The Sybaritic Single spent this week in his country house, just outside Moscow, which was a well-deserved detox from his endless travels and social waltzes. Enjoying time by the pool, he suddenly realised that through the years his own home started looking like the finest hotel.
The marvellous architecture and two swimming pools aside, it was the fine details that made the difference. A dozen beach towels by the pool from The Ritz-Carlton (how does one prove to the guests that those were purchased at hotel’s boutique in Dubai rather than just packed into the wooden trunk?), Palazzo Versace bed linens, room spray from Hôtel Plaza Athénée, teas from Mandarin Oriental Hong Kong, fine cheeses sprinkled with his favourite flower salad from The Ritz Paris, the entire Singapore Sling set flown in from the Raffles Singapore, and a soundtrack from the Burj Al Arab Jumeirah spa. Over the past decade, luxury hotels became lifestyle trendsetters, and today that style extends far beyond the footprint of the actual properties.
With the brightest general managers already commercialising the trend, with Airbnb and the sharing economy about to slice into the luxury market, with rumours of yet another iconic fashion designer getting ready to present his own hotel brand, what could be the next trend?
The Sybaritic Single believes that the highest echelon of luxury hotels will evolve into the true ‘haute couture’ lifestyle market that everyone will want a piece of. It cannot be long before more luxury hotels will identify the niche and extend a wide range of their soft products and services to the wider affluent audience, at their homes and onboard their means to travel.
Can we imagine global subscription-based concierge services being run by international luxury hotel chains, hotel-branded housekeeping brigades and florists coming to take care of your own real estate, or hotel chefs catering seamlessly to private yachts and jets? A suite of à la carte services that goes beyond hotel walls and touches every element of life, creating ever-stronger brand loyalty. As audacious as it may sound, we already see some great examples and the Sybaritic Single is confident that we will see much more in the years to come.