You arrive at the hotel, walk through the front door, and bam – jaw meet floor. Vaulted ceilings, artistic light fixtures, the gentle notes of a piano sonata. Areas like lobbies, lounges, restaurants, and hallways shape those all-important first impressions for hotel guests. Do them right, and they become the highlight of a guest’s stay rather than forgettable transitions from A to B. So how do you craft public spaces that wow? In this guide, I’ll share insider design tips to help you transform functional Public Area Hotel into fabulous showstoppers:
What Are Public Area Hotel?
Public Area Hotel refer to the spaces inside and outside the property that are openly accessible to guests as well as outside visitors and local patrons. Both indoor and outdoor spaces fall under the hotel’s public areas.
Some prime examples of hotel public areas include:
- Entrances and lobbies
- Banquet halls and event spaces
- Corridors and elevators
- Public restrooms
- Recreation zones like pools, gyms, gardens
- Parking facilities
These multifunctional spaces serve several pivotal purposes:
Thoughtful design and diligent upkeep of public areas enhances overall guest comfort, convenience, and enjoyment. Elements like plush lobby seating, relaxing poolside lounges, and inviting on-site eateries create pleasant spaces for guests to unwind and spend time. This adds value to their stay.
Versatile event venues like grand ballrooms, outdoor terraces, or banquet halls allow hotels to host large conferences, weddings, social galas and other events.
Design factors like lobby decor, furniture, lighting, music, aroma, and even staff service levels showcase the hotel’s brand personality and service standards to guests. Luxury hotels pay meticulous attention to detail in public areas.
Public areas like lobbies contain pivotal amenities and facilities for guests including front desks for check-in, concierge services, luggage storage, and public restrooms for visitor convenience. They facilitate access to core hotel services.
Certain back-of-house public spaces like loading bays, waste disposal zones, and staff entrances play an important role in enabling smooth hotel operations on a daily basis.
Types of Public Area Hotel
Hotel public areas categorize into three main types:
Front-of-House Public Spaces
These refer to the public zones that are openly accessible to all hotel guests as well as outside visitors. Examples include:
- Main lobbies and reception areas
- Lounges and lobby seating spaces
- On-site restaurants, bars, and cafes
- Banquet halls and event venues
- Corridors, elevators, staircases
- Public restrooms
- Hotel exterior grounds like pools, gardens, walkways
Heart-of-House Public Spaces
These public areas pertain to the behind-the-scenes functional zones used primarily by hotel staff and personnel.
- Staff entrances, locker rooms, cafeteria
- Maintenance and utility zones
- Loading docks and delivery bays
- Trash collection and waste disposal areas
These refer to hotel public zones that have restricted access for some guests only.
- Executive lounges
- Club lounges
- Kids play zones and activity centers
- Fitness centers, spas, adult-only pools
- Business centers
Certain public spaces are commonly found in most hotels, either due to functional needs or being facilities guests have come to expect.
The lobby is often the first space guests see when entering a hotel. The lobby’s design, decor, furnishings, layout, lighting, aroma, and staff service set the tone for the rest of a guest’s hotel experience.
Having restaurants, cafes, bakeries and bars on the premises allows guests the convenience of dining within the hotel across both casual and formal options.
Large, flexible banquet halls and ballrooms enable hotels to host weddings, social events, conferences, and corporate parties under one roof. State-of-the-art audiovisual capabilities, banquet catering, customized decor and outstanding service make these event spaces popular.
Clean, well-stocked public restrooms complete with facilities like baby changing stations are essential in lobbies, restaurants, banquet halls, lobby bars, poolside areas and more based on foot traffic. Restroom maintenance and cleanliness are of paramount importance.
Many upscale or full-service hotels have dedicated concierge desks in the lobby manned by staff who provide personalized assistance with reservations, transportation, event bookings, restaurant recommendations or any other special requests. This adds a conveniences for guests.
Designated on-site parking facilities like surface parking lots, underground garages, or valet parking services enable safe, convenient parking access for hotel guests, visitors, and staff members.
Outdoor public zones lend hotels expansive space while connecting guests with nature and fresh air. Like beautifully landscaped gardens, rooftop terraces or decks with scenic views, poolside cabanas, exterior seating areas, and more.
The behind-the-scenes public areas like loading bays, trash collection points, housekeeping storage rooms, maintenance zones, staff entrances and administrative offices enable the inner operations of a hotel to run smoothly on a daily basis.
Why Public Areas Matter for Hotels
Well-designed and properly maintained public spaces are critically important for hotels for several reasons:
The appearance, landscaping and visual aesthetic of exterior public spaces as well as arrival areas like the porte-cochère, driveway and lobby entrance shape those all-important very first impressions about the hotel in guests’ minds. A classy, elegant lobby and entranceway immediately convey an upscale or luxury brand.
The upkeep, functionality, ambience and service levels in public zones subtly represent the hotel’s overall quality standards and service philosophy. Details like malfunctioning fixtures or unkempt furnishings reflect poorly. Guests notice fine details.
