ACCOR IDENTIFIES FIVE LUXURY TRAVEL TRENDS FOR 2020
As a new decade approaches, the hospitality industry will evolve to meet changing aspirations, needs and guest behaviours. With travellers becoming more concerned with sustainability, wellness, equality and mindfulness, luxury hotel operators need to innovate their offerings. Today’s discerning travellers not only expect hotels to provide relaxation and entertainment but also meaningful experiences that enrich their body, mind and soul.
1. Innovative Guest Experiences
No longer satisfied with cookie-cutter itineraries and typical tourist attractions, new-age luxury travellers seek to create positive memories through unique and individualised engagements. Travelling becomes a part of their identity and an important step in understanding the world and themselves. These travellers expect more from their hotels than just beautiful accommodation and top-notch service.
Veranda High Resort Chiang Mai – MGallery, Thailand offers a Green Elite Experience, inviting Accor loyalty members to embark on an eco-friendly journey, featuring delicious and nutritious farm-to-table meals. This includes a tour of the PUR farm with its founder, Tristan Lecomte, to learn how the project has helped to reduce greenhouse gas emissions while creating employment opportunities for locals. Other activities include tree-planting and a waterfall excursion. As part of its commitment to sustainability, Accor is looking at introducing Green Elite Experiences across multiple hotels and resorts to immerse guests into the natural habitats surrounding its properties and allow them to learn more about how they can play a part in protecting the planet and its people.
2. Transformative Travel
Searching for immersive experiences that will transform more than just Instagram feeds, modern luxury travellers crave empowering moments and meaningful, lasting changes in their lives. Typically in the form of community work, yoga retreats and wellness getaways, transformative travel helps to bring out the best in everyone.
3. Mindful Purchasing
Hungry for more authentic local immersion, travellers often start with what they eat, which drives hotels to scrutinise the origin and procurement of their food products. Re-thinking the current supply chain addresses issues such as food wastage. While the procurement process is often transparent to guests, mindful purchasing directly affects the guest experience in terms of sustainable menus, green initiatives and fulfilment of their travel aspirations.
Currently implementing its first centralised Procurement Office for Asia, Accor is in the process of consolidating a supplier database and catalogue to cater to all hotel needs. It aims to create an innovative supply chain that delivers organic and sustainable products at a competitive price to the consumer in collaboration with suppliers, partners and local governments. In Singapore, Accor has partnered with brands focusing on reducing food wastage such as Treedots, Treatsure and The Food Bank to help the hospitality giant achieve its food waste reduction target of 30% by 2021 as well as further educating Accor hotels to be mindful of the community and their environment.
4. Sustainable Menus
The latest buzzwords on the menu, plant-based meat substitutes, are finding their way into many restaurants across Asia-Pacific. Going beyond reducing food waste and single-use plastics, the hotel industry is now looking to create sustainability from the very source. Livestock farming is known to have a vast environmental footprint. It contributes to land and water degradation, biodiversity loss, acid rain, coral reef degeneration and deforestation among many other negative impacts.
Meanwhile at selected Accor Malaysia, Indonesia and Singapore’s hotel restaurant and bars, guests can enjoy a good cup of Gayo coffee, an Indonesian locally-grown Arabica coffee. Since 2016, the Group supports Indonesian coffee producers to diversify their crops and income streams by planting native trees in the area of Takengon, Central Aceh District, Sumatra in partnership with PUR Projet*. All the trees planted provide economic and practical benefits to the famers through their fruit production and commercially viable timber, including medicinal and beauty products. These trees are integrated into coffee farms as shade trees in agroforestry systems. In addition, trees providing shade will improve the coffee quality, enrich soil fertility and aid in preventing pests on the farms, thereby helping to reduce the farmers’ dependence on chemical fertilisers and pesticides. Shade trees prevent soil erosion and protect crops from naturally-occurring events. Besides producing fruits and timber, these trees also protect and improve the coffee productivity. The project ensures the coffee quality and availability while increasing diversified income sources for farmers and their families.
Aquaponics combines aquaculture – the growing of fish and other aquatic life – with hydroponics, which is growing plants without soil. It is a sustainable, pesticide-free solution to traditional methods with substantially higher yields while requiring less water, space and labour. This sustainable method enables to grow a full meal with just one system.
5. Women in Leadership
The hospitality industry has evolved significantly in the past decade with an increasing number of women assuming leadership roles across the globe. As the only hospitality group invited as a founding member of the United Nations’ HeForShe movement, Accor has set concrete objectives to foster diversity and equality in the workplace, as well as equal pay. Foreseeing that more women will take up leadership positions in the wider industry in 2020, Accor is paving the way to create change by committing to having at least 35% women General Managers in its hotels by the end of 2020, with a longer-term goal of 50%.
Another area, which the Group is tackling to achieve its gender balance objectives, is food & beverage. Accor Asia Pacific recently launched WILD F&B (Women in Leadership Disrupting Food and Beverage), an initiative which sets out to tackle the imbalance of gender diversity in the Food & Beverage industry by offering support for female talent such as career guidance and leadership forums. WILD F&B is a network of female food and beverage leaders in Asia Pacific who will provide support for our female talent by role modelling their own career success, offering career guidance to young talent, giving an outlet for open discussions to share ideas or challenges, and help Accor to create a more inclusive working environment for F&B talent.
For more information, please visit: www.accor.com
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