There are plenty of battles between the sexes that make no sense because let’s face it we share more similarities than differences, but did you know that research consistently shows women prefer a higher indoor temperature than men? This means 50 percent of your guests may not be getting the warm welcome you intend.
There is plenty of science to back up the widespread belief that women ‘feel the cold’ more than men and it’s down to some basic biological differences. For a start, women tend to have less muscle than men so they can’t generate as much heat and they have more fat between the skin and muscles, so the skin feels colder.
There are also hormonal changes that can cause women to feel even colder at certain times. And with a lower metabolic rate than men (which reduces heat production capacity during cold exposure) women are very prone to feeling especially chilly when the temperature drops, even just a little.
If you’ve ever worked in a close space like an office with a mix of male and female colleagues, you may have noticed an ongoing argument about the ideal temperature to set the thermostat and the compromise may be why women tend to wear more layers.
Researchers at Tel Aviv University’s School of Zoology also offered a new, evolutionary explanation for the familiar scenario in which women bring a sweater to work, while male colleagues happily wear short sleeves in an air-conditioned office. They concluded that this phenomenon is not unique to humans, with many male species of endotherms (birds and mammals) preferring a cooler temperature than the females.
Why being aware of this science is helpful to those working in the hospitality sector
Because you don’t want to leave your female guests out in the cold, you want to avoid icy reviews and you want to ensure your guests (of all genders) return.
That’s why before a cold snap hits, it’s wise to prepare, roll out some extra warm thermal blankets, turn up your thermostat, and light up a cozy fire.
Alongside these obvious resolutions, think about the amenities you offer because guests may be open to a cooler room if they have lots of in-room extras to make them feel warm. Think about providing extras in the guest room such as snug slippers, a luxe robe, a steaming hot bath with bubbles, and some hot chocolate or coffee may go a long way to warming the heart, soul, and even cold skin!
But make sure you test out the temperature in your guest rooms and communal spaces, you may need to turn the thermostat up a notch especially if you are a male manager who doesn’t feel the cold.
Many accommodations now have fixed thermostats to prevent misuse by guests, reduce energy consumption and reduce costs but you can contact your heating provider or thermostat control expert to discuss an energy-efficient way to create a more gender-balanced, but perfectly comfortable temperature, in your accommodation space or venue.
Finally, don’t forget about your guest’s sleep experience
Think about the “Scandinavian sleep method”, which is where couples sleep on the same bed but under separate blankets or doonas. Your guests may prefer this way of sleeping on a colder night, so remember to always provide that extra blanket or two.