Boutiques have a multitude of incredible opportunities to surprise their guests. It’s been well established in multiple industry forecasts that guests are seeking out boutiques for a unique, fun and different experience.

But don’t stop there! Boutiques should surprise and even disrupt* their guest’s stay with a surprising and fun experience.

*(We’re using disrupt in a positive way here – don’t throw ice water on your guests in the middle of the night).

Our goals should be to build loyalty and increase the word-of-mouth. We want guests to use ALL CAPS to describe how incredible their experiences at our hotels were.

Here are a few examples:


You may have heard about this one.   ART-SERIES hotels in Australia are a series of three art-themed boutique hotels. Between December 15th, 2011 and January 15th, 2012, the hotels offered guests the opportunity to steal a Banksy original painting from one of their three hotels. If they stole the painting – they got to keep it.

It created an incredible storm of publicity for the hotel. People made cunning and hilarious attempts (even tennis star Serena Williams made an attempt). One intelligent guest walked away with a $15,000 Banksy painting, and had a great story to tell.


The Tennessee hotel company tied up with Dreamworks pictures to have some characters from its films like Shrek, Kung Fu Panda, and Madagascar, to interact and visit hotel guests around their hotels – during breakfast, at the poolside, etc. Imagine how exciting it would be to have a visit by your favorite animated character during your hotel stay?

So get creative. Teach your entire staff magic to surprise guests at every corner. Encourage guests to destroy a part of the hotel. Instead of hiring a painter to paint the walls in your rooms, have the guests paint whatever they want on their own.  The word-of-mouth and memorable benefits of these types of experiences far outweigh your costs of implementing them. The possibilities to surprise guests are endless – and only possible at a boutique hotel.

And keep us posted on any crazy things you decide to do!


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