How These 6 Hotel Brands Use Instagram to Inspire Your Dream Stay

Vacation like an influencer

The impression that a hotel's Instagram feed makes on potential guests is as essential as its website and online reviews. Illustration: Trent Joaquin; Sources: Unsplash/Pixabay

As Instagram continues to “win friends” and influence people, the impression that a hotel feed makes on potential guests is as essential as its website and online reviews. Brands are tasked with being modern-day storytellers, keeping their content fresh and captivating and churning out glimpses of obtainable fantasies.

But behind a hotel’s vision and inspirational teases is the desire to sell you a lifestyle and escape from reality: somewhere stylish, with sprawling views and the option of breakfast in bed. Crafted cocktails are served in a coupe glass and taste as good as they look. Curtains are strategically drawn so that rooms glow and the sun casts shadows on the carefully made beds. Color palettes are dreamy and vibrant, and commissioned art is everywhere. Soaking tubs are filled with bubbles (and an influencer living their best life while holding a glass of champagne).

Here are a few hotel brands that are using Instagram to grab consumer’s attention.

The Line Hotel

The team behind The Line Hotel in Washington, D.C., knows that the fantasy begins with visiting and spending the night inside a converted 110-year-old church, which now serves as a lobby boasting heavenly high 60-foot ceilings, complete with preserved stained glass windows and a magnificent chandelier repurposed from organ pipes. The story continues as guests bask in the golden glow cast by the stained glass windows during happy hour—already a religious experience for some.

The Hoxton

The Hoxton offered festive winter domes in its Williamsburg courtyard for guests to dine while surrounded by Christmas trees. And if that wasn’t enough, the hotel chain, which already caters to “lobby hustlers” and “laptop warriors” working from its Wi-Fi-filled lobbies, is now extending its lifestyle brand to include “Working From” lavish member-only workspaces in select cities. Now your dream of living in a hotel is one step closer to reality—and you don’t even have to leave the app to book a tour.

The William Vale

Five-star boutique hotel The William Vale is satisfying from every angle—even puddles—providing ongoing architectural inspiration for the feed. Every photo could seduce you into booking your stay. Every guest room has a balcony with a view, Mister Dips is served from the window of a retrofitted 1974 Airstream at Vale Park, and you can save this open-air Jacuzzi in an Instagram photo collection titled “Someday” because it sits on the patio of a duplex suite with a nightly price tag of $12,000.

The Williamsburg Hotel

Around the corner, The Williamsburg Hotel pays tribute to New York’s iconic water towers with The Water Tower, a custom-built, reservation-only cocktail lounge with floor-to-ceiling windows and views of Manhattan while overlooking a rooftop pool. Similar breathtaking views are available (from the comfort of a soaking tub) in the Skyline Suite. The feed is also filled with blue Pyrolave-glazed wall tiles, a top-performing color on the ‘gram. And who can resist high tea when its served like this?

1 Hotels

Nature inspires the “sprouting” of 1 Hotels, where it’s Earth Day every day and a strategically placed hammock is calling your name. Here, you can live in nature, a “concrete jungle where dreams are made,” surrounded by different plants. The chain also presents guests with an opportunity to give back to the planet and its inhabitants.

The Standard

For years, The Standard has set the bar as a provocative lifestyle brand, catering to and making headlines for hotel guests interested in exhibitionism. The Hollywood location is famous for its ongoing art installation known as “The Box,” and the feed provides a creative space for those who are “always interesting and anything but.” Prepare to be inspired. Next up is The Standard London, where the exterior red lift is enough to secure plans to visit.

Welcome to advertising in the age of Instagram. This is not the time to be modest.

Leslie Richin is a freelance writer for Adweek.