Hotels abandon convenience stores in favor of branded destination retail.

WHAT HAPPENED: Higher-end hospitality companies like W Hotels, the Line Hotel and Shinola are opening their doors to boutiques, upending the traditional toothbrush-and-soda hotel convenience stores.

Why it matters

  • During a time when the travel economy is gaining speed and more shopping is done on-demand and on the go, hotels can capitalize on stores selling products that act as extensions of the travel experience. Branded apparel and accessories let hotel visitors take an element of their stay home, whether to relive their trip or gift a souvenir to a friend. These items also market the hotel to new potential consumers.

  • Hotels can create a destination not only out of their location and hospitality, but also in their shopability—whether that means bringing in retail faces that attracts supplementary business from hotel visitors and passerbys, or creating an apparel and accessories brand in their own right. Luxury watch company Shinola epitomizes this in Detroit. After building a watch and leather factory in the city in 2011, it opened the doors to a Shinola hotel this January 2019. Not only is the new hotel a destination for a curated selection of retail stores and restaurants, but it also enables consumers to partake in a 360-degree Shinola-branded experience, down to the bathroom fixtures inspired by the company’s watches.