As restrictions start to ease in certain spots across the globe, hospitality establishments are coming up with unique ways to welcome patrons back safely. A Michelin-starred restaurant and hotel in Virginia is turning empty tables into theatrical displays, and now a Swedish hotel a few hours north of Gothenburg is getting creative.
Realizing their overnight reservations were severely hurting, Stadt hotel recently turned their hotel suites into an extension of their restaurant.
"Around March 10, we started seeing a rapid decline of hotel reservations, restaurant guests, and conference business. We knew we would see a drop in business, but we were in no way prepared for how quickly and how hard it was going to hit us," said Jesper Alfredsson, General Manager at Stadshotellet in Lidköping, about a two-hours drive north of Gothenburg. "We had lost over 70% of our business. We were open, and we had our staff, but far too few guests. At a brainstorming meeting, someone said, "What if we host and serve guests in the hotel rooms?'"
Yes, rather than reserve a table, guests reserve a room in which they enjoy a lovely dinner. Instead of being escorted to a table, you are shown to your reserved room. Once in the room, you will find the menu with items like steak tartare, toast Skagen, homemade ice cream, and cocktails. Once you've decided on your meal, you simply call to place your order.
The rooms are booked for 2.5 hours for groups of two to 12 people with a full menu from the hotel's restaurant available. It's essentially a few hours of room service.
"Guests have appreciated this new style of dining as a great alternative to sitting in a restaurant with many others," said Alfredsson. "People still want to go out and be well cared for and have an experience, and in this way, we can give them one that's a bit more solitary, but still just as special."