Luxury accommodation – significantly different or just more expensive?
Luxury accommodation is a growing sector in the hospitality industry, but what really sets it apart from standard accommodation? This paper considers what luxury accommodation is by first investigating how luxury accommodation is able to command a premium price, and then identifying the differences in customers’ luxury experiences between luxury hotels and luxury lodges. The paper uses qualitative data drawn from a larger study that examined six luxury properties in New Zealand, interviewing 81 participants during their luxury accommodation experience – 27 managers, 27 employees and 27 guests. The research findings indicate that properties can command a premium price if their facilities and amenities are of the highest quality, if their staff have high levels of interaction and engagement with guests, and if they present a ‘wow factor’ while still making their guests feel ‘at home’. The luxury accommodation experience is found to be significantly different from standard accommodation experiences. Within the luxury sector, a distinct difference exists in the luxury accommodation experience at lodges versus hotels. Properties need to demonstrate to guests why they demand a premium price, by providing value for this money.
Keywordsluxury hotel lodge New Zealand
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