Capsule hotels: when hospitality meets businessmen

When hospitality meets businessmen the result is the growth of capsule hotels.

The so-called capsule hotels are the new trend as regards hospitality for businessmen and travelers with little time and demands. The concept is quite simple: minimal solutions whose  strengths are accessibility, cost-effectiveness, and the ability to satisfy basic needs such as a good sleep or a relaxing bath. Moreover, capsule hotels are usually built in strategic locations, such as airports or train stations. On the contrary, less importance is given to services, personalization and personal spaces: the traditional hotel room turns to a small prefab – usually a couple of meters wide – with modern, compact and functional design and furnishing.

The very first capsule hotel – the Osaka Capsule Inn – was designed by the Japanese architect Kisho Kurokawa in 1979. Since the 1980s, this trend spread in the whole Asia and more recently it started to be a big success in Europe too. The first hotel chain offering capsule hotels in Europe has been Yotel, whose facilities – small in the dimension but luxury and appealing in the furnishing – can be found in London Gatwick, London Heathrow and Amsterdam Schiphol airports. If – for whatever reason – you’re stuck at the airport for awhile you don’t have to wait on uncomfortable and overcrowded chairs anymore: you can book a cabin just for a few hours and have your own bed just a few meters away from the check-in desk.

When it comes to fashion and trends, Italy – of course – doesn’t want to be left behind. And that’s why Capsule Hotel Orio al Seriocapsule hotels have recently landed in Italy too with zzzleepandgo: low-cost cabins with soundproof walls offering – in just few square meters – a single-bed, unlimited and fast wi-fi, an extractable work desk and even an alarm clock in sync with your flight departure time. All you need if you’ve an early morning flight or an unexpected layover and – on top of that – you’ve got a conference call or you need to check your e-mails.

Of course there are people who stand out from the crowd and don’t want to give up to all the comforts and facilities offered by a traditional hotel room. These more demanding travelers choose instead the so-called compact hotels: cheaper than traditional solutions but more comfortable than capsule hotels, this type of accommodation offers almost all the quick services that a businessman may need in a business trip – when the time is short and the tasks are too many: fast check-in, fast wi-fi, express laundry and every other express service you can think about – besides, obviously, a comfortable bed and all the other necessities (source: business traveller, march 2016).

The hospitality world is always seeking new and innovative solutions that could help the business in making a difference and emerging in such a competitive scenario. The emerging trend of capsule hotels and compact hotels certainly offer new opportunities for professionals operating in the contract and hospitality industry.

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