Caption By Hyatt: New Select Service Lifestyle Brand

Filed Under: Hyatt

Hyatt has just revealed the details of its newest brand, Caption by Hyatt, which will be their 20th brand.

What Is Caption By Hyatt?

Caption by Hyatt is Hyatt’s newest lifestyle brand, within the select service category. Hyatt describes this as being a brand that “will bring people closer together, allowing them to work, eat or socialize in comfortable, flexible, communal spaces that encourage meaningful conversations and connections.”

Alrighty then…

As of now, Hyatt hasn’t actually announced where the first property will be located, so it sounds like they’ve come up with the concept, and are now looking for companies that want to invest in it.

As Hyatt’s Global Head of Development, Jim Chu, describes the brand:

“We intend for the Caption by Hyatt brand to be a global growth driver domestically and internationally in dense urban markets, emerging neighborhoods and high foot traffic areas. We believe the brand is primed for strong growth as it can flex and adapt to suit the needs of different locations and markets and can offer a more sustainable approach to design and operations.”

Meanwhile here’s how Hyatt’s VP of Global Brands, Heather Geisler, describes the brand:

“At Hyatt, we believe in the power of personal connection. By listening to our guests, we know that whether they are traveling alone or with a friend, they are looking to connect with others in an environment that is authentic and approachable. The Caption by Hyatt brand will invite guests and locals alike to hang out, enjoy a cocktail and catch up with a friend, new or old, in a space that is intended for them.”

Core Promises Of Caption By Hyatt

Caption by Hyatt will focus on three core promises:

  • Alluring and approachable spaces. Caption by Hyatt hotels will invite guests in with cozy rooms and common areas that are flexible enough to move things around and make the space uniquely theirs. Social spaces will be richly designed and unexpectedly put together – sparking conversation and giving guests and locals alike no choice but to stay awhile.
  • Conversation-worthy food and beverage. Eating and drinking at Caption by Hyatt hotels will be about more than what’s on the table. They will bring people together to enjoy the locale’s dynamic culture.
  • Experiences that don’t begin or end at the hotel’s front door. Whether guests try something new or meet someone new, Caption by Hyatt hotels will create the conditions for connections that matter – all-day drinks and sharable snacks; spaces designed for guests to plug in anywhere; flexible and multi-purpose spaces for lounging and small events; and a rotating calendar of do-it-yourself and hosted events from trunk shows to local beer tastings.

Expect “Cozy” Rooms

Hyatt emphasizes the communal areas of Caption by Hyatt, though doesn’t talk much about rooms. They do refer to them as “cozy,” and after doing some digging, it appears we can expect some small rooms.

Their brochure to potential investors indicate the hotels will have 150-250 rooms, and they’ll be just 220 to 270 square feet.

Why Hotel Groups Create New Hotel Brands

Before I share my thoughts on this new brand, I think it’s worth talking about why hotel groups launch new brands. It’s not necessarily to be able to sell to consumers, but rather to be able to sell to investment companies.

For the most part, the global hotel chains don’t actually own most of their hotels, but rather they just have management or franchise contracts for them. So the reason they create so many new brands is so they have something to pitch to investors.

They try to make each brand seem super-unique, in hopes of luring a company to build a city’s first Caption by Hyatt, rather than a third Hyatt Place, for example.

That’s why there’s also such little innovation when it comes to new hotel brands. Instead, I feel like we just see each of the major hotel brands introduce similar concepts over and over.

My Take On Caption By Hyatt

To be honest, I roll my eyes just about every time one of the major global hotel groups launches a new brand. That’s because I find that there’s often such a disconnect between what they’re claiming to be creating and what it actually is.

Most of the major hotel groups have been launching brands focused on “authentic” and “local” experiences. If someone wants that in the way that the brands promise, they wouldn’t be staying with one of the world’s largest hotel brands.

That being said, as far as select service properties I kind of like this concept, I think? It sounds like this will be at a similar price point to Hyatt Place (based on it being select service), and based on that I definitely prefer the concept of a hotel with more inviting public spaces and a better food and beverage program.

