Sincerely, BLLA

Panel Spotlight: Creative Deal Structures + Operational Insights

We recently chatted with the experts on the "Creative Deal Structures + Operational Insights" panel to give our community a glimpse into their though...

We recently chatted with the experts on the “Creative Deal Structures + Operational Insights” panel to give our community a glimpse into their thoughts on boutique hotel investment. Take a look below!

Atit Jariwala, CEO of Bridgeton

BLLA: How have boutique hotel operations evolved over the last 2 years?

AJ: “During the Covid-19 pandemic, it became harder to properly service guests in the high touch way we are used to. This has led to an evolution over the past two years in the implementation of technology that covers what would normally have been done manually. New technologies are being built every day that are making it easier to operate and to provide great guest experiences.”

BLLA: What are the top 3 pain points that independent boutique hotels have today in terms of operations?

AJ: “Recruiting is currently one of the main pain points in independent boutique hotels today, and this is being felt across the industry. Additionally, cost increases across the board on all products, especially the niche items boutique hotels offer, have been a pain point.”  

BLLA: Why do you believe in the boutique hotel movement?

AJ: “The beauty about the boutique space is that you can strengthen and connect to the fabric of the community – you are not confined to a certain set of rules. For example, we have dedicated our entire second floor of our Tribeca property to cultural happenings designed to benefit New York nonprofits.” 

BLLA: Why are you excited to speak at the Boutique Hotel Investment Conference?

AJ: “I am looking forward to being able to meet with new folks within the industry to share my experiences and garner new perspectives from other voices within the boutique space. A lively discussion of the industry and our own respective projects can only help to push us all forward.”

Clark Hanrattie, Partner at HEI Hotels & Resorts

BLLA: How have boutique hotel operations evolved over the last 2 years?

CH: “The last two years have forced all operators to reconsider exactly what is most important to their guest’s experience, and then devise more cost-effective ways to consistently deliver on those brand expectations.”

BLLA: What are the top 3 pain points that independent boutique hotels have today in terms of operations? 

CH: “Among the top three challenges to operations today are labor shortages, inflationary pressures, and slow business transient recovery.”

BLLA: Why do you believe in the boutique hotel movement?

CH: “In a world of vast and increasing options, the boutique hotel creates an intimate and personal experience that enables a highly differentiated guest connection for both business and leisure travelers. This connection is critical to long-term success.”

BLLA: Why are you excited to speak at the Boutique Hotel Investment Conference?

CH: “Having been active in the hotel industry for almost three decades, I remain passionate about the impact we have on travelers away from home and excited by the creative risk-taking that has defined the evolution of the boutique hotel sector.”

Andrea Foster, Senior Vice President of Development at Marcus Hotels & Resorts

BLLA: How have boutique hotel operations evolved over the last 2 years?

AF: “Boutique hotels (including independent & lifestyle) are the fastest growing sector in our industry. Leisure travelers increasingly sought more unique and personalized experiences, and the impact of COVID-19 had travelers viewing smaller hotels as safer. Social media and influencers have played a major role in their marketing.” 

BLLA: What are the top 3 pain points that independent boutique hotels have today in terms of operations?

AF: “The reliance on external vendors/suppliers for ancillary services (guest experiences), combined with limited staffing to coordinate. Boutique and independent properties often do not have the same budget resources, brand-level marketing, and field marketing resources of their branded counterparts for reinforcement during challenging times. Though high-tech can often seem synonymous with boutique and independent properties, as they are not restricted from adoption by any brand standards, boutique and independent properties have more limited resources and do not benefit from the R&D budgets of big brands.”

BLLA: Why do you believe in the boutique hotel movement?

AF: “Boutique and independent hotels allow for freedom of personality and expression in the guest experience. It is the opportunity to create what has not been before, buttressed by operational excellence, deep market knowledge, and local connections, delivering a memorable experience that is uniquely exceptional, such that it cannot be replicated.”

BLLA: Why are you excited to speak at the Boutique Hotel Investment Conference?

AF: “The ability to birth and develop new ideas and innovations in the boutique and independent hotel space comes from creativity and experience brought together in this interactive discourse. It will be both refreshing and rewarding to connect with other industry leaders in person this year.”


Join us on June 8th for the Boutique Hotel Investment Conference live at The Plaza Hotel Grand Ballroom in New York City!

Register here!

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