Friday, July 24, 2009

Motel 360

The culture of motel verse hotel. Two profoundly similar words, yet two vastly different destinations. Until now.

If you asked me yesterday what I associate with Motel 6, I may have said: blue and red, Cheez-It carpet stains, or crusty bed sheets. Anything besides Priestman Goode, a design firm that found a job where they could do no wrong. Taking Motel 6 and filling the rooms with Ikea looking decor.

My question is, what took Motel 6 so long? Did they just start employing brand managers? Did they start to realize fast food chains have started improving the "in-store" experience and image before them? Yet, they could be the first in the motel category to catch on. Finally, making the motel a value stay.

It reminds me of my unforgettable Super 8 motel experience. Optimistic to come across a Holiday Inn Express with low fuel and heavy eyes, I was forced to settle for the 8 that is super in Ghost Town, Ohio. To make a short story shorter, I slept on the smokey sheets with my jeans stills on. Listening to the Van Reaper sharpen his blade in the room above me.

Motels have the advantage of cheaper rates and roadside real-estate. Accommodating to the savings conscious traveler and those that can't find a hotel due to a faulty Garmin. Renovations to give the motel a clean, modern look, is the keychain to the keys in beginning to change the brand perception. Starting a trend for motels to follow in future hopes to be found in the same consideration set as the hotel.