When approaching projects within the hospitality industry, engineering consultants must weigh the wants and needs of many different stakeholders – from corporate decision makers and hotel management personnel, to local authorities and the guests themselves. It’s a fine balance for engineering designers to maintain a hotel’s brand standards, meet code requirements, and keep guests happy and comfortable, all at the same time.
RTM Engineering Consultants has worked on diverse hospitality projects, developing expertise in the nuances of their mechanical, electrical, and plumbing prerequisites. Our engineering design teams have observed the following three trends that are shaping the industry.
Water scarcity is a global issue that corporations and consumers are paying more attention to. The hospitality industry is notorious for water consumption: in guest rooms, through maintaining landscaping and outdoor areas, and in laundry and dining facilities. Many hotel brands are making a more concentrated effort to reduce water waste and improve cost savings. Hotels are updating bathroom fixtures, installing low-flow plumbing, and replacing washing machines, dryers, dishwashers, and other appliances with more efficient models.
The hospitality sector’s focus on sustainability is not just limited to water conservation. Hotel brands are also striving to optimize their energy use by installing LED light fixtures in guest rooms and replacing old appliances with new, more energy-efficient versions. Additionally, lighting controls and occupancy sensors placed within guest rooms can help reduce energy use when rooms are unoccupied. Some of these changes can result in dramatic energy and cost savings, while having no negative impact on the guest experience.
Depending on their audience, hotel brands have different priorities for the facilities and amenities offered to guests. But whether they cater to vacationing families or frequent business travelers, all brands are interested in providing a comfortable and convenient experience. Family hotels located near the beach, for example, are prioritizing resort-like amenities, so guests have everything they need on-site: beach access, outdoor pool, rooftop deck, underground parking, and a restaurant/bar. Business hotels, on the other hand, may also have a full restaurant, as well as hot breakfast, coffee stands, meeting spaces, and banquet halls.
The challenge for engineering design teams working on these projects is to make sure the construction and installation are hidden from guests’ view as much as possible. Mechanical equipment for a rooftop bar, for example, must be integrated into the space’s aesthetics and concealed behind screens to maintain a pleasant atmosphere for guests.
Learn more about RTM’s hospitality expertise.