Hospitality: challenges and opportunities for a sustainable future
The design of the research aimed to take into consideration both supply, through a survey of hotels in Milan and its hinterland using a methodology of qualitative imprint (participant observation, interviews with those responsible for the facilities, desk analysis of the documentation), and demand, through a survey (quantitative questionnaire distributed online and paper questionnaire administered face to face) addressed to Italian tourists. More in detail, the following were examined: communication (from the websites of hotels and tourist boards to brochures illustrating their offerings, to search engines such as Trivago, Booking.com, etc.), customer reviews and hoteliers' answers, reception (i.e. welcoming the customer from the moment of check-in, interaction with the staff of the various departments and the problem of outsourced workers and their training), services (i.e. the increasingly varied offer in the face of more varied demand), security, promotion of the area (i.e. the use and sale in the hotel of typical local products, the creation of packages that include activities and visits to places of tourist interest) and links with the local community (the opening of fitness centres or catering also for non-guests, the organization of events, etc.).); attention to the surrounding environment and sustainability (from construction to furniture, management and use of facilities, impact on the surrounding area), the food and drink offer (a theme particularly important for Italy, bearing in mind that the choices may favour local, ethnic and vegan cuisine, catering also for people with specific allergies or religious limitations), the hotel spaces, especially the bedrooms.