Serviced apartments have been around longer than most people realise — having an effect, in fact, for over a decade.
The phrase “Serviced Apartment” refers to a sort of furnished apartment offered for short-term or long-term stays, which includes amenities, cleaning, and a variety of services for visitors, as well as most taxes and utilities.
Serviced apartments provide features much like a regular hotel but with extra room, convenience and privacy like home, so you may experience living like a local while visiting. Their living and sleeping quarters are bigger than those of typical hotel rooms, and they frequently have access to amenities like gyms, restaurants, conference rooms, concierges, and other hotel-like services. They may feature a kitchenette or a complete kitchen with a dishwasher and a washing machine.
‘Serviced Apartment’ as a phrase has been very seldom utilised outside the corporate relocation and business travel industry. They have long been available for booking on most online travel agencies, but there is no specific category for them; instead, they are simply referred to as “apartments” and sold alongside ordinary hotel rooms.
People are increasingly turning to serviced apartments as a reputable and cost-effective choice for their leisure trip as a result of the industry’s global reach. They are particularly inexpensive for longer trips, group travel or family celebrations, providing savings on eating out and giving in-house entertainment as well as allowing you to live like a local.
But unlike certain unregulated parts of the sharing economy, such as home-share sites where you might move into someone else’s home for your stay and take a chance in terms of health and safety and standard of accommodation, we as a trade body aim to ensure the consumer has confidence in what they will find when booking serviced apartment accommodation anywhere in the world.
A serviced apartment should have the following amenities:
- A kitchen with all of the necessary appliances, including a dishwasher and a washer/dryer
- A distinct sleeping place, whether it’s in a home with many bedrooms or a studio apartment.
- A living area
- A bathroom
- TV, Wi-Fi and the newest in-room technologies
- All utilities included i.e. water & electricity
- Housekeeping services provided on a weekly basis (many operators offer a more frequent service if required)
There are a variety of subcategories under which serviced flats may be found, including:
- Serviced Apartment– Self-contained units generally inside a residential complex. There may or may not be employees on site, thus the operator may arrange to greet visitors on arrival or make keys accessible through a safety deposit box. Some may even give keyless entry access through cellphones or other devices. And visitors will have access to a 24-hour hotline.
- Aparthotel– serviced flats inside a distinct building, giving hotel-like facilities with a 24-hour reception. These may also provide extra services like a common lounge or an on-site gym. Some operators name their units ‘suites’ inside an aparthotel.
- An apartment, condominium, or home that is offered for short-term rental, such as a month to month or a year to year basis, is known as “Corporate Housing.” The corporate travel world has long seen the advantage of this kind of accommodation for executives on longer business trips or during relocations, as they allow the traveller a more ‘normal’ way of life outside hotels, with the chance to cook, relax and plan their time away from hotel operating hours.
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