We’re not sure who came up with the idea that a hotel should feel like home, but Moxy Hotels, Marriott’s “millennial-minded” boutique-hotel chain, is calling B.S.
The Moxy ethos is that a hotel should be unpredictable, communal, and very much unlike home—even a bit outside a guest’s comfort zone—and the brand’s new Cherry Creek North location, Moxy Denver, set to open this fall, promises to deliver unexpected experiences and amenities from breakfast to the bedtime story (yes, really).
Gone are the buttoned-up bellmen and marble-clad lobbies of more traditional hotels. At Moxy Denver, check-in happens at the bar via mobile phone, and guests are presented with cocktails, not keys (their phones are their keys, of course).
Gone are the gift shop and restaurant, too. A self-serve, automated “retail machine” dispenses electronics, fashion accessories, cosmetics, and gift items—all curated for Moxy guests. A 24/7, grab-and-go food-and-beverage display (think: yogurt and fresh fruit in the morning, hot entrées at night) features a “fix-it” station filled with imaginative ingredients with which to doctor up any selection. Opening in spring 2018, the adjacent, outdoor Cherry Creek Beer Garden—a rustic-chic interpretation of the traditional biergartens found in every German town—offers bites and drinks for “smart people who prefer their craft beer in a can.”
While there’s speedy, free WiFi in every corner and elevator car (the latter designed to function as a selfie photo booth, complete with props), the hotel’s “crew” is less ubiquitous but every bit as helpful—there when guests need them, but not silently giving them the once over when they don’t.
Moxy’s disruptive approach extends to the hotel’s 170 guestrooms, too. The smaller-than-usual spaces respond to the needs of young travelers, who would rather have 47-inch televisions than closets, and who typically only want to sleep in their rooms—and spend the rest of their stay socializing in the hotel’s 3,000 square feet of communal spaces.
Denver-based architecture and interior-design firm Johnson Nathan Strohe (you’ve seen their work at Denver’s Maven, Crawford, and Halcyon hotels) designed Moxy Denver’s modern architecture—the curved wood form at the entry calls to mind an iconic Noguchi table—and industrial-chic interiors featuring a sleek-yet-warm palette of leather, wood, metal, and concrete. Designed to function as intimate living rooms, eclectic furniture groupings invite guests to plug in and put their feet up—or join new friends for a game of Cards Against Humanity.
What Moxy Denver seems to be saying about the future of hotel design is that travelers want more connections (online and offline), personality and fun, and less of the stodgy stuff older generations call service. And above all else, they want something much more exciting than just another night at home.