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Let’s Get Physical: Millennials Place Fitness Center High on Hotel Priority List

The millennial generation are sometimes thought of as a finicky bunch that’s hard to please. There are, however, a few known factors that will likely help guide businesses in their efforts to win over that demographic.

Last year, a Harris poll showed that 72 percent of millennials place a higher value on experiences than physical gifts. Given this — along with the fact that smart devices are increasing instant gratification — it’s no surprise that millennials seek experiences that will also make the most efficient use of their time.

When millennials are seeking those experiences, hotel visits are naturally the next focal point during traveling. When planning out trips around the world, millennials are seeking top-of-the-line fitness centers inside hotel facilities. Research from travel and hospitality firm MMGY Global shows 50 percent of millennials say the access to fitness classes is a high priority when it comes to hotel selection. As such, hotel chains will likely start using quality in-hotel fitness centers as a key promotional tool to help attract the up-and-coming young adult generation.

Reinforcing this tactic is research from The American Hotel and Lodging Association, which showed that 85 percent of hotel have gyms — an increase from 63 percent in 2004. Hotels are even sometimes referring to General Managers as Chief Wellness Officers that help guide guests with city activities.

American Express Travel’s EVP for travel and lifestyle experiences told the New York Times about the many options hotels are now offering to help attract the key demographic of millennials and said, “Major hotels are realizing that putting fitness first matters to this demographic a lot, and that they need to have options so working out doesn’t feel like a chore. And if they can incur something unique to the location, that’s sort of a nice balance. The days of the old treadmill in the basement, that’s not really the strategy anymore.”

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