How to Design, Develop and Operate a Boutique Hotel


To those that haven’t heard about this before, as well as to those that have, a boutique hotel can mean a lot of different things to different people.

To most answering this question a boutique hotel stands for independent, fashionable trendy and individual business. It stands out from those standard big hotels and has that something really hard to explain. They are cosy, warm and probably meant to be presented to a small and exclusive number of people.

Now there are certain things you will need to accept with these hotels and they are not definitely for everyone. What we managed to find out is that what people like the most about these boutique hotels is the small and more personal side of theirs, somewhat different service than you would get in a corporate branded hotel and much more. The bottom line is that all of these revolve around intimacy and being unique in some way. They will offer you exclusivity, they will feel warm and home-like, and they will make you feel like you belong there instead of just feeling like another number which you get from other branded and big corporate hotels.

Today we will be discussing the business side of these hotels, namely how to design, operate and develop your own. There are plenty of these around the world and some of the best ones we saw were boutique hotels Mexico city made with the help of

1. Design


When it comes to design this is where you can let your imagination run wild. These types of the hotel allow you to give your artistic side breathing room and allow it to do whatever it desires. From colours, and materials to the arrangement. The best thing about these types of hotels is that every room can and should be different. This is where you can customize every room to your liking and make something unique and special for all your customers. There are some rules though but they will depend on your theme and what you are trying to achieve. What we see most in these hotels is the usage of different fabrics and colours and the usage of furniture that is not identical. You can let your imagination run wild with coffee tables, bed end sofas and lamps. Everything can be in one tone or you can mix and match to your liking giving each room something special of its own.

The most important thing here is to give each room its special feel and warmth, this is the thing all guests appreciate and are welcoming as a positive change from the regular corporate hotels, as we already mentioned above.

2. Development


Like any other business, you need to know that there will be competition, luckily for you a lot less similar competition than it would be if you are opening a standard hotel or hostel. Despite this fact, you will need a careful business plan and careful organisation. You will need to do a couple of things:

  1. How is it going to stand out from other boutique hotels you need to define what kind of business you are going to be running? Do your research about other boutique hotels in your area, if there are any, try to see what are they doing and how and make yours better and stand out more. It is all a game of who can do it better and differently.
  2. What your target audience is another thing you need to think about, and this is a bit tricky because as we already said there is a select group of people that likes this type of hotel. There are plenty of those who are more than OK with corporate big hotels and there are those that don’t care where they sleep as long as they can get some rest while doing what they do. So, your target audience is small and your marketing must be spot on to attract them and maybe even tickle the interest of the other two groups.
  3. ROI or return on investment is also important here. Many people do this because they like it and because they want to do something with their time and knowledge. There are boutique hotels that operate with a small return while others are just skating by. If you want a successful business you need a detailed plan of your finances and you need to have someone do the math for you and show you if you will have and how much your ROI will be.

3. Operation


When it comes to this part, operating this type of hotel will depend on many things and different factors. One of those is if this boutique hotel is a year-round thing or if will it be a seasonal thing. According to that particular plan, you will have a different type of operation, business organisation and management of staff and everything else. The best thing to do when trying to determine the operation of your boutique hotel is to analyse other similar properties around you and see how and when are they getting booked. This will show you what you can do and how you need to set up regarding your surroundings. When it comes to business you never do anything without doing proper research and analysis. This will tell you everything and help you prepare, plan and position better.

As you can see there are a few things you need to consider but overall setting up and running a boutique hotel isn’t that big of a deal. It is a business like any other when it comes to numbers, marketing and planning, but it stands out from all others because this type of hotel is something that has a soul. It will be different; it will be something that others have to get used to so don’t expect crazy money right off the bat. You will need to do a lot of marketing and a lot of work to get it known and understood, but the best part is that once you get out there and people see and enjoy what you have to offer, the news and interest spreads far and fast.