Hotel Trends Through the Years
Was it just a few years ago that everyone was talking about free Wi-Fi as the hottest new “thing” to hit the hotel industry?
How quickly the conversation has shifted to robot butlers, wallet-free payment systems and “immersive” experiences!
Indeed, hotel trends are indeed fleeting. So fleeting, in fact, we thought it would be interesting to take a step back in time and identify some of the top hotel trends over the past century. Some have come and gone (whatever did happen to all those vibrating beds?), while others, like chocolates on our pillows continue to be a mainstay today.
1900s Hotel Trends
Average daily rate (1900): $2.00
In the early 1900s, more people were indulging in cross-country travel as rail travel started to hit its peak. To accommodate this new class of traveler, luxurious hotels opened nationwide. In Canada, many of the rail hotels of this era were built to replicate the grand chateaus of Europe.
The early 1900s also marked the emergence of customized, in-room offerings. When it opened in 1904, the St. Regis in New York City became the first property to provide adjustable heating and cooling in every guest room. By the latter half of the decade, phones and radios also started to make their first in-room appearance.
Notable openings: Fairmont San Francisco; Moana Surfrider (Waikiki, Hawaii); St. Francis (San Francisco, California); Taj Mahal (India)
1910s Hotel Trends
The 1910s were a decade of great turmoil. War broke out in Europe while Mexico, Russia and China struggled with revolution. But the decade also saw the early origins of several major industries that would forever change hospitality.
Commercial aviation got its start as did motor coach transportation, while the introduction of the Model T Ford revolutionized the automobile. Cruising also became more commonplace, although two of the grandest ships to set sail—the Titanic and the Lusitania—were also tragically lost.
The opening of the Panama Canal in 1914 spurred a great fascination with global travel, especially in destinations along the West Coast, where the increase in ship calls stimulated significant new port infrastructure and grand new hotels to accommodate travelers who’d made the crossing.
Notable openings: Beverly Hills Hotel, (California); Chateau Laurier (Ottawa, Canada); Clift Hotel (San Francisco), Huntington Hotel (Pasadena, California); Halekulani (Honolulu, Hawaii)