David Phelps Discusses Boutique Hotel Trends with GlobeSt.com

Akin Gump real estate partner David Phelps participated in a Q&A column with GlobeSt.com on the growth of boutique hotels in downtown Los Angeles.

Phelps covered a wide range of topics, including the following:

  • What is driving the growth of boutique hotels now in the market? “A demand for unique, personalized hotel experiences has driven the growth of boutique hotels. Increasingly, consumers avoid staying at cookie-cutter chain hotels and instead opt for boutique hotels, which are typically upscale, smaller properties focused on design, technology, and local culture.”
  • Major chains have now begun to launch boutique brands. How has this affected boutique hotel brands, and what are they doing to stay competitive? “Some boutique hotel owners believe that boutique and lifestyle brands launched by hotel chains will not be serious competition to independent boutique hotels because, while chain-owned boutiques can imitate the boutique emphasis on modern design and technology, they critically lack the elements of genuine community and local personality that independent boutiques have.”
  • The hotel market in general has only recently rebounded. Give us a snapshot of the market now and where it is headed over the next 12 months. “2015 is poised to be one of the most successful years on record. Going forward I expect to see the further rise of the Millennials, which is now the fastest growing customer segment, and a resulting focus by hotels on interaction and experience including new lobby designs intended to create an interactive work, play and food and beverage experience.