them feel valued by the Company.
Far from surrendering to the competition created by new business models, or adding residential rental to our product portfolio, Meliá understands that the best defence against these models is to become even better at what we do, which is to offer service, hospitality and a memorable experience to travellers (or at least those whose idea of a stay for business or leisure does not involve making their bed, shopping for amenities and making their own food).
As the leading hotel company in Spain and with unique expertise in the resort hotel business, Meliá Hotels International remains true to its principles and strives to convert a potential threat to our business model into an opportunity to continue to grow with a distinguished range of products and services and a high degree of personalization in the travel experience we offer our customers.