Hospitality industry business owners spend a lot of time on making their guest rooms warm, friendly, and inviting. They may also allocate some resources into their bar, restaurant, or cafe areas in order to lure guests into spending more of their dining budget on site. While these are wise endeavors, they shouldn’t come at the expense of maintaining a beautiful and functional hotel lobby.
After all, the lobby is the “first impression room” of any hotel, and it can influence the opinion of the entire guest experience (positively or negatively). But if you don’t have money in your budget for a complete lobby remodel, here are some tips to help you renovate your lobby space for less money.
- An uncluttered entry. Walk in the front door of your lobby. Is it cluttered or confusing? Simply moving some pieces around to open up the entryway can make a huge difference.
- New carpeting or area rugs. Fresh, colorful carpet or area rugs with intricate designs can beautify any large space without changing the basic layout of the lobby itself.
- Better lighting. Guests tend to avoid dark, dank lobbies. Using brighter bulbs, adding more fixtures, or even hanging a centerpiece chandelier can do wonders for a space’s illumination.
- Fresh paint or wallpaper. Sometimes, all a lobby needs is a quick makeover. A coat of paint or a new style of wallpaper can accomplish that pretty easily.
- More signage. Guests don’t like to feel disoriented in a hotel lobby. Strategically placing attractive, informative signs can ease the minds of your harried visitors.
- A flat-screen TV. You can probably find a good deal on a TV for a few hundred dollars. You’ll be surprised how guests congregate to watch news, business, or sports channels in your lobby.
- A fireplace. You don’t have to tear up an outer wall and add a chimney. An eye-catching gas, electric, gel, or portable fireplace can add much-needed warmth to a hotel lobby.
- Clusters of chairs and couches. Creating places where families and colleagues can gather to work or relax can draw people to your lobby – which helps make it inviting for everyone else.
- Flowers. You’d be surprised how a few flower arrangements (or even one centrally-located arrangement) in a unique pot or container can brighten up a room.
- Wall hangings. Choosing a series of old photographs, some eye-catching art, or even several colorful paintings can encourage guests to hang around and enjoy your lobby space.
- Openings in walls. We’re not talking about tearing down walls. But cutting out a few pass-throughs can really open up a space and prevent that “claustrophobic” feel.
- Music. Don’t forget about guests’ aural senses. Put up a few speakers and connect them to a satellite radio system that emits soft, relaxing, or fun music.
- Custom floor mats. A few floor mats with your hotel logo or slogan look great in your entry area or lobby. Plus, they reduce the chances of slip-and-fall accidents, especially on inclement weather days.
Big hospitality corporations pay thousands of dollars just to hire designers to improve their lobbies. But with a little imagination, you can achieve many of the same goals in your own hotel lobby without spending a boatload of money to do it.
Image credits (#2): Ultimate Mats