In recent years, boutique hotels have emerged as the most liked guest accommodation all over the world. But the ironic fact here is that no one exactly knows what is the real meaning of the term ‘boutique’ or why this term is used in connection with hotels and what are the benefits of staying in this type of hotels.
But the one thing which is very clear among the hoteliers is the fact that they know exactly what qualities or what characteristics will make their hotel a boutique hotel. The first quality is none other than size of the hotel. It is often questioned as to how many rooms should be there in a boutique hotel? As per the connoisseurs of this business, a hotel with not more than 100 rooms can be pompously called a boutique hotel.
The second quality or characteristic is the atmosphere of that hotel. It is resolutely believed that atmosphere is a very significant factor for any boutique hotel. Here, the definition of atmosphere is the sum of all facilities and ethereal services that make a stay, an outstanding one. When used in context of boutique hotels, the term atmosphere comprise of decor, ambience, personalized service, mind-set of hotel staff and most importantly a know-how of how these all can combine and create a sense of closeness among the guests which will further add to the popularity of any hotel. As per “Boutique Hotels International”, an atmosphere filled with sense of intimacy is a must have factor for boutique hotels without which a hotel cannot be called a boutique hotel. The problem occurs when this atmosphere is to be created without acquaintance. In hotel industry, intimacy is defined as professional caring, professional warmness and professional personalized services. Note that the word professional is included everywhere which means everything is handled very professionally. The term familiarity here means calling guests’ by their first name rather than Sir or Madame, hugs, big hand shakes and others.
Another factor which every boutique hotel must have is a great service. Let me explain the meaning of “great service”. The staff of a boutique hotel should predict or should know in advance, the needs and requirements of their guests rather than just responding it when asked to do so. Knowing what your guests want, when they want, how they want and presenting it in that way just before time is what makes a big gap between a good service and a great service. That’s why it is said that that a boutique must have a great service.
Another very important factor for a boutique hotel to be called a boutique hotel is its very unique theme. A unique theme has become a very important factor and with time it is gaining more and more importance. This fact can be supported by the example that we can see different themes in every boutique hotel from New York to Washington. Original artwork in lobbies, designer equipments in bathrooms, complimentary wine and champagne, guest’s favorite CD collection, all these are very important factors in making a hotel a boutique hotel.
With all these factors included, the definition of a boutique hotel could be, it is an accommodation that makes their guests feel happy and contented while staying there, makes them feel extraordinary, makes them to realize that they should revert soon and makes them to recognize that this hotel is worth discussing with others.