London’s ‘Voice of Luxury Travel’ to talk about Boutique Hotels in general and more specifically about the Dylan Amsterdam!
Interview with Tanya Rose, owner of London based PR Agency Mason Rose.
What is the importance of boutique hotels within the travel industry?
Lots of travellers are looking for a place to stay that is intimate and unique rather than generic. They want to feel like they are experiencing something new and inspiring, a place that is better than their own homes, or is an idealised ‘home-from-home’. The best boutique hotels manage to combine visionary design, a very personalised approach to service and a true sense of individuality.
How do you think boutique hotels stand out when in competition with bigger brands – is it their concepts?
Smaller, boutique hotels can be more nimble in introducing new ideas, like offering special details that set them apart and remain in the memories of their guests, and adapting to their guests by personalising service. Design concepts or a coherent brand can be developed by bigger chains – which we see with the growth of boutique brands by some of the global chains, like Aloft or Edition – but boutique hotels differentiate themselves by creating an atmosphere that is very hard to imitate or replicate.
What do you think the trends are for 2016 and how will this affect the smaller hotels?
We’ve identified lots of intriguing travel trends this year… ‘bleisure’ – when business travellers tag on leisure time to their trip – is really all about making all travel more satisfying and getting the most out of a trip. Business travellers might look to their hotels to give them access to authentic experiences, or insider tips on how to enjoy a destination ‘like a local’. Wellness is also a huge trend amongst busy urbanites. Health is hugely important and fitness has almost become a status symbol for the affluent classes. Lots of people are exercising socially too. This translates directly to a hotels’ spa or food offering with many more offering yoga, Pilates, sunrise activities, and healthy eating options. Hotels that don’t have either a spa or restaurant, can still participate by signposting guests to excellent personal trainers, highlighting scenic running routes in the city or pinpointing genuinely interesting new eateries.
Do you think the history and the experience of an authentic hotel helps guests enjoying their experience?
Authenticity is such a buzzword now, but I do think travellers certainly respond to things that are really special and particular to the destination. They want to feel the sense of place, and to discover the story behind it. It’s the icing on the cake that takes travel to another level.
How do you think boutique hotels stand out when hosting a wedding?
Weddings take so many guises, and have become quite costly when done on a huge scale. More regularly couples are choosing to have more intimate weddings, with smaller guest lists, but spending on excellent food and superlative décor. Boutique hotels can offer a highly personalised service to really customise these bijou weddings.
What is the importance of having a good restaurant in a boutique hotel?
It’s not essential to have a restaurant but it can really enhance the immersive experience for people staying in a hotel. It’s another way to demonstrate a hotel’s unique approach to hospitality by engaging all five senses in a very convivial way.
What makes the relationship with The Dylan and Mason Rose successful?
We’ve been representing The Dylan Amsterdam in the UK for many years now, and we try to be an expert extension of the hotel’s own team. The relationship works because we are in touch all the time – communication is key! It’s wonderful that the hotel is always innovating, looking at its offering and considering the changing nature of the city it’s in, so we have plenty of inspiring news to share with our discerning and well-travelled press contacts.
What are the 3 most important things a boutique hotel should have?
Be individual, authentic and have a spirit of ‘generosity’.
What do you find so special about The Dylan?
I particularly love the seductive design, with its luxurious fabrics and textures, and imaginative use of art, as well as the incredibly knowledgeable staff and the delightful location. Details like High Wine and Vinkeles on the Water are very charming, and so unique to the hotel.
Do you prefer Amsterdam in Summer or Winter?
Amsterdam is perfect in the Spring of course – the tulips in April are striking. If I had to, I would avoid the summer as it’s quite crowded and would choose a magical winter getaway instead. The canal water, pale wintry light and shiny cobbles are beautiful then.