The boss of a prominent travel agency group says social media – in particular, Instagram – is behind the rising popularity of smaller, specialised accommodation options.
Anthony Goldman, joint managing director of The Goldman Group and one of the many fabulous speakers at the upcoming Travel DAZE conference, said standalone, niche properties and spin-off boutique hotels created by major global brands are increasingly sought after, particularly among Millennial travellers.
Why? Because they see them as synonymous with the personalised, unique experiential travel they see on social media, according to Goldman.
“Boutique hotels are riding the wave of transformation that’s impacted the broader travel industry in recent years,” he said.
“In this internet age, established international brands are less appealing to many travellers, who increasingly seek inspiration from fellow travellers’ shared experiences, images and reviews.”
The Australian Luxury Traveller 2019 Report, conducted by the Goldman Group, revealed that more than one third of Australian travellers enjoy posting about their holidays online, and get holiday inspiration from their social media feeds
Notably, it’s Instagram fuelling the travel appetites of young Australians, and with the hashtag #holiday obtaining 124 million mentions on Instagram alone, Goldman said it’s easy to understand why.
“We have a lot of clients message us directly on Instagram and ask to book hotels featured in our posts or ask about destinations visited by our travel advisors,” he said.
“We also have people share screenshots of properties and destinations that they stumbled across on Instagram and want to discover for themselves.
“Instagram is fuelling travel decisions, and as a travel advisor, you cannot ignore the magnitude of influence this social media platform holds.”
Goldman also noted that the entry of Airbnb into the market also prompted travellers to seek unique, authentic accommodation.
“That is translating into the types of hotels our clients are requesting,” he said.
“They’re looking for properties with personality, including interesting interior design features, and are increasingly open to staying in lively urban neighbourhoods rather than traditional CBD locations.”