There are many tiers of service and amenities in the hospitality industry. Comparing different lodging options isn’t always clear, as the terms each company uses will differ, as will the level of service. With that said, there are some generalities which apply under most circumstances. Here’s a list of a few types of accommodations and how they differ from one another.
Bed and Breakfast
Typically, a bed and breakfast is a large, single-family home subdivided with guestrooms. They’re often called B&Bs for short and the homeowners are the hosts. They can sometimes be on the more modest end of the spectrum of accommodations, though operators work to make guests feel like they’re at home. There isn’t a standard list of amenities, as each one is usually independently owned and operated. As the name indicates, breakfast should be included at the very least. These are a great option for travelers who want unique charm, and a chance to chat with a local host for some inside perspective on the area.
Boutique hotels are booming in popularity across the US in prime destinations. Much of the time, they will have a specific theme, like the Library Hotel in New York organized by the Dewey decimal theme, as well as another which has designs inspired by Aspen, and feels much like a posh lodge in the heart of the city. In addition to themes, boutiques are generally on the upper tier of options with chic décor and custom amenities. The boutique hotel generally trades in the ‘experience’ of the stay, giving guests a memorable experience.
Executive Stay Hotel
The accommodations offered by booking for the day services like HotelsByDay are often executive stay hotels, matching the fast paced nature of business travel with premium services and comfortable rooms. Executive stay hotels generally provide an elite class of service, as well as superior design. Much of the time, the amenities will focus on business travelers and their specific needs for resources in mind. These hotels often have printing and copying service, business centers, meeting space equipped with audio-visual equipment for presentations, and other necessary tools for guests to work on the go.
The term “luxury” can be applied to any type of lodging, provided it has specific amenities and services. Forbes rated several luxury boutiques and luxury resorts in a recent column. However, in order to gain four or five stars and qualify for luxury status, the establishments truly had to stand out in one way or another. In one case, guests were given a phone upon check-in which provided them with instant access to a butler. A couple of resorts made to the top-list because guests received star-treatment. One resort provided guests with a personal shuttle to avoid ski lifts. When in doubt, check Yelp and other rating sites to read reviews from previous travelers.
USA Today does an excellent job of explaining the architectural differences between a hotel and motel. They’re generally more budget friendly than hotels in most cases. While they provide lodging, and perhaps a few amenities like a pool, the quality can be lacking.
While hotels and motels provide accommodations near attractions, resorts are the attraction. They’re designed with entertainment venues as part of their establishment, so that the entire vacation occurs on-site. This is commonly the case with ski resorts and casinos, as they have lodging, gaming, golf courses, and entertainment all within a single complex.
Because the hospitality industry has no standard naming-protocol, these terms may vary. To ensure you’re getting exactly what you expect when you book, you’ll have to do your homework and check reviews and ratings. If you book through a reputable agency, they’ll vet the establishments to ensure they’re held to strict quality standards.