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Holiday Inn's New 'Social Hubs' Will Have You Playing Wii, Chilling in Cabanas and More

April 15, 2011 at 10:18 AM | by | ()

The days of Holiday Inns with generic lobbies, business centers packed with fax machines and only regular or decaf coffee with breakfast are almost over. Get ready for Holiday Inns with cappuccino machines, an "e-desk," and a lobby that's more like a living area complete with gaming zone; it's called the "Social Hub," another humongous advance by Holiday Inn after their $1 billion rebranding.

There's a lot of information and details to discuss with regard to the new "Social Hub," but what you really need to know is that you'll be able to experience all of the new stuff as early as June, when the Atlanta area's Holiday Inn Gwinnett Center launches it for real. A second, yet-to-be named property will also get a social hub later this year but the roll-out plan for the rest of Holiday Inns worldwide is still being fleshed out.

So what's exactly in a "Social Hub" aside from good eats? Let's see...

Business Center? Gone. After checking in at a desk that reminds us more of an upscale chef's kitchen island, guests can simply walk right over to sort of tech concierge to print travel confirmations, inquire about the free WiFi, or—heaven forbid—fax something.

Late-night sketchy walks to grab some snacks from a nearby convenience mart? Gone. The Social Hub includes a 24/7 Grab 'n Go corner, with packaged food and beverage options. Or just forego the lonely snacking altogether by hitting the bar, which includes little peninsula tables so you can actually face the people with whom you're drinking and chatting.

Blah continental breakfast with gross coffee? Gone. Let's talk lattes, made-to-order eggs and omelets from a chef station and a spread in an area far more comfortable than the greasy corner booth at the diner around the corner. How they use their chef station will be up to each hotel, however, and so you may find yourself ordering pasta from a chef for lunch, with sides served not in massive chafing dishes, but in smaller, homier pots.

Kids running amok or taking all the good lobby seats? Gone. The Holiday Inns that can include the Social Hub's gaming area will have it easy. Stick your kids in front of Wii consoles or flatscreen TVs while you chill at bar-height seating doing your own thing, but with a constant eye directly over them.

And finally, some Holiday Inns will sport the Social Hub's hippest option of firepits and full-on cabanas. There's no wingback chairs or paisley carpeting in sight, and—get this—Holiday Inn is hoping that the new design and general warm, welcoming atmosphere with draw in locals too. Have you ever thought, "oh man, I am so bored tonight—let's go hang out at the Holiday Inn?" Yea, us neither, but maybe that all will change come 2012...

Now let's let the fancy video do the rest of the explaining:

[Photos and video: Holiday Inn]

Archived Comments:

waitting for 2012

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