Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Staying With Local Heroes

It’s a global village out there. Whether in New York or Mumbai, London or Bangkok, people are being exposed to the same news, music, movies, and products regardless of geography. Brands no longer think about reaching the 1000 mile radius. They aspire to be world famous.

Our increasingly globalize culture has sparked a counter change in behavior. People who travel further and explore more of the world are choosing local, unique experiences over the Hiltons and Big Macs. They shop at street markets, enjoy food at local restaurants and stay at independently run hotels.

This is a win-win. Local hotels are pushing back against standardized accommodation by becoming hyperlocal – making the destination a point of differentiation. Travelers get a more authentic experience of the areas they visit while supporting local businesses. Interest in local culture leads to appreciation which leads to celebration. Why travel half-way around the world to eat a meal you could get around the corner? Why sleep in a bedroom that makes you feel like you could be anywhere?

There are many local hotels that grow their own food and promote regional industry. If you happen to stay at the MONA Pavilions in Hobart, Australia, they have a vineyard o- site. At Ceylon Tea Trails in Sri Lanka, they use locally grown tea in just about anything. If you happen to be on the West Coast (USA), visit Shutters on the Beach. It's in the vicinity of LAX and Disneyland, but you would never know it. The Cape Cod inspired beach house of a hotel is right on the sands of Santa Monica and epitomizes the laidback lifestyle that is California. A beautiful getaway. Great service with a touch of old Hollywood glamour.

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