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Definition: hotel from Collins English Dictionary


1 a commercially run establishment providing lodging and usually meals for guests, and often containing a public bar

[C17: from French hôtel, from Old French hostel; see hostel]

Summary Article: Hotel
From The Encyclopedia of Sustainable Tourism

A building used for accommodation purposes for business or leisure travellers. Depending on their size, hotels also usually offer a range of facilities and services including: food and beverage outlets (some may also provide room service); conference and event facilities; leisure, health and fitness facilities including swimming pools, gyms and spas; concierge services for tour bookings; and business services including computer access, printing and services for sending and receiving facsimiles. Hotels are often classified through grading systems. Some suggest that hotel grading and classification systems are responsible for causing confusion not only for guests, but also for the industry (Cooper et al., 2008; Cser and Ohuchi, 2008). Inconsistencies and variances both domestically and internationally among grading schemes are responsible for varying degrees of (dis)satisfaction where such grading schemes can also be seen as responsible for providing an expectation of not only the level of quality to be provided, but also of the level of hospitality, or type of experience (Ariffin and Maghzi, 2012). In the context of sustainable tourism, grading and classification schemes often take the form of ecolabels. Often, such schemes are lambasted around issues of trust, reliability and authenticity. Buckley (2001a) points out however that the amount of weight consumers will place on ecolabels are influenced firstly by how much the consumer cares about the environment, and secondly how realistic the differences are between labelled and unlabelled products and services. The proliferation of ecolabels and certification schemes has led to confusion among consumers and tourism operators over the past decade (Font and Buckley, 2001) and when such labels are added to other hotel grading and classification schemes such confusion is only magnified. Hotel chains have instigated a number of initiatives in this area. Bohdanowicz and Zientara (2008) review the significant place of corporate social responsibility in top hotel chains operations in Europe, and suggest that the entire sector can in fact be held up as a model of responsible behaviour. Low (2013), however, notes the need for greater guidance and engagement from policy makers in developing legislative frameworks that support the efforts of hoteliers towards sustainable development, rather than simply pandering to the requirements of property developers and politicians.

Tiffany Low
© CAB International 2015

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