the Gaylord Rockies Resort and Convention Center just outside Denver is known to put an exponential factor on Christmas. A towering Christmas tree in the resort’s Grand Lodge serves as the backdrop for family vacation photos, and there’s joy around every corner, pop-up toboggan hills and the village ice rink of Mistletoe where children decorate gingerbread houses and pose for photos with Santa Claus.
But new for this holiday season, the Gaylord has collaborated with Warner Bros. Themed Entertainment to bring an “Elf” experience to the resort so kids (and kids at heart) can feel immersed in the 2003 Christmas comedy backdrop.
It’s a trend that’s taken off faster than Santa’s sleigh this holiday season: by entering into exclusive partnerships with corporations or entertainment networks, resorts and vacation rentals have added an extra element. of escape to customer experience.
Other examples include Wyndham’s Club suites that were designed by Hallmark and that have sprung up in three locations, from a classic New York takeover to a winter wonderland in Vail, Colorado to a cozy, rustic aesthetic in Nashville, Tennessee. The Suites are the perfect host for those who enjoy vacationing in Fair Isle pajamas, sipping hot chocolate and choosing from over 40 holiday movies Hallmark released this year.
And, until Christmas, the vacation rental management platform Vacasa partnered with Dr. Seuss Enterprises to create a stay modeled on the famous Grinch Cave in a remote location outside of Boulder, Utah. The Whoville-inspired whimsical stay was accompanied by a fantasy script written by the Grinch:
âMyself, unlike all the other Who’s, I’m heading out of town this year, away from all the holiday hubbub with its fanatic and fantastic fa la la la la, la la la la-ing. Am I still stealing Christmas? May be. Am I visiting my Florida beach house? Do not worry about that.
Co-branding is a smart strategy, says Dan Green, director of the Master of Entertainment Industry Management at Carnegie Mellon University, because it’s a fun way for hotels to stand out in the crowded hotel industry.
âThis is a win-win situation for the hotel brand as well as the cinema or network brand,â Green told Forbes. âHotels can accommodate audiences who are passionate about cinema and are looking for a unique experience and to tell their friends about it or share it on social networks. This “word of mouth” only promotes both the hotel brand and the network itself. “
At the elf-themed Gaylord, the interactive sets are elaborate and Tik Tok-worthy, inviting guests to a dance competition in a space designed to resemble the mailroom (remember when Will Ferrell’s character “Buddy the Elf âgoes wild and breaks up the dances toâ Whoom is he here? â). Another set is about throwing snowballs with scenes of Central Park in the background and another is a dupe of the famous department store that Buddy decorates before Santa’s visit.
In addition to the Gaylord Rockies in Colorado, the Gaylord Palms in Florida, Gaylord Opryland in Tennessee, Gaylord Texan in Texas, Gaylord and Gaylord National in Maryland also had the Elf partnership.
It’s a hotel trend that could spread to other vacations (spooky stays during Halloween, maybe?), But could also pave the way for more themed hotels, Green points out.
Last summer, Disneyland Paris, for example, opened Disney’s Hotel New York – The Art of Marvel it’s a Thor’s hammer throw from the park and comes complete with superhero suites and over 350 superhero artwork. Imagine the draw, says Green, of the Star Wars or DC Universe hotels.
Stay tuned. More film collaborations could arrive at hotels near you in 2022.