This article outlines the breadth of the serviced apartment sector, the difference between operators and agents, between serviced apartments, aparthotels, ‘condotels’, ‘corporate housing’, and extended-stay properties.

It quotes ASAP’s marketing and media manager Joyce Cawthorpe, discussing the need for an educational piece as to what a serviced apartment actually is, and the importance of the ASAP Quality Accreditation Programme which will become a pre-condition of membership, hopefully by 1 September this year.

Joyce states that the rise of Airbnb as a disruptor to the traditional hotel stay has had a positive effect on the serviced apartment industry, by introducing the consumer to the concept of alternative accommodations, with serviced apartments being seen as the respectable arm of the industry. The view is shared by commentators from Bridgestreet, Native, Ascott, TAS Global, SilverDoor Citybase and Oakwood Worldwide.

Travel managers are increasingly looking for serviced apartments and aparthotels for travellers, and if larger hotel groups are moving into this space, it shows how attractive the serviced apartment sector is.

There are also views from the travel manager’s perspective, and how serviced apartments off flexibility for longer business trips, bleisure and group travel.

The article concludes with the ASAP-commissioned Savills Operator Sentiment Tracker Survey published late last year, showing 47.7% of those in the industry questioned were more positive about business than they had been six months previously, and nearly two-thirds expected 2018 overall to be better than the year before.

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