9 Ways to Update Your Old Hotel While Still Keeping the Vintage Flair
Old hotels offer a guest experience like no other. They are a unique taste of nostalgia in an industry focused on sleek and modern design. However, even vintage hotels need updates to make the guest experience enjoyable.
Here are 10 ways to upgrade your accommodation while keeping its old-fashioned flair. You don’t need to sacrifice comfort and safety — most of these updates are invisible to the naked eye but will greatly improve your guests’ stay.
1. Update Your Electrical System
Electricity is one of the most important parts of your hotel. It controls your appliances and wireless network and helps your guests enjoy their stay.
If your hotel still relies on fuses, it’s way past time to upgrade your system to circuit breakers. A 200 amp electrical panel is a must for any accommodation that relies on modern appliances to provide the best guest experience.
One of the best parts of an upgraded electrical system is that it will not interfere too much with your vintage aesthetic since your guests won’t see the internal work you do.
2. Improve Your Plumbing
Like your electrical system, improving your plumbing system is a worthy investment for any old hotel.
Aging pipes are less efficient and could also pose a health risk to you, your staff and visitors. Modern copper pipes are a great option, with galvanized steel and polyvinyl chloride (PVC) remaining popular materials for homes and hotels.
Consider purchasing a more efficient water heater while updating your pipes. Modern electric and gas heaters use much less energy than older models, saving you money. They can heat the water faster, which your guests will likely appreciate.
3. Replace Your Toilets
Only a few people will complain if their vintage hotel has a modern toilet. Everyone has to use one, and cracks, mildew or rust can be a major turn-off.
Toilets are relatively easy and quick to install, making them an excellent upgrade choice. You can even purchase models that mimic older toilets but have modern mechanics that help them hold up better than their predecessors.
Choosing slightly larger toilets can help accommodate guests of all sizes, which was only sometimes the case decades ago. You could also sneak in other modern amenities , such as seat warmers or bidets, depending on your budget.
4. Upgrade Your Small Fixtures
Another quick upgrade is to change your smaller fixtures, including door handles, faucets and showerheads.
Brass, gold and silver fixtures were common decades ago, and you can still find these styles made from modern stainless steel and copper materials. Upgrading your door handles could be necessary to improve your hotel’s safety. Locks can wear over time , making it easier for guests to enter the wrong room or criminals to break in.
Current deadlocks and door handles are necessary sacrifices for the safety of everyone.
5. Add New Doors
Old doors are another potential hazard that is worth replacing. You can get more robust, secure versions made from wood or steel with designs that mimic vintage styles.
Cracks and gaps in doors can lead to drafts and uneven temperatures throughout your rooms. Those differences can make your heating and cooling systems work harder, costing you more money.
Old or damaged doors are also easier to break into, making them a safety hazard.
6. Install New Wood Paneling
Has the wood paneling on your walls seen better days? Thankfully, it’s back in style and can be replaced.
Reclaimed wood is an excellent option for updating your paneling while giving off a vintage feel. It’s a sustainable choice for any building and is retro and fashionable, and you can get it in various sizes and colors. You can purchase and install the paneling in a day or two for a hotel that feels old and new simultaneously.
7. Paint Your Walls
Another option for your walls is to paint them to match your vintage color scheme. If your hotel has old, stained and torn wallpaper, consider removing it and adding paint.
Manufacturers like Benjamin Moore and Sherwin Williams have vintage color collections that you can browse. A new coat of paint every seven years or so will keep your walls fresh.
It’s also easier than ever to add new wallpaper. Peel-and-stick options eliminate the need for scraping and pasting, leading to a smoother application that comes off easily when you want a new look.
8. Buy New Old Furniture
Vintage furniture is back on trend , which makes it easier than ever to find dupes of your favorite styles.
You can replace worn-down or broken furniture throughout your hotel by purchasing vintage replicas. Keep your vintage pieces in the lobby or common areas and replace what’s in your guests' rooms. This allows you to care for fewer pieces of old furniture and place more durable options with visitors who may treat the items rougher than you would.
Have your cleaning staff check the condition of your new furniture so you can repair and repaint any chips or cracks before they get out of hand.
9. Invest in New Mattresses
Mattress options are more luxurious than ever, and travelers often remember a comfortable bed.
Replacing your mattress allows you to keep your vintage duvet and whichever bed frame you desire while significantly improving your guest experience.
Many hotels now invest in hybrid mattresses that combine springs and memory foam. They are great options for short-term stays since they have a little bit for everyone.
You should also invest in new pillows for your guests. Offering soft and firm options can help them find the right combination of sturdiness for a better night’s sleep.
Updating Your Vintage Hotel
Old hotels have an irreplicable charm that you will want to keep as long as you can. Thankfully, you can retain the look while updating and improving the guest experience. These upgrades let you keep up with modern safety and structural advantages while maintaining that vintage feel.
Updated designs embracing the ornate, colorful options of the past make it easier than ever to upgrade your hotel and make everything old new again.