Both vacation trips and business travel have undergone major changes in recent years. With the emergence of destination resorts and hotel-conference centers that are sometimes akin to small cities, the hospitality industry places new emphasis on both ambiance and service, visual delight as well as comfort. Beautiful landscapes that are calming and inviting have moved far beyond stately trees and a manicured lawn. Distinctive landscape features should be viewed as essential components for a luxury complex, and bonus amenities at even the smallest boutique establishment.
8 Hotel Landscaping Maintenance Tips
You probably know the phrase: You only have one chance to make a great first impression. We at ASI Landscape Management agree that “curb appeal” is important, but we also contend that delight comes from unusual features, the kind of unexpected treasures that are so often missing at sleek, modern hotels.
The Natural Appeal of a Garden
Park-like grounds and perfectly manicured gardens are laudable features of the world’s classic hotels. But even urban hotels reap benefits from colorful plantings that add color and scent the air with their blooms. Achieve the desired effect through planting areas adjacent to the main entry, large planters full of greenery and seasonal flowers to soften the hard surfaces around the pool deck, and hanging baskets to highlight an outdoor bar or patio. Use trellises and vine-covered ramadas to shade comfortable seating areas and encourage quiet conversation.
Hotel Landscaping Maintenance Caters to the Weekday Guest
The number of business travelers has risen dramatically over the past decade. Even though a digital, high-tech economy has brought other changes, companies spend nearly $112 billion on domestic travel annually. Add to that an increasing number of foreign business travelers, and it’s easy to see the advantages of providing outdoor space for business travelers to meet colleagues, unwind after a long day, enjoy a snack and some personal time, or simply relax. While many travelers appreciate a hotel gym, an equal number might relish an outdoor jogging track, exercise stations in the garden, and a peaceful retreat at the end of a busy day. Hammocks, old-fashioned rocking chairs on the patio, or yard swings fill the bill perfectly.
Offer Alternatives to the Pool Deck
Consider a Zen garden or a sculpture court — a place to refresh mind and body alike. There is something soothing about the simplicity of such spaces, and only minimal upkeep is required. Add benches for contemplation or modern chaises so guests can lose themselves in the pages of a good book. You might be surprised at the popularity of such pleasing, low-key spaces. Encourage your hotel guests to spend time out of doors, to enjoy a snack or a drink at your “outdoor cafe,” to dine under the stars, have a snack in the garden, or enjoy a cocktail around the outdoor fireplace. Just as homeowners are “buying in” to the idea of outdoor rooms, tap into the possibilities of outdoor spaces at your hotel.
Create Family-friendly Retreats
Give energetic children a place to unwind. Create a sandbox, establish a picnic area for families (and offer blankets to lend authenticity!), or install a swing set and a few bouncy sit-on animals. Add chairs and benches for supervising parents, and you’ll have happy guests of all ages. Create a “learning garden” by planting specimen trees, shrubs, and flowers with accompanying plaques that tell a story. Our talented landscape designers can help you select interesting plants for the garden.
Give in to Whimsy with Hotel Landscaping Maintenance
Adults, as well as children, like to indulge in outdoor fun and games. And we don’t necessarily mean a putting green or a sand volleyball court. Add the unexpected: A horseshoe pit, a bocce ball court or a traditional croquet lawn. They might not appeal to everyone, but they would almost certainly prompt smiles and attract people to “sit a spell and watch a match.” Another idea: A lifesize chess or checkerboard, complete with the pieces that invite participation. If that’s too much of a stretch, let guests check out board games to play at tables in an “outdoor game room.”
Resort Landscaping Maintenance – Trade a Familiar Water Feature for a Firepit
No one disputes the calming influence of water, but it’s also hard to beat the good times that evolve from a good conversation around a warming fire. The combination of comfortable “put-your-feet-up” outdoor lounges and ottomans, adjacent coffee or bar service, and other congenial guests will lead to impromptu good times. Resort landscaping doesn’t have to be formal to be effective, and easy-care, low-maintenance features can be extremely welcoming.
Light Up the Night
Move away from the neon and bright lights, and light up your hotel landscape with glowing orbs nestled at ground level, artistic light posts, solar pathway lighting, and “firefly” strings that entwine tree trunks and add drama to the scene. Focus spotlights on garden art, or projects changing patterns of colored lights on a wall. Be generous with safety and security lighting.
Rely on Professional Advice for Resort and Hotel Landscaping Maintenance
At ASI, we believe that landscaping is the icing on the cake for a hotel property, as well as an integral part of its appeal. Rely on our professional team for creative insights and the expertise to help you create a one-of-a-kind outdoor environment that will set your property apart from all others. It’s no longer necessary to have acres of greenery, a showy fountain, or an on-staff gardener and crew.
What is necessary, we think, is that hotel owners and operators take care to create beautiful, nurturing, welcoming environments — both indoors and out — that strike a chord with guests. They will not only enjoy every minute of their stay, but they’ll want to return, not only for the comfortable bed and the service but for the beauty and the fun of the outdoor landscape. It takes more, however than freshly mowed grass and colorful flowers.
ASI Landscape Maintenance serves has offices in Tampa and Orlando, and serves clients throughout Florida. Our staff designers, horticulturists, and construction professionals can help you plan a contemporary hotel landscape with distinctive features. Our professional construction teams will bring your ideas to life, and you can leave your resort landscaping maintenance to our professional crew. From beginning to end, the ASI team can ensure that your landscape will mature into the kind of showplace that you envision. Contact us now to discuss your ideas; let us help you build a unique outdoor environment.