Hotels have begun launching their own festivals in a move designed to attract more customers to their establishments.
Festival-goers often choose hotels as their choice of lodging, but the accommodation industry has begun to tap into the popularity of music festivals and are now doubling as festival venues. In an effort to attract more travellers, hotels have been launching their own events.
In December, the Hotel Paseo in Palm Desert, California put on an ‘Airstream Palooza’, a free music festival arrayed around renovated airstream trailers. In November, the Careyes resort in Jalisco, Mexico, hosted its third annual music festival, Ondalinda, a bacchanal that Vogue has called ‘the luxe Burning Man.’ In Bali, Indonesia, pop stars Fergie and Liam Payne performed at the Mulia hotel’s music-fuelled, Labor Day weekend bash. In February, EDM DJs Calvin Harris and Zedd headlined the opening weekend festival of the Vidanta resort in Los Cabos, Mexico.
W Hotels, a subsidiary of Marriott, came up with its Wake Up Call festival after finding that its target customers tend to go as hard during their off hours as they do during their working ones. It also fed into the psyche of those that don’t want to deal with the issues associated with traditional, multi-day festivals such as the crowds and logistical planning essential in attending.
Anthony Ingham, the global brand leader of W Hotels, which has 54 locations worldwide, told the New York Times: “They’re 25- to 45-years-old, well travelled, affluent professionals, mainly, who like to have fun and burn the candle at both ends.”
The first three Wake Up Calls took place recently in Hollywood, Barcelona, and Bali, with W Dubai scheduled to host the fourth next year.
Wake Up Call Barcelona took place the third weekend in September and welcomed 4,300 attendees, with headliners like Martin Solveig and Robin Schulz.
Fifty rooms were booked before the planning of Wake Up Call Barcelona, and W offered to relocate those guests unwilling to take part, said Ingham.
Alan Conde, a management consultant based in Madrid who spent 50,000 points on a festival package told the New York Times: “It’s the perfect excuse to do things that otherwise you don’t have the inspiration to do.
“What I don’t like about festivals so much is the crowds. It’s very difficult to move, you have to make lines for everything. Suddenly, you have this concept, which I think is very creative.”