Travel is one of the industries that has suffered the most during the global pandemic. The consequential ripples of placing restrictions on international movement has been far and wide. I photograph for a stable of corporate clients, editorial magazines, and charitable organisations around the world. I supply photography for various architects, designers, and hotel resorts.
Among those industries reacting to the restrictions on travel is the hotel sector. Hotel designers and architects are reworking existing projects and approaching new ones from a different perspective.
It is essential to understand and adapt to consumers’ changing behaviours for the future. Innovation in uncertain times comes down to flexibility and technology. Organisations need to supply environments that can evolve with the changes of our health concerns and that suit the users’ requirements.
Early indications are that business travel will decline and hotels will have to facilitate a wider range of guest that require different amenities. Hotels will need to appeal to everyone with a safe and secure environment which is welcoming. Lobbies are increasingly being transformed from designer furniture showrooms to the “home from home” spaces that attract overnight guests and local people alike. “Hybrid hotels” already offer hospitality services and facilities such as day spars and in-house cinemas in conjunction with their restaurants adapting to daytime coffee to evening meals for local guests.
Interior spaces will evolve to be designed where social distancing is not directed by Perspex screens and floor markings! Architects will need to consider their choice of materials and its viral surface retention qualities. Biophilic design will also have an important place, to purify the air and to create a sense of wellness.
Hotels will have to do more with less which is where Smart technology will reshape the way in which we use hotels. Contactless hospitality will mean the mobile check in and keyless entry to the rooms, as well as remote ordering at the restaurant. Technology amounts to a touchless interface, which is part of social distancing.
Other benefits offered by new technology are density and opt-in temperature monitoring, self-cleaning surfaces, and high-caliber air filtration systems. Hotels are even collaborating with medical organisations to offer hygiene excellence standards.
Maximising hotel roof designs can provide additional space for terraces or sky lounges, while also satisfying functional needs, such as thermal mass and biodiversity.
The hotel industry has always adapted to behavioural changes and embraced new technology. The pandemic has challenged the industry to react and reinvent itself where the resulting benefits will extend beyond hotel guests to local communities and the wider built environment.
When photographing hotels, there are several factors to consider, from capturing the architecture within its location, to the design of the interior space, and the ambience created by the lighting and design features. As with all architecture, interior, and lifestyle photography it is important to work with the design and marketing team to achieve the required photography.