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Why the serviced apartments sector is expanding in Europe – words Al Woods
The rise of the sharing economy had an impact on many different industries. Hospitality is no exception to that trend.
Today, we may spot attractive listings of high-profile properties costing several thousand dollars a night on platforms such as Airbnb. A few years ago, that would be the domain of intermediary parties specialized in exclusive, luxury apartments.
Another indicative shift in the sector is the recent partnership between Airbnb and BridgeStreet Global Hospitality, a corporate serviced apartment platform that counts over 50,000 apartments in 60 different countries.
In Europe, serviced apartments have figured as niche products mainly focused on business travel. But the European market is undergoing a transformation driven by the increasing traveler demand for comfortable accommodation offers. Finding furnished apartments in Lausanne used to be next to impossible. Today, it’s no longer a challenge.
Serviced apartments sector in Europe
The European serviced apartment industry is now undergoing a profound change thanks to the appearance of a new type of travelers. When visiting a new destination, be it a business or leisure trip, these people want to make the most of their time in the new location by exploring everything it has to offer regarding restaurants, meeting spaces, attractions, and shopping.
These travelers value convenience and quality. That’s why they’re more likely to choose private apartments and limited service hotels rather than staying at a large hotel that belongs to an international chain. We can witness such diversified listings appear on platforms such as Booking.com or TripAdvisor that offer an integrated approach to analyzing the available lodging options.
This trend offers serviced apartment providers a unique opportunity for increasing their visibility to compete with hotels. Providers who choose to focus on soft factors such as communication, branding, exclusivity, and atmosphere will win in this sector – but only if they combine uniqueness with strategic cross-distribution throughout different online channels to cater to the needs of today’s travelers.