Driven by the need for hoteliers to maximize revenue more than ever in the wake of reduced demand, as well as a growing consumer preference for customization, HotelsByDay continues to accelerate its growth and broaden its presence throughout the U.S.
The HotelsByDay website and app lets guests reserve unused hotel rooms at select properties during the day and offers consumers the ability to take advantage of a host of amenities—such as the use of pools and spas, fitness facilities and work spaces—via a single platform. The New York-based company was founded in 2015 by CEO Yannis Moati based on a model he saw in Europe, which had more of a romantic bend to it. Moati reinvented that model for the U.S. with an emphasis on business and convenience.
Moati—who was previously a travel agent—touted the value of the platform for hotel owners.
“Essentially HotelsByDay is becoming an operator that helps hotels make the most of their real estate. Being confined to only night stays in today’s economy and in today’s reality with the optimization of everything does not make sense,” he said, adding that even when a hotel is fully occupied “you’ve got essentially 40 percent of your hotel sitting empty all day long.”
The CEO further elaborated on the potential benefits for hoteliers.
“The ones that do use it are lifting their revenues, but also gaining extra customers because the day-time customer is essentially a mirror image of a night-stay customer,” he said, pointing out that hotels that use the platform are likely to attract more local customers and generate repeat business.
Moati detailed what is driving the demand for day use and specialization within hotels.
“This is led by the consumer that is accustomed now and being trained by the Amazons of this world to purchasing everything on demand, a-la-carte, service by service. They’re breaking down everything according to the customization,” he said.
The HotelsByDay platform is now offered by some 2,000 hotels, according to Moati, who further asserted the company expects to add a “major pipeline of properties” in 2022. He acknowledged the day-use concept for hotels has gained momentum at least in part as a result of the pandemic.
“COVID has accelerated our model because everybody realizes that business as usual can not continue as before,” he said.
Moati went on to detail the expansion of services and evolution of the company, which included the 2019 acquisition of DayAxe, a company that sold access to hotel amenities such as pool passes, cabanas, spas and fitness rooms.
“We started with just solely layovers giving people a few hours to rest, shower and change type of thing, and it ended up growing. That’s where the a-la-carte pricing model eventually came into full swing,” he said.
The services eventually expanded to include conference rooms, parking spaces, cabanas, gym passes, and co-working desks, among other amenities. The company also launched a sister platform known as FlexBook, a website and app providing custom booking with early check-in/late check-out options for overnight stays.
Moati underscored the unlimited potential of the day-use concept.
“Our vision for the future resides in having an app that gives you flexible real estate. We think a hotel is a perfect setup for it because it comes with a level of service that is unmatched, but essentially it can go much wider than that,” he said.