Your Checklist to Hospitality Investment Attraction

May 23, 2024
Three business people meeting about hospitality investment attraction in a hotel lobby over breakfast.

A destination looking to grow can’t do it alone, but attracting hospitality investment is a clear way forward. Having the new, fresh offerings will not only provide newsworthy content for destinations to land headlines in the press, but it will provide travelers with even more incentive to book a trip.

As a DMO researches its local industry and identifies needs—new accommodations, for example—it can begin thinking about where to look and how to approach investors. There’s no science to it, but understanding the fundamentals will be essential to creating an effective strategy.

This checklist serves as a framework to get started.

1. Define Objectives

Any hospitality attraction plan requires a clear and realistic set of objectives. Destinations seeking hospitality investment need to be upfront about what those investments look like and how they will benefit the local community. 

Beyond just defining the objectives, it’s crucial to set a plan to identify how your destination organization and local partners will work together to achieve them. Understanding the process you will be undertaking and formalizing is key to ensuring you are setting yourself up for success.

2. Involve Local Partners

The clearest goals and the best plans require cooperation to follow through on them. Destinations looking for new hospitality investment need to be sure that all local partners are involved in the process.

Hold a meeting, ask for input, send out a survey—do whatever it takes. Hospitality investment is a big endeavor, and without the support and insight from your local partners, your destination organization lacks a crucial element to achieving your goals. Be sure to include the local community, as well, to make sure your DMOs propositions are in line with their needs.

3. Enlist Consultants

All of the local insight in your community may not be enough to enact change and attract hotels and other hospitality companies to your destination. It’s important to consider working with outside consultants who know the industry and who can advise on best practices when trying to lure in investors.

Revisit your goals and plan out each step with consultants to help streamline your process. A little financial investment in the process may save a lot of time and needless effort later. Plus, the added intel from an outside advisor can open your hospitality investment attraction up to new possibilities you never imagined.

4. Gift Yourself Time

Destinations want results fast, but building a new hotel or attracting a new cruise company to your port won’t happen overnight. It’s important to give your destination organization time to work through the many layers of the process, and to work through them correctly.

Hospitality investment requires a lot of people and decision makers, so prepare for a marathon even if you’d prefer a quick sprint.

5. Network with Decision Makers

With goals set, your destination knows the types of investors you’re seeking, so attend the hospitality events and trade shows where you can connect with them. Find the hotel industry leaders, the architects, and anyone else who can help drive investment to your destination and get in front of them.

Speak at the events they attend and participate in the conferences they headline—do whatever it takes to network more organically. Moreover, recognize that the decision makers will be not just one group or entity. There is a lot of networking in different directions to securing hospitality investment, from leaders at big hospitality brands to local policy makers, so don’t lose sight of the big picture.

Above all, plan for new long-term relationships with hospitality brands and, of course, plenty of hard work. Hospitality investment attraction is a vital component to ensuring your destination organization is maximizing its potential and serving your community in the process. 

For destinations setting out to attract new hospitality investment, the road will be long. DCI has more than 60 years of experience to help you along the way. Reach out to Siobhan Chrétien at [email protected] to learn more about partnering with DCI’s hospitality attraction team.

Written by

Siobhan Chretien

Senior Director