Designing to Entice: Showcase of Official Websites of NYC Luxury Hotel
High-end product and service firms around the world are constantly innovating in their approach to representing their brand online, weaving attractive web design and development around that special “something” that gets across the luxury and status associated with the label.
Whether the product is a tangible one like vintage wine or imported chocolates or a service such as events and hospitality, the developers behind the web sites of luxury offerings work hard to create beautiful, functional places for potential and existing clients alike to find the information they need while being lured in by the quality of the brand.
One of the best examples of a luxury niche requiring something extra in web design are top-of-the-line hotels in New York City, New York. With stiff competition from rival hotels, designers know that an online presence is the first step in winning potential clients over to their product. Take a look at some of these websites to get an idea of what it looks like when luxury products meet luxury web design standards (many hotels from the lists are courtesy of Luxury-Hotels.com):
A beautiful combination of dark colors combined with excellent use of imagery make the website of the New York Palace hotel in midtown Manhattan a prime example of enticing design with a gleam of luxury. Prettiness aside, both content links and a room availability search form lie above the fold, giving visiting customers all they need at a moment’s glace and with minimal page movement.
Focusing on using photographs of rooms and premises to lure potential guests, the website of The Peninsula New York hotel also features dark colors to get across its air of quality, utilizing Adobe Flash to present visitors with an immediate peek at what the hotel has to offer.
The designers behind Hotel Giraffe’s website saw fit to not only present images, availability forms and quick links above the fold but also added clean white space below for easier presentation of textual content. Visitors are given an attractive overview of any given feature of the hotel’s experience within the site’s header with more detailed information always easily accessible with a quick downward scroll.
The Mercer Hotel, a trendy set of accommodations located in New York City’s Soho district, has taken a different approach with its web presence. Instead of elegant design attributes, The Mercer focuses instead on absolute simplicity, giving potential customers the information they need with little else to distract them.
Taking a middle road between overwhelming design and access to information is the website of The James Hotel. While, like its competitors, The James makes excellent use of scrolling photographs to give visitors a quick taste of what their hotel has to offer, the real focus is on the ability og customers to find the information they need and to make reservations with minimal clicks. Excellent use of sidebar placement to feature an accommodations search form makes this process easy, with top navigation links presenting an opportunity for a casual surf around the site only if desired by the visitor.
The general trend of dark colors in the interest of conveying luxury continues with the website of New York City’s The Muse Hotel. Imagery was obviously a priority in designing this site and photographs play a major role throughout the inner pages, lying below only the main navigation links.
A household name, even for those who have never stepped foot beyond its doors, is the Ritz-Carlton chain of hotels. With a brand as well known as Ritz-Carlton, the designers behind the hotel chain’s website took a road less traveled and one not seen previously in this list by maintaining a light color scheme and wide online interface. Like many of the other websites featured, photographs reign supreme here, with images used to convey the luxurious potential of rooms, events, food and premises.