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Plants Improve Occupancy, Retention Rates

Ren Worth Porte Cache

Why Plants and the Hospitality Industry Make Excellent Roommates

By Brenda Morgan

The hospitality industry is a highly competitive and an ever-evolving market which is all about FIRST IMPRESSION.

Guests want to feel welcomed upon arrival in every sense, therefore, success in the hotel industry is all about having the right look and feel. The appearance and design of a hotel while fundamental are critical to the overall guest experience.

Hotel general managers and owners are finding new ways to improve the aesthetics of their hotels, and one visual component that is increasing in popularity is the addition of live plants, appealing containers and other interior landscaping features from earth walls to living walls, which all add style, decadence and comfort.

Live plants in the reception area create a central focal point in a lobby and are also seen synonymous with luxury. Impressive indoor plants add ambiance to a room and help guests feel more at home and relaxed.

Plant Increase Revenue Per Guest

In addition to aesthetics, extensive research has shown that all plants can have numerous beneficial qualities including reducing stress, improving humidity levels, reducing background noise as well as improving employee productivity.

Because they create a relaxing mood and calm, they actually increase revenue per guest. Guests want to stay longer and return again and again, thus increasing repetitive business and increased occupancy.

The Opryland Hotel (Nashville, TN) enjoys occupancy rates of over 85% each year, which is well above a national average of 68% (Trends).

According to a scientific case study performed by Michael Evans, former associate professor of Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management at the VA Polytechnic Institute, the hotel’s highest occupancy rate is due to the largest investment in indoor gardens in the country.

Currently, there are 12 acres of indoor space with approximately 18,000 indoor plants (and 600 species) valued at well over $1 million. The rooms overlooking the gardens are the first to be reserved and command a higher premium price of at least $50 over rooms that do not offer the garden.

While this is one example, various studies continue to show that live plants can improve occupancy for hotels by as much as 17%!

Interior plants are an excellent design statement and a proven long term investment.  As soon as a guest walks on premises and into the hotel lobby, live plants and foliage will surround them with beauty and provide an overall pleasing first impression.

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