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Service design assignment: Analysis on the Case of Aloft Hotels


Prepare a service design assignment evaluating the use of service design and service-dominant logic in the delivery of service experiences by justifying the most effective characteristics of service-based industries and the service economy in Aloft Hotels.


Aloft Hotels is a part of Marriott International which is selected in the present context of service design assignment that has emerged as a popular brand for music makers and music lovers (Aloft, 2020a). It operates around 175 lifestyle hotels in more than 25 countries and territories all over the world. Aloft follows a “different by design” philosophy that mainly caters to the “always on” next generation travellers who emphasize on personality, colours and obsession for music (Marriott International, 2020). The brand is popular for its in-hotel social and lively atmosphere, where innovative music programming, emerging artists and other music events are provided with much importance through its global program of Live At Aloft Hotels.

Service Offering
Aloft Hotels provides open space with lively and high-spirited atmosphere. As per the investigation on service design assignment, it focuses on bringing people together in its fresh and vibrant spaces to deliver services based on updated technology and design that enhances the customers’ experiences and cater to their changing needs (Aloft, 2020b). Various services include Marriott Bonvoy app with member perks and features, fast and free Wifi, pool table and swimming in its hotels. Besides, the brand also has the W XYZ bar where guest can experience live acoustic music with signature cocktails. The Re:Fuel By Aloft program is a 24/7 one-stop shop where people can get fresh, favourable and fast snacks and bites options (Aloft, 2020b). This service described in the service design assignment has further been improved with technology by introducing portable breakfast pots and wraps. Furthermore, the Live at Aloft program arranges homecoming tours for music groups and provides a platform for unexpected music talents where artists perform live music of different genres (Aloft, 2020c).

Service Design- Double Diamond Model
The double diamond model is a strategic framework that maps the divergent and convergent stages of a design process by displaying the different ways of thinking of the designers (Ferreira, et al., 2015). The four phases of this model used herein service design assignment are discover, define, develop and deliver.

Discover- In this stage, Aloft identifies the needs and preferences of the travellers and guests of their hotels for gaining detailed insight about them. This involves exploring about current social trends, customer wants, novel technology and others for incorporating them in its services (Design Council, 2020). Thus, Aloft determines what services, food and drink, music festivals and facilities at the hotels the guests prefer with the help of user journey mapping, user shadowing, user diaries and others. Aloft first adopted this strategy by introducing ChatBoltr for receiving service requests from customers (HTN, 2017). This enables the brand to respond more effectively to guest needs.

Define- In this stage, Aloft analyzes the tastes and preferences of the guests, current trends in hotel services and the trending music genres for identifying the ones that would be best suitable for its customers and brand (Aloft, 2020b). Besides, the brand set clear objectives for addressing such needs through user persona, brainstorming and design briefs. This has enabled it to undertake significant brand initiatives by collaborating with MTV Asia, Live in the Vineyard music and others (Oates, 2014).

Develop- As discussed in the service design assignment, this involves developing the initial brief for introducing products or services through service blueprints, experience prototyping, business model canvas. With a wide range of services, Aloft has emerged as the service blueprint of mid-market hotel brands for responding to the millennial or Gen Y demands (Oates, 2014). Besides, Marriott build out prototypes for the infrastructure in Aloft hotels and gain feedback from hotel owners, investors and general public.

Deliver- This phase noted in the service design assignment involves launching products or services and gaining customer feedback for improving products or services. Thus, Aloft incorporates accessible technology and urban style in its hotel facilities (Verdict Media Limited, 2020). Its brand name is associated with style, social atmosphere, sensory experience and urban-influenced design. It gains customer feedback from various digital platforms.

Service-Dominant Logic- Value Co-Creation Mechanism
The concept of Service-Dominant logic mentioned in this section of service design assignment refers to a perspective that provides a new way of synthesizing and articulating alternative exchange of views and creating value in the markets (Lusch and Nambisan, 2015). In other words, it is based on the value creating opportunity for both customers and service providers who can co-create value together. This indicates that both the guests and service providers at Aloft jointly interact with each other to understand customer preferences and accordingly, provide products and services. Service ecosystems indicate the various external factors like economic changes, social trends, trending music, current hotel facilities of competitors and others that affect the services of Aloft (Vargo and Lusch, 2017). Actors are the customers, service providers, hotel staff, managers and others involved, while resource integration refers to the interconnection between facilities, services and offers provided to Aloft guests and their feedback. Service exchange involves the actual arrival and staying of guests, arrangement of music concerts and others that customers get by paying for the same.

