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Hospitality trends we expect to see in 2017

At IHG we like to keep a close eye on the four quarters that make up the year across all our hotels. This year, particularly in the third quarter we’ve seen a 7k increase in rooms and the first ever InterContinental in the Maldives!

This is great news for our ever expanding portfolio that continues to grow in scale and culture. Across all our hotels all over the world, we have been noticing certain food & beverage trends as we come into our final quarter for 2016.

We want to take a closer look at a handful of those that we can see continuing into the New Year and 2017. So take a read, and keep an eye out for these great trends.

Welcome to the dark side

July to September of this year saw a trend of black coloured food coming to the surface and we can see this continuing through the end of this year and into next. Forget rainbow displays of colour, we are talking black squid ink and charcoal to colour our foods. We think this could particularly work as we welcome the darker nights and Halloween and Bonfire festivities! 

Eat with your eyes – a feast for the senses

Although flavour does continue to be at the centre of innovation and trends, eating with our eyes has become increasingly important. It’s no secret we are living in a society that’s utterly obsessed with photographic evidence of the food and drink we consume. From aesthetically pleasing tasting menus, beautiful cocktails, to elaborate milkshakes topped with doughnuts and sweets, so long as we have Instagram we see this trend continuing all the way through 2017 and beyond!

Souping is the new juicing

The health conscious and detoxifying obsessed trend continues through the form of souping. Juicing became a worldwide trend over Spring/Summer, but as we enter the colder months in some countries this has been replaced with soup. This trend offers a thicker texture that is a warm and nutritious take on juicing. This is certainly a trend that could influence our winter menus.

Caribbean cuisine

Taking direct influence from creatures of the sea, Caribbean seafood was introduced as a niche trend that has developed to appeal to the mass market. We love the influence of the Central American islands and the Gulf of Mexico and we can see it continuing to appeal to a mass market in 2017.

Moral foods

Consumers continue to show an interest and care for the moral implications of food, ingredients and dining out. A sense of consciousness for the wider world came around in 2016 including where ingredients were sourced, and the management of waste. Consumers have shown an increased interest in ingredients, if they’re supporting local businesses, and whether they have any waste or charity initiatives in place.

Variety is the spice of life

Consumers more than ever are showing little brand loyalty toward alcohol, rather experimenting and variety is much more appealing. This is a trend we see particularly among cocktails and is a trend we expect to see continuing through the party season and into 2017.

Our trend reports for the past two years have noted the importance of hospitality being seen as a relationship between consumer and host that’s built on trust. It seems all the latest food & beverage trends that we see continuing into 2017 have a similar element attached to them.

Food & beverage experiences are just as much about the host, chef, waiter or barmaid as they are the dish or cocktail being served. This is something we can only see getting stronger in 2017, and so it’s ensuring the balance between relationship, experience, produce and service is the best it can be.

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