The hotel industry’s F&B scene

The hotel industry’s F&B scene

Food and beverage represents a large sector of services within the hospitality industry, whether in hotel cafes and restaurants or off-premises takeaway, catering and food delivery services. Christian Salloum, founder and managing director of BrandPortunity Hospitality Consultancy, addresses the numerous benefits of having attractive F&B venues within hotels and what to consider when launching on-site concepts.

Many hotel restaurants are unable to maintain successful business and leisure facilities — known as “bleisure” — so they often become a non-profit-making “accessory” in a hotel. With excellent planning, hotels can create award-winning concepts that are thriving profit generators and exceed traditional food and beverage expectations.

Since the beginning of 2022, boutique and lifestyle lodgings have become the preferred accommodation choice for those seeking sustainability-focused options. There is a need to recreate and initiate lifestyle dining concepts catering to businesses and tourists after the pandemic lull.

It is becoming more important to create impressive food and beverage concepts within hotels that complement the overall guest experience and cultivate trendy spaces for business and leisure guests. The pandemic has changed the way that businesses and individuals operate. Remote working is commonplace, and it’s forecast to remain and grow.

Large tech companies, such as Twitter, Facebook and Amazon, are leading the way by adopting hybrid and flexible approaches to working remotely. Others subsequently have followed this trend. Indeed, we have witnessed a considerable increase in the number of freelancers working remotely in recent years.

Hospitality venues are being used as office spaces and convenient places to meet by bleisure travelers, as well as offering local residents the opportunity of a change of scenery. This change in work environments is an excellent opportunity for hotels and F&B venues to capitalize on the ever-growing trend and adapt their offerings to accommodate “nomadic” workers.

Hotels should consider ample plug sockets, complimentary WiFi, great coffee and delicious yet affordable snacks in their venues. Boutique and chain properties should consider new concepts to encourage traffic throughout the day, well into the evening. This adaptation will make the hotel a destination, as well as a place to sleep.

Design a winning hotel restaurant concept
Hoteliers must consider the concept and design to ensure that the venue becomes a standalone destination. The concept should cultivate independence and compatibility to form a unique and blended outlet. Most importantly, hotels must look beyond hotel guests to fill their food and beverage outlets.

Offer a warm welcome
– Consider a small menu that showcases local cuisine
– Keep it tourist friendly
– Give the venue a unique atmosphere to keep it separate from the hotel
– Use the space to help travelers understand local customs
– Target the local community when creating and designing the venue
– Provide two entrances: one through the hotel and the other from the street
– Establish an outdoor dining area

Connect with industry experts and consultants to support you on this critical phase of your journey. They have on-the-ground insights from industry leaders, which make their comprehensive understanding of the market invaluable.

Market your outlet as an independent brand
Give your venue the best chance of success by marketing it separately. Data shows that 42 percent of customers find outlets and restaurants through Google searches. Don’t consider hotel traffic or marketing; your outlet needs to be easy to locate online.

Market your outlet as you would any other business by:
– Creating a standalone website and social media pages to communicate and engage with your audience
– Scheduling a press release to be sent to media
– Announcing your launch events and inviting your hotel guests and local communities
– Hosting events according to the season and activities that attract tourists
– Celebrating with the locals and accommodating the region’s holidays and festivals
Through marketing, you can address different food and beverage trends in the hospitality industry. As they appear, you can showcase how your menu aligns with recent health and new trends. It is crucial to remember that your outlet is competing with other hot spots in your area. Create an extraordinary dining experience to make your outlet stand out.

Sign with a restaurant chain Many hotel operators, especially big chains and resorts, want to diversify their food and beverage offerings. Signing with international and homegrown dining chains brings more flavor to the hotel too. Such franchises tend to be easy to operate, with manuals, standards and creativity already in place. Full support comes from the franchisors and consultants, who bridge the development of international and homegrown brands, diversifying the food and beverage scene and making it attractive to the local community.

Hiring lifestyle employees
When employing lifestyle food and beverage leaders, consider their soft skills, such as communication, creativity and time management, making sure that these fit within your culture. Lifestyle outlets rely on the environment and ambience. They’ll be responsible for interacting with guests and impacting the overall guest experience. As hospitality trends transform, it is essential to continue providing personal and memorable experiences.

Christian Salloum
Managing Director

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