Weekend Property

Serviced apartment operators prepare for ‘bleisure’ travellers accompanied by their families while away on business trips

Hospitality specialists are offering accommodation that looks and feels like home in order to meet the needs of growing customer demographic

PUBLISHED : Friday, 04 November, 2016, 10:56am
UPDATED : Friday, 04 November, 2016, 12:58pm

Travellers, combining business trips with leisure time, have coined a new word. “Bleisure” is the buzzword for factoring enjoyment into a work assignment, which increasingly for millennials means bringing the family with you.

According to a survey by BridgeStreet Global Hospitality, almost 55 per cent of bleisure travellers are accompanied by spouses and children, and of the remainder, 29 per cent said that they planned similar arrangements. To capture this growing customer demographic, serviced apartment operators are becoming family-friendly.

Lanson Place Hotel, Hong Kong, recognises this trend by installing kitchenettes in all of its 194 rooms, and the penthouse suite serviced apartments. A self-service launderette is thoughtfully provided, and guest gathering places – the elegant 133 Lounge and library – have the convivial feel of a home living room. You won’t feel hemmed in once inside, either: the two-bedroom apartments in the Causeway Bay property are generously sized at 1,900 sq ft.

Rooms and communal areas at Tsuen Wan property Bay Bridge Hong Kong by Hotel G are equipped with facilities aimed at families, and are suitable for both long and short stays.

“Our one bedroom with sea view and one bedroom with terrace apartment sizes start from 800 sq ft, which is a comfortable amount of space for a family of three or four people,” says Marc Bichet, chief marketing officer of GCP Hospitality.

“The rooms are divided into a kitchen area, living room, bedroom and one bathroom. The hotel also offers amenities such as hairdryers, bathroom amenities, electrical stove and a microwave, dining crockery and laundry service. We find that having this option for easy in-room meal preparation, as well as a reliable laundry service, is essential for families, especially with younger children.”

Taking care of a family group’s transportation needs, a complimentary shuttle service is provided to/from Hong Kong International Airport, as well as service to the nearest MTR station every 30 minutes. “This means that guests do not have to struggle to find multiple taxis to transport their families around town,” Bichet says.

The safety, security and privacy provided represent another major factor as well as the vicinity of major international schools
Ronald Loges, general manager, Gateway Apartments

Anchor’s Seafood & Beer House is designed to be a family-friendly restaurant (including a children’s menu), and from May to October, the outdoor swimming pool and Jacuzzi are open for children as well as parents to enjoy.

“We understand the importance for everyone to stay connected, so complimentary high speed Wi-fi is offered throughout the property,” Bichet says.

And to make family escapes fun and memorable, Bay Bridge Hong Kong by Hotel G has partnered with Disneyland Hong Kong to offer a room package that includes tickets to the theme park.

At Gateway Apartments on top of Harbour City in Tsim Sha Tsui, just over 40 per cent of the apartments are occupied by families with children. According to Ronald Loges, the property’s general manager, Gateway Apartments are attractive to families “for multiple reasons”.

“Foremost, our apartment sizes are amongst the most spacious in Hong Kong with configurations that suit any family size,” he says. “In addition, we will redecorate the bedroom into a kid’s room with kids’ furniture to make them feel special and at home.

“The safety, security and privacy provided represent another major factor as well as the vicinity of major international schools, all of which provide pick-up and drop-off at Harbour City. Add to that the unrivalled view across Victoria Harbour onto Hong Kong Island, with residence services that are the envy of any five-star hotel, and it becomes evident why Gateway Apartments are the residence of choice for families.”

Children’s facilities and activities provided by the Pacific Club, to which residents enjoy privileged access, are another key attraction for parents, Loges says. “Kids’ menus are available at all restaurants as well as the catering for special dietary requirements. Children’s activities in a wide variety, especially sport-related, are extremely popular as we provide professional coaching from the very young onwards. Our large, multilevel children’s playroom area with professional supervision allows parents to drop off their kids and pursue their own interest, knowing that their children are well taken care of.”