Water Features and Landscaping Can Add Value to Hotels

water feature

As the pandemic-induced travel lull abates and hotel occupancy increases, hospitality owners and operators are looking ahead to the sector’s next potential big challenge: the state of the economy.

With four consecutive months of inflation exceeding 5 percent, the industry may be entering a period of stagflation, a rare period of low growth, and rising prices that will likely raise room rates and dampen people’s enthusiasm for traveling and staying in hotels and resorts. To preempt this, hospitality stakeholders are seeking amenities that will attract guests to their hotels and provide them with more bang for their buck at a time when that buck may not stretch as far.

As inflation looms on the horizon, here are a few ways incorporating signature features and amenities, particularly theming and water features, can benefit hotel and resort owners and operators.

Enhance a Project’s Identity

To stay ahead of ever-increasing competition, it’s important to keep properties refreshed and updated for people on vacations and staycations alike. Thanks to the internet, pricing has never been easier to compare; to avoid falling into a race to the bottom, lucrative properties are branding themselves around signature architectural and landscape amenities to rise above and attract more affluent guests who elect to pay a premium to stay at destination resorts.


Environments featuring large-scale natural and artificial rockwork and water features are transformative experiences and serve as major draws. These amenities form the backdrops for a variety of activities ranging from weddings and proposals, celebrations, bar and bat mitzvahs, and social media posts.

Allow Guests to Relax

Amenities that help people de-stress are in demand in our hectic society and are even more valued during uncertain times. Water features can decrease stress while improving mental and emotional health. Water’s trickling or rushing sounds, combined with the sensation of spray and the sight of water movement, could impart a sense of wellbeing. Owners and operators can provide this benefit by incorporating water features into their properties.

Add Value

Guests seeking ways to relax during their stays have an increasing number of experiences available to do so. Driving them to on-site revenue generators, such as food and beverage or retail, starts with enticing them to stay on property.

Immersive landscaping featuring fountains and rockwork can deliver visual appeal and evoke a sense of opulence to a property. Guests at hotels with water features and landscapes feel pampered, which might be why they choose to stay at these properties and often stay a bit longer.

Attracting new guests and increasing their length of stay helps improve ROI at hotels and resorts at a time when driving revenue may be challenging. These amenities give guests an additional reason to visit and return to hotel venues—and recommend them to their friends, families, and colleagues for upcoming trips.

As the hospitality industry steadies itself from the last crisis and readies itself for the next, stakeholders are looking for ways to draw in guests and entice them to return. By adding value to their assets, providing safe places to gather indoors and out, and enabling people to unwind, surprising landscapes and water features help hotel and resort owners and operators differentiate their properties and thrive well into the future.

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Chris Roy is director of creative design for Outside the Lines, Inc. (OTL), a design-build themed construction company that specializes in creating rockwork, water features, and themed environments for office, retail entertainment, hospitality, gaming, and golfing projects around the globe.