May 3rd- 5th marks the annual Hospitality Design 2017 Expo & Conference in Vegas, and is the perfect venue to experience all that Vegas has to offer – and what has changed over the years.

If four million Americans all decided to stay in their own hotel room on any given night, there would be plenty of room for everyone at US-based hotels. The hospitality industry is a massive one, commanding $550 billion dollars worldwide from travelers in 2016 alone. And the overall expenditures on both sides of the equation are equally staggering.

Hotels spend incredible sums of money on a variety of things, and inject billions into the world economy as they work alongside vendors and service providers to keep their properties humming. The IRS noted that Marriott spent $190 million just to replace old bedding at its properties recently, and spends $20 million a year on skin-care products for its hotel rooms. With the hospitality industry, as a whole, generating nearly as much revenue as the GDP of Finland, Sweden, and Norway combined, it certainly attracts a lot of attention. And no gathering of hospitality industry trends stands out quite like the Hospitality Design Expo & Conference – held this year in Las Vegas.

What to Expect This Year

The HD Expo has been going strong since 1992, and over the past 25 years it has gained serious momentum as the premier trade show for the hospitality industry. The goal of the show is to:

*Connect industry professionals who can collaborate and turn current challenges and opportunities into real-world solutions.

* Expose up-and-coming designers to key industry decision-makers who can boost the visibility of emerging technologists and artists.

* Offer LU/CEU accredited courses that not only deliver leading-edge industry information, but can also grant educational credits for life-long learners in the field.

* Showcase leaders in the hospitality field who can discuss the ins and outs of managing and growing a successful brand.

The 2017 HD Expo is estimated to pull an expected 17,500 attendees and is a great opportunity for anyone involved in the hospitality field to learn more about the contemporary world of hotels and their related services. Las Vegas is the perfect venue for this type of exposition, as it embodies a true spirit of adaptability that has literally reshaped the skyline over the past 20 years.

Las Vegas has demonstrated how service and the client experience has had to change to keep up with changing tastes, how design features that were once considered unrealistic or even unattainable are now in demand, and how technology has reshaped the way hospitality industry firms do business.

Think about it – for the 40 million or so annual visitors to Las Vegas, how many of them booked their room via an online booking system? Or downloaded the app to enable easier management of their resort stay? Did social media influence their decision? Statistics say that social media is one of the biggest influencers when it comes to making a hotel stay decision. Wi-Fi infrastructure overhauls are another big push. It isn’t acceptable anymore for a hotel guest to not have robust and reliable Wi-Fi on the hotel property. Even SMART room keys, which allow guests to unlock their room doors with a swipe of their smartphone, are quickly replacing the old “credit card-style” room keys. These innovations, and more, will be showcased and discussed at the 2017 HD Expo in Las Vegas.

One of the biggest changes seen in hospitality industry trends in Vegas is a move away from hotels with a “gambler’s Mecca” theme to one of an all-immersive resort experience. Tahiti Village, for example, lies just minutes away from the gaming tables of the Strip, yet pampers guests with an all-encompassing Island theme – perfect for escaping the noise and hustle of the Las Vegas’ Strip. A resort like Tahiti Village is one example of the “New Vegas” – a far cry from the stale, smoke-filled card rooms of yesteryear.

Come check out the HD Expo this year for yourself, or simply book a room in Vegas to see firsthand what hospitality looks like – Vegas-style.