5 things to know: 20 November 2018
5 things to know: 20 November 2018
20 NOVEMBER 2018 10:21 AM

From the desks of the Hotel News Now editorial staff:

  • Strikes in Hawaii expected to continue through the week
  • Fujita Kanko to launch new brand aimed at millennials
  • How the psychology of hotel design affects guest behavior
  • Research shows coworking at hotels is on the rise
  • Airbnb bars rentals in Israeli settlements in the West Bank

Strikes in Hawaii expected to continue through the week: The roughly 2,700 hotel employees on strike in Hawaii are expected to continue their strike through the Thanksgiving holiday, Hawaii News Now reports. Kyo-ya Hotels & Resorts shared in a statement that negotiations with Unite Here Local 5 did not result in a deal, and the two sides won’t return to negotiations until 26 November.

“We are extremely disappointed that Local 5 leadership rejected our latest offer, which would have been the largest increase in compensation for any of the striking markets nationwide,” Kyo-ya said in the statement. The company said it offered a wage increase and no changes to benefits for active employees.

Unite Here Local 5 released a statement saying the wage increase wasn’t enough for workers to live in Hawaii. The union proposed a counter offer, the news outlet reports, but the company did not respond to it.

The strike began in early October and affects five hotels operated by Marriott International and owned by Kyo-ya.

Fujita Kanko to launch new brand aimed at millennials: Tokyo-based hospitality company Fujita Kanko announced it is launching a new hotel brand aimed at “adventure-seeking millennials and like-minded travelers,” according to a news release. Named Tavinos, the hotel brand is being positioned as “a sleek hub for international visitors to meet fellow travelers, gather local information and have fun.”

The hotel brand will use an artificial intelligence concierge and have an automated check-in/check-out process with minimal staffing, the news release states. The design concept is based on Japanese pop culture. The first hotel under the brand to open will be the 188-room Tavinos in Hamamatsu-cho, Tokyo, in August 2019, followed by the 278-room Tavinos in Asakusa, Tokyo, in May 2020.

How the psychology of hotel design affects guest behavior: There’s more to hotel design than just aesthetics, writes HNN’s Dana Miller. Stephani Robson, senior lecturer at the Cornell School of Hotel Administration, said that design incorporates the space, furnishings, lighting and color to evoke feelings.

“Part of what makes a great stay psychologically is that it doesn’t add to the stress of the guests,” she said.

Along with helping guests relax and feel more comfortable during their stay, some design psychology can help generate revenue when applied appropriately, Miller writes.

Research shows coworking at hotels is on the rise: A new report out of Horwath HTL Netherlands states that the number of people in the gig economy has increased, and freelancers and remote workers are finding themselves working in hotel lobbies and other public spaces more often. Hotel companies have responded by transforming their properties to encourage and accommodate these “digital nomads.”

“A coworking hotel needs a place for guests to work alone as well as work together,” according to the report. “This can be in a vibrant place, as long as there are quiet areas available to conduct private conversations or work in silence. The combination should offer flexible and dedicated desk spaces and offer meeting rooms. These can be small-sized such as cubicles or larger.”

Airbnb bars rentals in Israeli settlements in the West Bank: Airbnb has withdrawn its rental listings of homes in Israeli settlements in the West Bank, the BBC reports, drawing heavy criticism from the Israeli government. The country’s tourism minister said authorities would support legal challenges from settlers.

In explaining its decision, the company stated it is banning these listings because the settlements were “at the core” of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, the BBC reports. Palestinians and Human Rights Watch praised the company’s decision.

Compiled by Bryan Wroten. 

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