March 18, 2011

No more excuses to pack light... The Westin & New Balace get it right

I just love it when a company clearly identifies a relevant insight and creates a useful product or service. I'm constantly travelling on business and for someone like me there's always a conflict between packing light and staying fit. I want to be ready to work out when I'm at a hotel but packing athletic shoes is a hassle.

This week I stayed at The Westin Santa Fe in Mexico City. I was surprised to see that the hotel chain partnered with New Balance allowing guests to borrow shoes and apparel during their stay. Going online, I found out that there's more to it:

Westin guests will also benefit from travel-specific fitness content and added-value experiences provided by New Balance. New Balance Fitness Ambassador and Exercise TV celebrity trainer Holly Perkins will develop exclusive in-room fitness and equipment-free content that includes stretching and strengthening workouts, cardio and yoga. The program includes “Wellness in Travel” tips from Holly on nutrition and creative ways to combat jet lag and healthy living. In addition, New Balance is working with individual Westin properties to enhance its current three- and five-mile local area running maps. As part of the partnership, participating properties will provide guests traveling to a city for a major athletic event, such as a marathon, with wellness amenities, including turn-down gifts with “performance/fuel” goodies for the race and “good luck” wake-up calls.

That's a great example of a brand identifying a powerful insight, creating a service that connects with a very specific target: business travellers.

Next week, I have to travel to Mexico City again. I'm packing light and staying at the Westin.

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