Value for Money when Purchasing for Hotels: K. AVOID FAKES!!!

BurjKhalifaPrettyLet's use cars as a metaphor. The designer specifies a Rolls Royce. But the owner wants to pay less than a Rolls Royce costs. He therefore buys a fake.

So, this is what is specified...

real Rolls Royce

...and this is what is bought -- a Geely GE:


geely-ge-limo 1

For the price of the fake, he could have bought a Jaguar.

In this case, this is what would be specified...

...and this is what would be bought:

Jaguar XJ

A fake Rolls Royce or a real Jaguar: which is going to represent the best value for money? Obviously -- I mean, really obviously -- the latter!

The real Rolls Royce has to be made to the standard that earned Rolls Royce their reputation in the first place: the design, the drive train, the handling, the road holding, the interior, even the umbrella in the door plus, of course, total reliability -- and Rolls Royce have to maintain those standards in every car they make if that reputation is not to be tarnished.

All the fake Rolls Royce has to do is look a bit like a real Rolls Royce.

Whereas by specifying the Jaguar, and buying the Jaguar, the purchase is within budget, and the hotel is acquiring everything that Jaguar stands for, and that would have led to its being specified in the first place -- not something that looks a bit like a real Jaguar. This includes full aftersales support, should it ever be needed.

Fakes are the standard recourse in an industry obsessed with price. They are the enemy of value, however.

They will be cheaper because:

a.    the expensive part -- the two years of design and engineering -- is free: it has been stolen from the owner of the intellectual property

b.    their only raison d'être is that the buyer wants something cheap

c.    if the customers are silly enough to buy something because it looks like something else, they obviously don't care about how well it is made. Indeed, the faker is likely to be incapable of matching the qualities of the original, even if he wanted tol. Nobody expects a fake Rolex to exhibit the standards of engineering of a real Rolex (so why do people buy them?!) 

More seriously, why would the maker bother to comply with safety regulations, let alone build in reliability and longevity? If a design can be faked, Certificates of Conformity can be faked as well. So it is not just that fakes don't last and have to be replaced (buy cheap, buy twice), they may kill. Bad enough for the hotel from a PR perspective, but if the product that caused the fire, or electrocuted the guest, did not comply with local regulations, the hotel's public liability insurance may be invalidated....

There are so many five star hotels that are crammed full of fakes, that you have to wonder about the owner's lack of pride, and about his or her cynical contempt for the customer who, after all, is being charged an arm and a leg for the privilege of staying in the owner's soi-disant luxury environment.

Yet, to the customer that genuinely knows about luxury products, this is the impression he gets as he walks through the "luxury" hotel:

Dolce&BananaersptePizza HuhBucksstarMcDuck

Sadly, one of the main losers is the designer consultancy that specified the real thing. Because the results have been so compromised, there are many instances where they want to disown what should have been a fantastic reference project for them.

By following the value guidelines in this series of posts, it is possible to specify in such a way that the correct items are purchased, so that the owner gets good value and the designer can be proud of the finished result.

Oh, and you know the best bit? China plans to create a seven star copy Dubai's Burj Khalifa  (thanks to HotelChatter for this story). So, not just a few lights, but the whole hotel (that we have showing at the head of these posts) will be a fake -- and a "luxury" fake at that!


Note: this series of posts builds up into a single Briefing, a PDF of which is downloadable here: A Briefing on Value for Money when Purchasing for Hotels.

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