How Does Co-Working Adapt Within Hotels?
Co-working has significantly come to the attention of the hospitality industry, offering both additional facilities and the potential to boost the hotel revenue. Charging the public space by the hour or day offers revenue generation that does not follow the typical hotel cycles or patterns. In addition, it is establishing ties to the local community. "Offering services and amenities for people to do work or get together builds loyalty, plus it's an opportunity to sell guest and meeting rooms, and to show customers what you offer," says Managing Director and Executive Vice President of CHMWarnick (a hotel asset management firm) - Michael Doyle.
According to JLL, the flexible office space industry has been gradually rising by 23% since 2010, which shows no sign of loosening. In 2020, The number of co-working members is anticipated to increase up to 3.8 million. With this high demand of guests/travelers that are looking for flexible places to work, hotelier are adapting and will continue to adapt the service within their hotels.
Most of the Hotel are seeking to take advantage of this rising star high return with co-working concepts in their spaces. For instance, Saco's brand Locke Hotels, with 152 co-working space, has secured planning permission and announced to open in North East London in April 2021, featuring Locke Labs.
Another example is Selina, one of the world's fastest-growing hospitality brands, blending beautifully designed accommodation with co-working, recreation, wellness, and local experiences. Founded in 2015 Headquartered in Panama, is currently operates in 52 locations throughout Latin America and Europe. 10% of revenue is recorded to be coming from co-working, wellness and retail space and 30% from F&B.Moreover, Hilton is seeking for opportunity to take advantage of that high-return sector with co-working spaces. The Hilton Norfolk, The Main Hotel has operated and boosted shared spaces to create long-term co-working solutions. The meeting venue comprises of more than 42,000 square feet of flexible space. According to David Marr, Senior Vice President and global head of full-service brands. "While the goal is to add value for customers, this also will offer our hotels an additional revenue source," he said.
Furthermore, in 2017 Accor and Bouygues Immobilier created joint venture to acquire Wojo, a major player in the new coworking space market. "By partnering with Wojo, we shout out loud that our hotels are open to everyone for work, and thus we encourage our business travelers' customers to network during their stay," says Senior Vice President, global innovation lab at Accor - Frederic Fontaine. "Aims to become a lifestyle companion, and sees this as an unprecedented opportunity." He continued. "By integrating new businesses, we continuously redefine hospitality and keep our brands fresh for both guests and locals."
WOJO = Work. Live. Share. Wojo aims to become the largest EU co-working brand. It plans to have 1,200 addresses, 50 Wojo sites across Europe and more than 40,000 members in total by 2022. STÉPHANE BENSIMON, CEO of Wojo says "Our ambition is to be the leading player in "workspitality" by developing, all over the world, a large network of places, to create unique work experiences, with a full range of services, designed to promote pleasure, performance and connection in a talented workforce."
In conclusion, traditionally, this is not something you would expect to find in hotels. However, as lifestyle preferences and technological requirements are changing, increasingly the hotels are abandoning the excepted business centric model. They are now evolving to accommodate the demand of the new wave of mobile workers. Not only do co-working spaces open up to new audiences and wider community, they can also be revenue generating when they are charged for. Doing so capitalizes upon existing space and unlocks profitable economies of scale. Revenue generation also extends to the other area of the hotels including restaurants, lobby shops, cafes and more as greater numbers of people look to explore the facilities in campus under one roof.