Gavin Bailey, Operations Director at serviced apartment provider CitySuites talks about the Hygge trend that’s set to take the business travel market by storm this year
While Hygge, the popular new Danish lifestyle trend, may not have a direct translation in English, the concept is none the less proving highly popular in the UK. So much so it’s set to take the UK travel industry by storm in 2017.
Pronounced ‘Hoo-gah’, the trend essentially encompasses the concept of simplistic, cosy, cup-of-tea-under-a-blanket living. Think books, the smell of coffee, feeling warm and content and without any needs, and you have the concept in a nutshell.
The popularity of the Hygge trend has seen a rise in popularity throughout 2016, and the hype is set to grow further in 2017. It seems the concept of simplistic happiness and contentment is more aspirational now than ever. But how exactly does this impact the corporate travel industry? And why is it important that we sit up and take note with immediate effect?
Well, the answer is thankfully just as simple as the Hygge concept. There’s been a shift in consumer demand – gone are the days where customers aspired to lavish decor, a polished finish and a slick but often cold, minimalist look. The trend has swung half-circle, and we’re now seeing a new era dawn. The era of the genuine, authentic and accessible – people are no longer impressed by mass consumerism; it’s time to take stock and consider the real values at play here – the idea of wellbeing, home and security – and it’s reflected in the way we’re buying, living and even relaxing.
With this in mind, the shape of the business travel sector is about to be redefined, as customers search for a home from home, a place where they can relax, unwind and really submerge themselves in a sense of place. People want to experience the local scene, feel like they are a part of the space they’re staying in, and that they have room – both mentally and physically – to fully unwind.
At present there isn’t an awful lot on offer that helps business travellers to achieve these goals. If you consider the options available, you have B&Bs, hotels, cheap serviced apartments, company houses and obviously, there’s private accommodation providers such as Airbnb and Booking.com. And, while each of these services is succeeding in its own right, the variety of serviced apartments that tick the Hygge box by offering a cosy home from home feel while still offering all the facilities of a hotel is rare.
In 2016 we sat up and took note of this gap in the market and have delivered a new concept in luxury serviced apartments. A flexible home from home that provides customers with the opportunity to really unwind and switch off when away on business. It is this kind of concept that we’ll see more and more of over the next months – be it apps designed to help you relax in the corporate workspace, businesses adopting more wellbeing-focused programmes as part of their day to day, or accommodation providers connecting with the local community and bridging the gaps for consumers when it comes to providing a more authentic environment. People are no longer interested in disposable goods and mass consumption. They’re looking to reconnect with the community and live a more humanistic lifestyle, be it through supporting the environment, championing wellbeing in the workplace, or just surrounding themselves in a Hygge inspired home from home.
For more information on CitySuites, luxury serviced apartments based in the heart of Manchester’s business centre, visit citysuites.com.