Redefining Vacation Properties Through Innovative Architecture

The condotel trend

If you’ve ever vacationed in a popular destination town, chances are, you’ve seen or even stayed in a condotel development without even knowing it. 

Condotels, a fusion of condominiums and hotels, have rapidly emerged as a significant architectural trend, transforming the landscape of vacation accommodations. Imelda Barnhurst, Owner and Principal of Gienapp Architects, anticipates their continued rise in popularity, foreseeing their widespread adoption in architectural projects.

What is a condotel?

Condotels are redefining the way we view vacation accommodations. One of the major selling-points of condotels is that they offer many amenities that one would see in a traditional hotel, yet they are better suited, and often more affordable, for extended stays.

Many new condotel developments offer amenities like housekeeping, 24-hour check- in, security, fitness centers, and pools, similar to a hotel property. But, at a condotel, you don’t have to sacrifice amenities for comfort, as rooms are strategically designed with kitchens and additional living spaces for longer-term use.

“With our expertise in residential and multifamily projects, our team is able to create designs that accommodate both the comfort and the convenience into these development plans,” says Kerry Ditson of Gienapp. This hybrid concept caters to the modern lifestyle, where individuals seek the convenience of hotel services while enjoying the privacy and personalization of a residential space.

Condotels are particularly popular in destination locations, such as in ski resort towns or on beachfront property. However, this architectural trend is also increasing in popularity in urban areas. “Being located just north of Boston, we have been engaged in several condotel projects along the coast in New England. The multifamily housing space has always been one of our speciality areas, and we’re excited to see this new trend gaining traction in our area,” says  Imelda Barnhurst, Owner and Principal of Gienapp Architects.

Condotels as investment properties 

Condotels are also becoming an increasingly popular form of investment, and a great option for budget-conscious individuals or families interested in owning a vacation property. “For many, owning a vacation property or second-home has never been in the scope of reality,” says Barnhurst. “But, condotels are changing that reality, allowing people to buy a vacation property, spend a few weeks there, and then rent it out for the rest of the season or year.” 

Economic aspects

A major benefit of these developments are the economic advantages for both developers and investors. The dual-purpose nature of these developments allows developers to maximize land use efficiency, creating a higher density of residential and commercial spaces. Investors, on the other hand, benefit from the potential dual income streams – rental income from residents and revenue generated from the “hotel” operations. This financial viability makes condotels an attractive option in the real estate market, driving their popularity among both developers and investors.

Condotels are poised to shape the future of architecture by seamlessly blending the best of both worlds – the comfort of home and the luxury of a hotel. The condotel phenomenon is not merely a passing trend but rather a reflection of society’s evolving needs and desires, paving the way for a new era in architectural innovation.