For wooing back travelers with hotels that lean into the local vibe
Amid a hotel industry reset, Jenna Hackett is out to make travelers feel like they’re part of whatever community they’re visiting. As global brand head for Hilton Hotels’ newer collections—Curio, a high-end portfolio of properties, and Tapestry, which skirts the line between luxury and value—Hackett achieves this by immersing visitors in the distinct culture of their locations.
Tapestry’s Le Belgrand Hotel near Paris’ Champs-Élysées, for example, displays original artwork curated from French artists in all rooms and public areas. Curio’s Baker’s Cay Resort on the U.S. resort island of Key Largo serves up seafood caught directly from the surrounding ocean as part of its “dock to dish” program.
To scale such posh visions, Hackett relies on collaboration. For each hotel, she works with a team of developers and site owners to imagine an experience that captures the location’s spirit with authenticity. The approach is also designed to ensure each project aligns with Hilton’s broader organizational priorities to deliver positive social impact. For the #LeadASAP Spark the Arts project, the Tapestry group partnered with the nonprofit Youth Service America to improve neighborhoods around hotel locations.
Not even COVID-19 could slow Hackett. When plans for six new hotel projects were put on hold in 2020, Hackett pivoted to help owners at existing sites adapt their space to comply with new health and safety guidelines, including Hilton’s CleanStay program.
Now Hackett is back in launch mode, rolling out Hilton’s first Tapestry property in Asia Pacific: the Hotel Resonance Taipei in Taiwan, which opened in December 2020. She’s paving the way for owners to engage with local artists to create pop-up events and workshops to provide visitors with a view of the local art scene.
“Our hotels aim to inspire travelers to get out and enjoy a local experience beyond their four walls,” Hackett said. “I am confident that the unique design and prime location in Taipei’s cultural hub will enable our guests to do just that.”