The New Guy in Town: Four Points by Sheraton Shanghai Hongqiao
To Meet a New "Friend"
As a sister brand of Sheraton, Four Points by Sheraton is recognized as a traditional full-service hotel in my experience. Bright lobby, modest decoration, several restaurants with different cuisines, and various meeting rooms of different sizes. It will not give you surprises, but it will not let you down.
As this visit was about to arrive, the bright fluorescent signs and "Beer" hanging outside the hotel immediately attracted my attention. When I stepped into the hotel lobby, the rhythmic music made me realize that this is a new “friend”.
The Mesh Food and Beer
The all-day dining restaurant "The Mesh Food" is located on the first floor of the hotel and provides guests with traditional local breakfast. For non-local guests, it is indeed a way to enjoy local food without going out.
And "The Mesh Beer" is a social sharing space specially created by the hotel. Guests can choose to check in here. It also provides afternoon tea, drinks and a live band at night. Everyone has enough space to enjoy their time. Meanwhile, the coffee drinks here are produced in cooperation with Starbucks to ensure that business travellers can easily buy a cup of coffee they are familiar with when they rush out in the morning.
Social space is a bonus item favored by more and more hotels, and it is getting more popular among the guests. The upgraded version of Four Points has grasped the market trend and made people see its intention to change.
Vintage Industrial Style
The total room area at the hotel is about 35 square meters which is not really spacious, but a closer inspection reveals that many details are worth exploring. The floor area of the guest room is divided into three different areas with marble, wooden floor and carpet. The seats and headboards are all made of leather, as well as the lines of furniture and facilities. The overall design is more youthful and energetic.
Comfort is perhaps the best summary of the experience of the entire room. Although it was my first experience, it felt kind of natural, as if I had been here a long time ago.
For frequent travellers, it may be a little bothersome. When you walk into the new Four Points with your established impression, you may have the illusion of Moxy because of the red lip painting on the wall or the music style, but when you turn your head, you may be misled by the comfortable sense of space in the hotel and think that you are here in Fairfield. At a new Four Points, you can notice many changes in elements, such as space, design, and concept, as well as the intention of each point. However, the overall feeling is a bit embarrassing, since you cannot figure out the personality of this hotel clearly by these characteristics.
Yet for me, these elementary designs make people feel at ease. Each hotel brand has its target customer group and point. And this new "friend" just stepped on my "point" in these details.
Four Points 3.0
Comparing this new version of Four Points by Sheraton 3.0 with the old one, we can spot certain changes in many aspects.
The old version of Four Points is positioned as a four-star business hotel. The decoration is quite satisfactory, without a special personality or style. The new version can adjust the functional layout more flexibly, and the design is more in line with the preferences of young customers.
Number of restaurants
The old version of Four Points usually has 2-3 restaurants and bars. The new version 3.0 only sets up an all-day dining restaurant, which includes a bar, lobby bar, and a shared space. At the same time, the mini bar in standard guest rooms has also been cancelled. This has resulted in a relatively lower investment in catering.
The old version of Four Points is usually equipped with a banquet hall or a multi-function hall for medium-sized banquets, while the new version 3.0 only has three small meeting rooms, the largest of which can accommodate 40 people.
As a full-service four-star hotel, the old version of Four Points generally had a staff-to-room ratio of 0.7-1.0; the new version reduces the catering facilities, and its ratio can be controlled at about 0.4.
The development of the Four Points brand also reflects a trend of contemporary brand renewal. In an environment where consumer experience demands are escalating, operating costs are rising, and competition is becoming increasingly fierce, the maintenance and enhancement of the brand's influence is essential for injecting fresh blood into the brand and for it to continue to move forward.
Four Points 3.0 subversively adjusts the usual elements and facilities, which will not be a rare behavior in the hospitality industry. I’m looking forward to seeing more "3.0" brand projects in coming years.