One of my favorite topics to write about is pets, especially how people are pampering their little friends. “Humanization” is a new market trend that is emerging where people want to travel extensively with their pets. As a result, more hotels are becoming pet friendly complete with “Yappy Hours.”
According to a 2012 survey by the American Hotel & Lodging Association 61 percent of all properties permit pets compared to 52 percent in 2010. Consequently, pet friendly properties are rolling out their red carpets, especially for dogs. In addition to pet sitting, some hotels are offering special branded (e.g., Ritz Carlton) doggy beds, special room service menus, “pet-icures” and even doggy reiki as a marketing ploy.
The hotel chain that is leading the pack is Kimpton. They report that approximately 100,000 pets stayed at their hotels (60) last year; 99 percent were dogs. At their NYC location, the Muse, four legged guests receive an amenity bag consisting of several items; a water bowl, organic treats and a squeaky toy to name a few. Some of their properties offer a daily complimentary wine hour known as the “Yappy Hour” where dog owners (a.k.a. guests) and their furry friends can mingle. Their grand “Yappy Hour” is their annual October Howl-o-Ween party held at the Argonaut Hotel in San Francisco where they award numerous Halloween costume prizes with one stipulation: all dogs must be leashed and friendly toward other dogs, children and people of all ages.
Make your dog yappy!