HOFM minor students create new hotel ‘soft brands’

Added on: 02-Dec-2016  |  Last modified on: 02-Dec-2016  |  Category: hotel & facility   | Comments Off on HOFM minor students create new hotel ‘soft brands’

In a week on ‘Hotel Real Estate: Design & Branding’, students of two minors of the Academy of Hotel and Facility Management joined forces and designed four new hotel ‘soft brands’.

Soft brands enable independent hotels to tap into the chains’ marketing and distribution systems, with only minor brand standards to adhere to. Over the past few years, pretty much all international hotel chains developed soft brands. 

The students in question are in the minors ‘The Business of Hotels’ and ‘Hospitality Innovation & Imagineering’. The latter is a cooperation with Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences in Helsinki, Finland. The idea behind this experimental set-up was to explore and benefit from ‘cross-pollination’ opportunities between these students, as they have very different interests, knowledge and skill sets. In other words, it was a good way to experience the cooperative effect of the so-called T-shaped person. That is someone who shares their depth of skill while keeping a disposition for collaboration across disciplines. This theory is broadly advocated, amongst others, by Tim Brown, CEO of IDEO Design Consultancy.

Their pitches (in mixed teams) concluded an intensive week, in which many industry guest speakers offered their perspective on the topic. The teams also visited the Nassau Hotel Breda, an Autograph Collection by Marriott property.

The four new soft brands are called Spellbinding, Touch, Tavata and Urban Rascal. The jury was impressed by the quality of the presentations. After careful deliberation the jury proclaimed ‘Touch’ the winner. This brand consisted of the students Aniek Pennings, Mitzi Geluk, Thom Duijvelaar, Nora  Hentilä and Nick van der Sluijs. Their proposed collection of ‘destination’ upper upscale leisure hotels stayed closest to the soft brand concept. The jury members indicated in their report that they couldn’t wait to be able to ‘Stay in Touch’.

Source: Academy of Hotel and Facility Management

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