SEOUL, Sept. 8 (Korea Bizwire) — Once regarded as having an attitude towards customers bordering on arrogance, luxury hotels are making a about-face in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis.
Luxury hotels have a strong sense of crisis that they may not be able to survive with old-fashioned services that have been in place for decades.
Several luxury hotels in downtown Seoul recently kick-started “Day Use” services, with the Intercontinental Seoul COEX taking the lead.
The Intercontinental Seoul COEX released its ‘Half Day Special’ service for the period from June to August.
Just as its name replies, this service is a package allowing guests to enjoy a room for 12 hours at a half price discount of 88,000 won (US$74.14). Guests can stay in the room from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. of the same day.
At the top of the pyramid of the service industry, high-end hotels have focused on luxury luxury without paying any attention to day use services.
The luxury hotels’ day use services, however, achieved unexpected success, drawing strong interest from those who want to enjoy ‘hocance,’ a newly coined word combining hotel and vacance.
These services have also enjoyed strong demand from employees working remotely and the parents with children.
From the perspective of luxury hotels, which have relied mainly on foreign customers, the day use service is serving as a springboard to expand their customer base.
Amid the resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic centering on metropolitan areas, the hotel industry is actively expanding its day use services.
This move is based on the industry’s judgment that it cannot just wait until the COVID-19 crisis is over in a situation where average occupancy rates have fallen to between 10 and 20 percent.
Another solution for luxury hotels is the combination of hotel stay and remote working, targeting employees who have difficulty concentrating on work at home but cannot go to cafes.
Although the price is different by hotel, the price of such service averages between 70,000-150,000 won per day, which is not cheap for ordinary office workers.
Nonetheless, hoteliers explain that the day use services are offered in tandem with a variety of auxiliary services, thereby being attractive to the salaried workers who are suffering from a heavy workload and depression from the coronavirus.
For instance, the 150,000 won ‘Work+Vacation’ package offered by boutique hotel L’Escape enables users to enjoy breakfast at a hotel restaurant as well as having a business meeting with clients at a hotel coffee shop.
Another luxury hotel, Moxy, allows guests opting for its “Work+Vacation’ package to have unlimited snacks and coffee at its customer lounge.
J. S. Shin (email@example.com)