The sharing economy seems like it’s the only thing on the internet people have been talking about lately. It probably won’t disappear anytime soon, especially with Marriott’s plan to launch communal apartments.
Marriott will be introducing shared apartments to hotels under its Element brand. The group obtained the eco-conscious, long-stay brand after merging with Starwood in 2016. They now plan to put a communal apartment on each floor of their hotels around the world. Among them will be a new hotel at London’s Tobacco Dock, pitched to open in 2019.
The communal apartments will have three to four bedrooms centred around a common area, which will have a kitchen and lounge.
The aim is to offer both the social qualities of a hostel and the privacy and quality amenities of a hotel.
Apartments will sleep between six and 16 guests. They could be people travelling in groups, such as families and business travellers. However, the apartments are also intended for people travelling on their own who want to be able to socialise with other travellers.
Other new Element hotels planned for the next few years include Ubud in Bali this summer, and Queen’s, New York in 2020. The communal apartment concept doesn’t have a launch date yet but it could be along soon.
Other moves aligning with the sharing economy in London include La Suite West teaming up with short-term rental landlords. The move allows renters to use facilities at the hotel.
Marriott announced the new concept at a pop-up innovation lab at the Americas Lodging Investment Summit in Los Angeles. They also revealed a new food and drink program at their Aloft hotels.
Plans include touchscreen breakfast orders and portable wine carts that automatically pour a glass of wine when activated by a key card. The Aloft London ExCel will presumably be receiving these new features.
If you’re looking for a more social hotel experience that’s not quite as social as a hostel, the new apartment concept from Element could work for you. But you’ll have to wait a couple of years to experience it in London.
Photo credits: Element Hotels, La Suite West.