[dropcap size=big]F[/dropcap]rench group Accorhotels is launching a new concept called Jo & Joe, which will embody the fledgling trend for “joie de vivre” in its day-glo, pop-art design, its uplifting, inclusive mood and quirky, playful interiors.
By 2020, the company plans to have opened 50 Jo & Joe “Open Houses” (a combination of hotel, hostel and apartment), with the first to come in 2018, in Paris and Bordeaux. Warsaw, Budapest, Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo will follow, with all properties in central locations no more than 15 minutes from major tourist sites.
The joie de vivre trend will be very much present in the Spring/Summer 2017 fashion collections, with clothing and accessories in riotous colours, outlandish textures and jazzy prints from brands such as Prada, Miu Miu and Tod’s.
In spite of (and perhaps as a deliberate act of defiance) troubling political times, this year sees a focus on happiness, optimism and positive psychology. With beige, brown and cream being the palette of choice for hotels for so long, there is finally a shift towards accommodation with personality.Hoteliers are feeling braver, turning to new Pantone charts, customisable interiors with furniture on wheels, collaborative living and a sense of community.Jo & Joe has been conceived to be a “disruptive” force within the hotel industry by combining “the best of private rental, hostel and hotel formats”. It’s also planning to reinvent catering, service and the customer journey. Led by Accorhotels Marketing Innovation Lab, the company has called on the help of travellers, students and external experts to help come up with the new concept.Neighbourhood is central to the Jo & Joe Open House, which wants to attract not just tourists from overseas but locals. On top of this, the company wants to enable interaction between them, with the help of to open-plan common areas, and activities such as yoga classes, concerts and DIY workshops. (This is a continuation of the “lifestyle” trend hotel chains first adopted a couple of years ago.)There will also be an app to help locals and visitors message each other, initiate events, organise meet-ups, share tips or give tours. Other fun features include the “Happy House”, where guests can chill, work, prepare food, work or do their laundry, rather like at co-living commune.Jo & Joe will be jumping on the band wagon with restaurants and bars serving locally sourced produce, craft beer, sharing plates and healthy options. Food will be cooked in woks, open-flame barbecues, pizza ovens and grills. What is innovative will be the Collaborative Kitchen, where guests can cook for themselves or others.
With rates starting from 25 euros a night, and rooms designed for solo travellers, groups and families, Jo & Joe will standout against the competition. The company wants you to feel “safe, secure, comfortable and cosy”.Similar to a posh hostel, “Together” will see moveable, modular sleeping areas with beds, lockers, reading lights and USB ports. Bathrooms and recreation areas will be shared, and decor will be wacky and hip.Meanwhile, “Yours” will feature a mix of rooms and apartments for between two and five people with private kitchens and bathrooms.OOO (Out of the Ordinary) will essentially be Jo & Joe’s version of a signature themed suite. Different in every property, this accommodation might take the form of a yurt or a caravan. What could be more joie de vivre than that?Jo & Joe’s design concept was created by UK company Penson, which has also worked with Google, You Tube, PlayStation and Jay Z’s RocNation entertainment company.
Despite the marketing material being over-zealous and try-hard, Globetrender thinks Jo & Joe is significantly unique to make a splash, and will be popular among consumers. We’d certainly stay in one.