Hotels, motels, and resorts have all had to make some significant business adjustments due to COVID-19.
Your guests’ comfort, safety, and health have always been a top priority. Still, now you must deal with a wide range of other requirements and expenses -- from limiting room availability to how you handle in-room dining to cleaning schedules and systems.
Sustainability in the hotel industry has also become critically important, as more consumers choose brands based on their commitment to the environment.
One area of hotel design and maintenance that management may overlook is lighting. Although most operators know that lighting can significantly impact ambiance and security, they are just finding that the right lights can also contribute to guest mood and health. The bonus is that hotels can save thousands (if not millions) of dollars every year on energy expenses.
Why Lighting is So Important for Hotels, Motels, and Resorts
The guest experience starts as soon as someone drives by and arrives at your entryway. Navigation (especially at night) is essential. Weary travelers must easily find your check-in area and feel safe walking from parking areas to the lobby.
Common areas should be warm and inviting. Guests should be able to find what they’re looking for -- from greeter desk to restaurant options. Elevators and stairs should be well-lilt to build a sense of security.
The cost of lighting each guest room is approximately $2,196 per room per year. But scrimping on lamps and overhead lighting can make a guest’s stay uncomfortable. Today’s traveler expects some level of control over the lighting, heat, and cooling in their rooms, so features like dimmers or individual lighting controls are commonplace.
Resorts with pools, spas, and outdoor activity areas must create environments where visitors can relax and enjoy their time.
In short, every area of your venue has an impact on the quality and comfort of a guest’s stay.
Do not forget about the many people who work at your hotel, motel, or resort. If they can’t see well, the service they provide to your guests may suffer.
Are Lights Making Your Guests Sick?
Researchers link lighting directly to mood and sleep quality. The wrong types of lighting can result in:
- Lack of interest in activities
- Low energy
- Difficulty in concentrating
Buildings built before the 1990s often use fluorescent lights. This form of lighting may have a severe negative impact on human health. Guests and employees can’t see it, but these lights emit a flicker that can trigger nervous system events. They include jitters, fragmented focus, and irritability. The high temperatures of these lights also stimulate stress hormones and muscle tension. Heart rate, blood pressure, body temperature, and sleep all suffer.
Hotels today have committed to keeping their guests healthy and safe. They have invested millions in features like gym upgrades, spas, and in-room fitness services in some cases. But a straightforward way to contribute to guest health sits overhead and on bedside tables in every room.
Also think about the restaurants and shops within your lodging and the “behind the scenes” areas like laundries. You may take your lighting for granted, but it’s a vital aspect of your business operations.
Employee Health is Important Too
The hotel industry employs more than 2 million people. To run your hotel, motel, or resort smoothly, you need each of them to be healthy, focused, and productive.
As noted above, the wrong lighting can result in a lack of sleep and irritability. But think too about how absenteeism has an impact on your ability to deliver best-in-class service.
The right lighting enables hotel employees to make sure your building stays clean and safe. Food preparation and serving, room cleaning, and laundry are all tasks that require proper lighting. The quality of service delivery is dependent on workers’ ability to see what they are doing at all times. Dirty dishes or linens can spread disease and result in negative reviews.
Lights Keep Your Bottom Line Healthy Too
The COVID-19 pandemic has hit the hotel industry especially hard, with 71 percent of hotels expected to close within six months without financial relief.
Switching your lighting to LED lighting can be part of that relief, with annual savings of as much as 60 percent on energy costs. Here is a breakdown of how you can save.
You don’t need to invest your dollars in this conversion. Plus, ongoing maintenance costs are lower with LED lighting.
Guest health and satisfaction, employee well-being, and financial health are three of the significant benefits of looking at your lighting system. You’ll enjoy short-term benefits and save money (and perhaps your business) in the long-run.
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