The boutique hotel sector in Lebanon is showing signs of slow growth, with the small number of participants in this niche market performing particularly well and displaying signs of optimism for future potential in the market as a whole.

A boutique hotel, according to the head of Lebanon’s Hotel Syndicate Pierre Achkar, is often quite small and usually consists of between 40 to 60 rooms.

“A boutique hotel is one that offers something special to its guests, its concept and look depending on where the hotel is located. Boutique hotels are characterized by their different room designs and sizes to guarantee that guests will never have the same experience twice,” Achkar said.

Achkar noted how boutique hotels offered the highest quality in all areas, including room service, food, amenities and multi-lingual staff.

“Inevitably therefore, these hotels often come with a very high-price tag,” he said.

Achkar informed that there was a high demand for rooms in boutique hotels mainly because Lebanon is still characterized by individual tourism rather than group-based tourism.

“Nevertheless, despite this high demand for rooms in boutique hotels, the majority of tourists to Lebanon are still preferring to choose the luxury-chain hotels because these are still the most well known. Since boutique hotels are often small and not overly exposed, many tourists still do not know about them,” Achkar said.

Achkar noted that although there was undoubtedly potential for the growth of the boutique hotel sector in Lebanon, a ceiling existed on individual-based tourism, citing the need for more 4-star hotels to accommodate for groups.

“Boutique hotels that are not excessively priced can attract wealthy groups from Europe and the Middle East. These [4-star] hotels are springing up outside Beirut since occupancy rates in the capital are usually above 75 percent on average during the summer months so are no longer able to accommodate large groups.”
Source: The Daily Star