What's a BOUTIQUE Hotel?

Mar 7th, 2008, 12:16 PM
  #1  
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What's a BOUTIQUE Hotel?

Though i have some notion of what a boutique hotel is i find it hard to define

They seem to be en vogue, popping up everywhere and very expensive. that's about all i know except maybe they're smaller and more intimate?

What's the difference between a boutique hotel and a regular hotel in the same price range?
PalenQ is offline  
Mar 7th, 2008, 12:34 PM
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boutique hotel translates to well designed, usually trendier. Mostly refers to design, not a chain.

In theory it should be smaller, more attentive and intimate, but that is not always true. The W would be considered a "boutique hotel" and at this point it is just a chain.
cherrybomb is offline  
Mar 7th, 2008, 12:35 PM
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"Boutique" hotels are a trend that started - where else? - in New York City. There they were defined as smaller and more intimate than regular hotels - not that difficult in NYC where many hotels have hundreds of rooms - with a "design" edge, i.e., minimalist rather than pseudo-Louis XIV. And they were more expensive than "regular" hotels.

Now, many pretentious people say that they want a "boutique" hotel when all they mean is that they do not want a typical chain hotel. In Europe, the term is pretty meaningless, since almost all hotels are smaller and more intimate than chain hotels. There are, though, some hotels in Europe that cater to the "boutique" fad by offering edgy design at inflated prices.
Zerlina is offline  
Mar 7th, 2008, 12:41 PM
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For me it just means small luxury hotel (of course, very expensive). There are many places that call themselves "boutique" but really they aren't, they are just a plain old small hotel ...
kenderina is offline  
Mar 7th, 2008, 12:41 PM
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That fits in with the Beatles-themed Hard Days Night Hotel in Liverpool

i saw it describe itself as a 'boutique hotel' which raised the question in my mind

and that hotel obviously has a special decor but over 100 rooms and very expensive it seems

thanks for your responses
PalenQ is offline  
Mar 8th, 2008, 12:51 PM
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I think of Boutique hotels as smaller, pricier, independent places, not part of a chain. They may also offer more variety of amenities to the guest - you know the Bathtub Menu, or Pillow Menu and such things.
sheri_lp is offline  
Mar 8th, 2008, 02:35 PM
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What started as a specialized term referring to smaller, well designed places has been co-opted and is now used to describe everything from architectural gems with brilliant services to tiny dumps. Remember it is a self-applied marketing term, so research beyond the ad before booking.
Seamus is offline  
Mar 8th, 2008, 02:45 PM
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I think of Boutique hotels as smaller, pricier, independent places, not part of a chain. They may also offer more variety of amenities to the guest - you know the Bathtub Menu, or Pillow Menu and such things

While I think the second part is true, I would think you might be surprised as to how many of the boutique hotels are part of a chain. Indeed, in the US, the Kimpton chain has something like 40 properties.

Others, while not part of a chain, often belong to one of the upscale marketing alliances, like the Small Luxury Hotels of the World.

All that being said, I have learned to take hotel pronouncements that they are "boutique" with a grain of salt. Sometimes they are genuinely more stylish and comfortable. Other times they are just smaller and think boutique sounds better than small.
travelgourmet is offline  
Mar 10th, 2008, 11:12 AM
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Kind of like calling a restaurant a "bistro" because it sounds better, even though a bistro is more like a cafe/tabac kind of place.
Travelnut is offline  
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