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In-Room Dining - Is It Still a Thing?

Updated: Jan 25

The thought of having a tray full of delectable food and drinks brought straight from the kitchen to your room to enjoy anytime time of the day is the kind of comfort and luxury that In-room dining is all about. This service has been around for centuries however, because of the ever-so changing times the art has had to be adapted and changed to fit the wants of the guests.

The Covid-19 pandemic really changed the way service is done and in-room dining became almost the only option for many establishments for a while. However, with the evolution of in-room service new trends have been created to combat the recent world events and give the luxury service a leg up.

Over the years room service has consisted of basic menu items you can get at local fast-food restaurants. The luxury service industry is trying to flip it back to what it used to be which was solely for luxury purposes. Whether that includes better, and more intricate menu items offered anytime of the day, having the guest become their very own bartender in the comfort of their room, bringing the bar directly to the guest’s room, or even if you are tired of being physically in your room one hotel offers an on-demand picnic that will be served to you on the hotel’s grounds.

When looking at in room dining menu selections, you can find an array of items including everything from the basic burger to a luxury sushi display on ice. The luxury hotel industry is coming up with ways to bring the most extravagant food that you would be receiving at the dinner table to your room.

At the “Nobu Hotel” at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, guests can order a luxury breakfast consisting of Green Tea Waffles which can be followed by Wagyu Beek Tacos for lunch or dinner later in the day which is leaps and bounds above receiving a burger and fries. Also, in Las Vegas at the “Bellagio” guests can order “Seafood on Ice” brought to their room. If that doesn’t say luxury, I don’t know what does. Even something as simple as ordering a “ski” desert board with a bottle of prosecco from the “JW Marriott Chicago” to be brought to you is something that can be taken for granted.

When many people think of in-room service they immediately think of food and dessert, however one way luxury hotels are standing out to guests is by having the downstairs bar traveling to you to your room. At Rhode Island’s “Ocean House” beach hotel they came up with bringing a cocktail cart that rolls down the line of rooms from 5pm-7pm and offers not only cocktails mixed at your doorway but also hors d'œuvres that include bites of smoked salmon.

Another way luxury hotels are bringing bar experiences to your room is by partnering with alcohol companies to create elixirs that are available anytime and are a standard amenity in your room mini bar. At the Aparium Hotel Group’s “Iron Horse” in Milwaukee they partnered with Milwaukee’s “Bittercube Bitters” to provide non-alcoholic elixirs. That way the guest can make their own old-fashions and gimlets from the comfort of their room almost like a luxury DIY drink service.

Sometimes spending too much time in a hotel room can make guests go stir crazy which is a problem that the “Weekapaug Inn” in Milwaukee recognizes, and they have come up with an in-genius way to help. They offer an “on-demand” picnic that offer’s family style meals such as pasta dishes, charcuterie cheese boards, and braised short ribs. The best part of this service is that the guest can pick where on the hotel grounds they would like their picnic to be set up. Anywhere from on the lawn to a beach cabana, all the guest does is show up at the time they requested, and the meal is set up and ready to be enjoyed.

The recent world events have helped the luxury hotel industry to find and push to search for new ideas and trends to elevate their services. In-room dining is just one example of this however, it is something that was brought to light in the past year as being a great amenity. Could in-room dining continue on this path of gaining popularity? Or could it just be a phase because of the condition of the world?


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