I’d expect rooms that are much smaller than you’d find at Hyatt Place properties, but with nicer public areas.

Summary

Caption by Hyatt is a select service lifestyle brand that will also be Hyatt’s 20th brand concept. Do I think this will become the new hotspot for locals to eat & drink? Probably not. But when it comes to select service properties, this does sound more appealing to me than a Hyatt Place.

The big question is when the first property will open, given that the announcement doesn’t even mention any property being in the pipeline.

What do you make of Caption by Hyatt?

Comments
  1. Similar to Hyatt Place? How so? Wouldn’t this be similar to Hyatt Centric. Wait… isn’t this the SAME CONCEPT as Hyatt Centric. All companies making a world for millennials.

  2. Sounds like Hyatt’s version of aloft and Moxy to me but maybe a little nicer. Key terms “cozy rooms” and “common spaces”….which typically go hand in hand since no one wants to spend much time in a “cozy” room which is typically a box.

  3. That’s what millennials want. I have no idea why but they hang out in Starbucks all day drinking $4 coffees with 599 calories in them all day

  4. This is a hotel for rich Gen Zs, not Millenials. Millennials know better than to buy into these “concepts.”

    Also, “just” 220-270 sq ft? That’s not very small… and probably the only thing millennials would find attractive there.

  5. @Ryan

    I agree 100%. It’s exactly the Centric model, except possibly with smaller rooms…?

    The thought must be that in bigger cities with very expensive real estate, they can claim this new brand is upscale (beyond Hyatt House & Hyatt Place) but still have tiny rooms. The crazy thing is that in major European cities, Hyatt has just allowed hotels to do this already under the Centric & Hyatt brands.

  6. Agree with @Christian completely. I’m a frequent guest at the Aloft in Charleston due to its proximity to work and because it’s the only convenient Marriott. I consistently find myself working in the lobby not because I want to but because the room is small, dark, and not particularly inviting, plus the desk/chair combo (surprising that they have it at all – so kudos for that) is incredibly uncomfortable. The last thing I truly want to do is attempt to answer emails or actually work while the bar fills up with post-sightseeing tourist or post-meeting business folks who are looking to get liquored up. And no, locals are not venturing to Alofts (or Moxys or Captions) to partake in libations and mingle with out-of-towners. And I’m just on the edge of being a Millenial but technically am Gen X, but even the professional Millenials I work with roll their eyes at this odd stereotyping.

  7. Cracking up at all us millennials thinking the world still revolves around us and that brands are catering these new concepts to us. This is for Gen Z and Gen Z probably will like the concept.

  8. It sounds so much like they way they described Hyatt Centric when it was launched. The renderings look like a cheap version of Thompson rooms. Do we know if these will be new hotels or existing hotels converted or both? If it gives us an opportunity to get another free night through brand explorer, I am all for it.

  9. Well that load of crap from Hyatt just further proves I would be horrible in any career around marketing, pr, advertisting etc… I would not being able to keep a straight face with all the bs about meaningful conversations and connections.

    That said, it does seem similar to Centric but hopefully at a lower price point. Most place I’ve seen Centric, it’s a pretty significant increase over a nearby Hyatt Place or even some Regencys. I’m certainly not going to write off the brand until I try, but it will all come down to price and location. I don’t mind Alofts too much when I need a bed but don’t plan on spending a lot of time in the room. This will probably be similar to that.

  10. We stayed at a new Le Meridian in downtown Denver. Very small and tight room. But it was new and I liked it. They had the best rooftop bar with an amazing view. We spent most nights up there engaging with locals and tourists like us. If you have an attraction that brings in both locals and hotel guests it can work. However, business types aren’t necessarily going to like this. They need peace and quiet. I used to travel for work for 10 years, believe me, quiet is a godsend when traveling on the road.

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to participate in the discussion, please adhere to our commenting guidelines. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *