London hotel acquisitions rise 31% despite Brexit uncertainty

Hotel acquisitions and transactions across London rose by 31% in 2019, despite continued uncertainty around Brexit

The news comes following a hospitality conference held last week, which saw industry figures also discuss the need to “embrace change” regarding food services at hotels.

Research from guest experience management group HGEM revealed that 48% of people believe hotel food is “unappealing and too expensive”, whilst 67% of millennials are more likely to book hotels that accept external food deliveries.

A further highlight revealed that 5% of guests select a hotel based on restaurant alone. Chris Sheppardson, CEO at EPBH, said: “If only 5% of guests choose a hotel based on its restaurant, there is something clearly amiss.  

“We know that quality of hotel food is an issue and we know that people are looking to other services to fill that void, so there is a big opportunity here too. 

He added: “So-called ‘Dark kitchens’ are becoming a very popular solution for hotels in line with the increasing demand for delivered-in food and beverage, yet interestingly only one hotelier, out of 130 said their hotel was currently accepting externally delivered-in foods. It begs the question, as a sector are we really embracing the need for change?”

James Robson, a restaurateur at Mews at Mayfair, spoke further of this need for change within the industry.

He said: “The way that the external food delivery sector is coming into hotels today means that the industry has to step up its game.  

“The key message here is about providing more choice and in some cases that might mean a 24-hour service too. The days of having one restaurant in a hotel simply doesn’t cut it any more.”

The Evolution of Hotels conference saw a gathering of over 130 top hoteliers, restaurateurs, and leading hospitality figures, who gathered to discuss upcoming trends and insights within the industry.

The conference, held at Bird and Bird’s global HQ, was hosted by EP Business in Hospitality, in partnership with Bird & Bird, HVS and EHMA, and featured a line-up of 18 industry speakers. Key topics included the economic impact of Brexit, rising changes to service levels and consumer demand, the challenge of the wellness agenda and more. 

The gathering was designed to “unite the hotel industry in looking at new ways of working more effectively together across Europe as well as addressing current and future consumer expectations”. 

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