With regards to the case scenario of service design assignment, the key component includes the service-exchange in these hospitality industries. For improving the service experience, Aloft uses virtual assist technology ChatBotlr where guests can chat with the assistant and gain information about the hotels, access playlists and provide service requests with their smart devices (Turgeon, 2019). Besides, it has a portable wine cart that automatically pours wine at guest rooms as requested. Furthermore, the brand also enhances the guest experiences through music and attracts millennial travellers (Chiquoine, J., 2019). It conducts homecoming tours for musicians, hosts impromptu concerts and asks musicians to play at its different hotel locations. In addition, Aloft stays connected and gains valuable feedback from guests through social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter with 172k, 17k and 32k followers respectively (Liffreing, 2017).

Aloft Hotels, being a part of Marriott has been performing well in the hospitality industry. However, for surviving in the competitive market, this service-based brand must emphasize more on guest experience and feedback. Aloft must capture regular feedback from its guests through different platforms and analyze the same for improving their experience. Furthermore, as stated in the service design assignment, it must introduce multiple tools and measurement indices, such as Net Promoter Score for evaluating the current state of guest satisfaction and consequently, track its progress over time. This would further help the brand to enhance its service experience. Aloft should further include financial rewards as incentives tied directly to guest satisfaction. This would motivate the organizational managers and employees to improve their service delivery and achieve positive results. Besides, the brand must focus on those particular guest segments that that has the largest benefits and improve the services of such segments that generate the most complaints or less revenue. Moreover, it must emphasize on connecting with the guests on a personal level through social media, mails and calls. Personalized experiences by adding small touches to the services provided can help to increase guest satisfaction. In addition, the feedback gained from the guests must be used for undertaking future decisions.

With the increasing number of travellers in the recent years and changing hospitality trends, the competitiveness in this industry is also growing. Many hotel chains are now present with various personalized services and experience through updated technology. Thus, Aloft hotels must analyze their current service designs for enhancing their guest experiences and keep other international competitors at bay. The research study developed in the service design assignment has helped in critically evaluating the service design and dominant logic of Aloft brand with the help of Double Diamond Model and Value Co-creation Process. This has further helped in identifying how the hotel chain can change its service design for improving the guest experience.

Reference List
Aloft, 2020a. Overview. [online] service design assignment Available at: <> (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Aloft, 2020b. Step Inside. [online] Available at: < > (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Aloft, 2020c. Live At Aloft. [online] Available at: (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Chiquoine, J., 2019. How Marriott’s Aloft Sub-brand Uses Music To Reach Experience-Obsessed Millennial Travelers. [online] psfk. Available at: < > (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Design Council, 2020. Design methods for developing services. [pdf] Available at: <
%20for%20developing%20services.pdf> (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Ferreira, F.K., Song, E.H., Gomes, H., Garcia, E.B. and Ferreira, L.M., 2015. New mindset in scientific method in the health field: Design Thinking. Clinics, 70(12), pp.770-772.

HTN, 2017. Aloft Hotels, Part of Marriott International, Launches “ChatBotlr” Mobile Service. [online] Available at: < > (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Liffreing, I., 2017. Instaworthy’ touches: How Marriott incorporates digital into its boutique hotels. [online] Digiday. Service design assignment Available at: < > (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Lusch, R.F. and Nambisan, S., 2015. Service innovation: A service-dominant logic perspective. MIS Quarterly, 39(1), pp.155-176.

Marriott International, 2020. Aloft Hotels: Brand Overview. [online] Available at: < > (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Oates, G., 2014. Skift Q&A: How Aloft Hotels Is Targeting Next Gen Mobile Travellers. [online] Skift. Available at: <> (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Turgeon, J., 2019. Digital Disruption in Hospitality: Seven Top Technology Applications. [online] Hospitality Tech. Available at: < > (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Vargo, S.L. and Lusch, R.F., 2017. Service-dominant logic 2025. International Journal of Research in Marketing, 34(1), pp.46-67.

Verdict Media Limited, 2020. Aloft Hotel, Brussels. [online] service design assignment Available at: < > (Accessed 15 August 2020)

Appendix: Service Improvement Blueprint of Aloft Hotel

service design assignment


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