Hostels aren’t what they used to be.
A new breed of budget travel is emerging which could see the demise of smelly dorms laden with twenty-somethings camped in saggy bunk beds.
Motto by Hilton is designed to speak to budget-savvy millenial travellers. It combines the appeal of Airbnb-style localisation, pod room space saving and boutique accom styling into a micro-hotel with interconnecting rooms able to be conformed according to guest requirements.
Hilton says it evaluated the emerging lifestyle hostel model globally to understand the opportunity to enhance the shared room concept.
Its research showed that travellers who stay in hostels don’t like rooming with strangers and want more from their hostel experience, but are limited by current options in the market.
Motto is defined as an “affordable urban lifestyle brand” that combines comfort and accessibility. According to Hilton, it offers:
- Prime locations in the heart of cities and popular neighbourhoods
- Authenticity through tapping into each locality’s identity and community to provide a sense of place
- Affordability that open doors to locations travellers didn’t think they could afford
- Flexibility through multi-purpose spaces
Jon Witter, Hilton’s chief customer officer, said: “Following extensive market research that focused on consumers’ needs and wants, we discovered the opportunity for a brand that offers travellers a trifecta of centrally located, reasonably priced and less traditional lodgings that provide a one-of-a-kind experience.
“These findings led us to create Motto by Hilton, a flexible environment that allows guests to design their stay, their way.”
Guest rooms will have an average footprint of 14 sqm and include space-saving features such as wall beds, lofted beds, segmented shower and toilet stalls, and multi-functional furniture that can be stowed when not in use.
In an effort to eliminate the hassle of coordinating travel for larger groups, Motto by Hilton hotels will allow guests to book multiple connecting rooms in advance and split payments between more than one person, avoiding ‘who-owes-what’ headaches on checkout.
All rooms will be fitted with technology that allows guests to control features such as temperature, lighting, TV and blinds from a mobile app.
And there will be lumpy mattresses with suspicious-looking stains in these budget hostels. Motto promises a ‘curated sleep experience’ of premium mattresses, sleep kits with eye masks and essential oils, a white noise app, blackout window shades and sound-absorbing materials used throughout the room.
While prices will vary by market, each property will offer rates that make it a viable option for travellers who typically stay with friends or family or use Airbnb.
It will be rolled out across urban destinations throughout Europe, the Americas, the Middle East and Asia Pacific, with guests able to use Hilton’s guest loyalty program to access discounts and specials.
“We’ve deconstructed the traditional hospitality experience to create something truly fresh and exciting,” said Tripp McLaughlin, global head of Motto by Hilton.
“This will be a global brand, heavily targeting the destinations where our connected and confident travellers want to travel to the most.”