Design factors like interior decor, furniture, amenities, music, aroma, lighting and more in lobbies, lounges, eateries and other public zones define the vibe and guest experience. Cohesive design creates comfortable spaces guests enjoy spending time in.
Having versatile event venue spaces suitable for hosting large weddings, social functions and corporate conferences coupled with popular on-site dining outlets drives additional revenues for hotels. Their aesthetic appeal, service and convenience attracts patronage.
Proper maintenance and upkeep of furnishings, fixtures, surfaces, lighting, amenities and electronics in public areas minimizes risks of accidents like slips or falls. Adequate lighting deters crime. Timely cleaning contained spills before they become a hazard.
Thoughtful layouts and placement of key facilities in public areas allows hotel staff to deliver the best guest services. For instance, an efficiently designed front desk space enables prompt, streamlined check-ins.
Key Design Factors for Public Area Hotel
When planning and designing hotel public areas, some key factors planners must consider include:
The overall look, layout, decor, furnishings, amenities, and vibe should become an extension of the hotel’s brand image and themes. For instance, an eco-resort may use more natural materials, greenery, and energy-saving fixtures.
Public area layouts and placements must factor in expected pedestrian traffic flows, circulation, usage times, and peak occupancy periods. For example, restaurants must accommodatemeal rush hours without congestion. High-traffic zones need ample space.
As public spaces serve diverse guests, their design and amenities need to enable accessibility for guests with disabilities. Features include ramps, elevators, widened doorways, lowered service counters, Braille signs etc.
Lighting, music, echoes, temperature and aroma define the vibe of each space. For instance, lively bars need vibrant lighting and upbeat music while spas require soothing natural tones and aromas.
Integrating tech amenities like charging stations, interactive kiosks, WiFi, AV systems, room automation, digital signage etc. adds convenience as well as a modern touch.
Public areas can provide additional revenue streams through activities like retail zones, dining outlets, display advertising, room bookings via lobby kiosks etc. Their design should also support operational efficiency.
Adequate lighting, CCTV coverage, smoke detectors, alarm systems, lockers, and trained security personnel provide round-the-clock safety. Public spaces should also have well-marked emergency exits.
Diligent cleaning and careful ongoing maintenance are essential for Public Area Hotel. Here are some key best practices hotels must follow:
Formulate daily, weekly, and monthly cleaning checklists and regimens for each public area zone like the lobby, restaurants, activity centers etc. Provide adequate housekeeping staff. Have deep cleaning shifts at night.
Invest in heavy-duty industrial grade equipment like commercial vacuum cleaners, steam cleaners, mops, polishers, and scrubbers that can withstand the heavy usage in public hotel spaces.
Train cleaning staff thoroughly on using equipment safely, following chemical handling procedures, maintaining supplies, and general safety protocols. Provide PPE gear.
Use only green certified, non-toxic cleaning products suitable for each surface material like carpets, stone, wood, glass, upholstery etc. Avoid mixing chemicals. Read all MSDS.
Cordon off slick spaces and place warning signs when cleaning. Have staff positioned to immediately wipe any spills or leaked water. Eliminate tripping hazards.
Do periodic comprehensive deep cleaning tasks like exterior pressure washing, window and air duct cleaning, carpet shampooing, stone polishing, awning scrubbing etc.
Closely track and continuously replenish soaps, paper supplies, and other toiletries and consumables in all public restrooms based on usage. Keep logistic supplies stocked.
Fix any damaged or malfunctioning furnishings, fixtures, fittings and equipment promptly to maintain visual appeal and safety.
Managers must inspect all public areas at least twice daily to check for cleanliness, supplies, proper maintenance, and safety compliance.
With constant diligent care following protocols, public areas can maintain excellent sanitation and appeal.
Beyond cleanliness and visual ambience, hotels can further enhance public areas to create memorable guest experiences through:
Plush, comfortable seating, high-end lighting fixtures, pleasant floral arrangements, art installations and water features create luxurious spaces guests feel pampered in.
Calming instrumental music and pleasant natural aromas like lavender or eucalyptus subtly relax guests. Upbeat music can energize spaces like gyms.
Providing handy conveniences like charging stations, luggage storage, stroller loans, and hotel-branded sunscreen, sunglasses or hats add thoughtful touches.
Creative, engaging signage for directions or describing spaces and clear visual cues aid wayfinding.
Having friendly staff stationed in key areas to proactively offer assistance, give directions or make recommendations enhances service levels.
Actively gather guest feedback on the ambience, facilities, and service in public spaces. Quickly address any concerns or maintenance issues that impact experiences.
Ultimately, Public Area Hotel that thoughtfully welcome, wow and comfort guests drive higher customer satisfaction, lifetime value and revenues. While meticulous construction is important, it is the emotional essence of a space that makes it unforgettable. When public areas move beyond functionality to embed themselves in the hospitality experience, they elevate the guest journey.
More than passing zones, optimized public areas become the embodiment of a hotel’s gracious service and brand story.