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Embracing Millennials and Bridging the Generation Gap

Millennial travelers are forcing hotels to rethink every aspect of their operations, design and service. According to a recent SmartBrief whitepaper sponsored by The Wall Street Journal, 42% of lodging professionals said Millennials are more focused on a hotel’s technology, and 16% noticed that Millennials expect more modern design and décor. Hotel professionals are taking note of their unique preferences as well as multigenerational family travel, which is on the rise. Here’s how these properties are staying ahead of the curve:

1. In response to these trends, Marriott created Moxy hotel, a brand that partners with Ikea and targets “Millennial global nomads.” More than 150 of the hotels are planned across Europe in the next decade, with the first location at Milan’s Malpensa Airport. As an economy hotel, the rooms are smaller but the idea is that the social Millennials would rather spend their time elsewhere. Design features include high-style communal spaces, prominent recycling stations and free WiFi.

2. Starwood aggressively courted Millennials when it launched the Aloft brand in 2008. The select-service hotels emphasize design and technology. In November the brand announced an online platform,, to promote local, up-and-coming musicians who perform at the “Live at Aloft Hotels” showcase at the hotels’ bars.  

3. Ritz-Carlton, Dallas just debuted a multi-room “Privacy Wing” that connects several spaces into a master suite for families, usually international travelers or VIPs with entourages. Offering a combined 5,500 sq. ft., the wing includes the Ritz-Carlton Suite plus four connecting rooms, a dedicated private entrance, an access staircase and service elevator, and keyed elevator access.

4. The Breakers Palm Beach in Florida offers extensive programming for families, including a 6,160-sq.-ft. Family Entertainment Center with amenities such as an arcade, movie room and toddler playroom. Not every property is big enough for a complex like this, but the resort offers services that any property could try, such as childproofing guestrooms and setting up cribs with linens from Pottery Barn Kids.

About The Wall Street Journal

More than two million people read The Wall Street Journal every day, including travelers staying at your properties. With surprisingly affordable options, The Wall Street Journal, available in both print and digital editions, keeps your guests up-to-date on everything from global news to sports, travel, fashion and entertainment.

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