If You Can’t Beat ‘Em Join ‘Em: Hotels Attempt to Emulate Airbnb Amidst Competition

Posted On Wed, February 4, 2015 By

Posted On Wed, February 4, 2015 By In Hotels, Interiors, real estate trends

As the city’s war against Airbnb rages on, hotels and bed and breakfasts across the city continue to see their guest numbers drop. But the decrease isn’t necessarily due to the lower costs of Airbnb rentals (although we certainly wouldn’t discount it) but the fact that visitors to our fair city are looking for an authentic New York experience. DNA Info reports that new hotels across the city are looking to recreate the “real experience” of staying in New York by channelling a “more urban” atmosphere with cool perks—bars amongst them—that lure local residents within their towering walls to hang with their guests.

According to DNA Info, 24 new hotels opened in 2014, bringing the city’s total number of available rooms across the five boroughs to 102,000. Another 85 new hotels are expected to join the ranks by 2017. Needless to say, competition is getting stiffer and stiffer, even as tourism reaches record highs.

As a result, hotels are looking for new strategies that range from giving out free Metrocards to decorating rooms in the vein of New York’s diverse neighborhoods to hitting up local eateries for room service fare and mini fridge stock. But probably the strategic of the move of all is the decision to incorporate public green space and recreation into the mix, making hotels feel less fortress-like and more like a community hub.

The Level Hotel, 55 Wythe AvenueImage: The planned Level Hotel in Williamsburg

280 MEEKER YOTEL WilliamsburgImage: The planned YOTEL in Williamsburg

Two examples in the pipeline include the futuristic Level Hotel in Williamsburg with its 20,000-square-foot rooftop farm; and the new Brooklyn Yotel, also in Williamsburg, which will feature an expansive, vibrant rooftop garden above the rooms. Both rooftop greens will be open to the public.

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On a far smaller scale is the Urban Cowboy Bed & Breakfast, again in Williamsburg, which has tapped into the local scene by pairing their very hipster-friendly theme with local fare and parties that bring in owner Lyon Porter’s friends from the neighborhood. “Guests arrive as strangers and leave as friends,” he writes on the site. His impressive setup includes everything from an open parlor to hot tubs, and it’s done quite well since opening last year.

So, what do you think of this trend? Is it on point, or are hoteliers grasping at straws as a way to entice guests in the face of heavy competition?

[Via DNA Info]

Lead and final image: The Urban Cowboy B&B in Williamsburg

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