How to Write a Hotel Business Plan

Large and small hotels require a business plan.
Large and small hotels require a business plan. (Image: hotel image by pearlguy from

Writing a hotel business plan forces you to think carefully and strategically about your ideas. Without a plan, hotel owners, managers and staff may be confused or overwhelmed about the hotel's goals and management approach. It's critical to write a business plan during the planning process of building a new hotel. Also, write a new business plan to refocus long-established hotels to meet changing marketing needs or when hotels changes hands.

Write the hotel’s mission statement. Succinctly describe your hotel, including what services it provides and who its guests are. Include information about what makes your hotel different from similar or nearby hotels. Consider where it's located and describe any interesting features. Some organizations write mission statements that are easy to memorize; if your mission statement is too long, it may indicate poorly thought-out goals for the hotel.

Create a detailed description of your prospective guests. The fundamental aspect of any hotel is its guests. Write detailed information about the guests, including whether the hotel caters to individuals or families, leisure travelers or business, and short-stay or long-stay travelers, as well as their travel habits. Include an overview of your customer service goals. Consider how the staff will treat the guests and what training, initial and ongoing, is required so that the staff can provide that level of service.

Develop the marketing portion of your hotel business plan. Articulate why guests will want to come to your hotel rather than to your competitors' and how guests will find out about your hotel and services. Describe your marketing niche. Include advertising, public relations and word-of-mouth goals. Calculate how much time and money are required to generate the type of publicity you want.

Generate measurable goals for your hotel that include dates, percentages, numbers and amounts. Be specific rather than general and base your figures on available data, not guesswork. Describe how many guests will visit, how long they will stay and how much money they'll spend. Calculate all of your expenses, including fixed costs (expenses that don't change, such as rent or insurance) and variable costs (expenses that vary according to the season and number of guests, such as utility bills and hourly wages). Figure your gross and net income.

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  • "Anatomy of a Business Plan: The Step-by-Step Guide to Building a Business and Securing Your Company's Future"; Linda Pinson; 2008
  • SBA: Write a Business Plan
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