Hotel Lighting

Hotel Lighting 101: What Lighting Do Hotels Use?

Hotels are no longer simply places to sleep when you’re away from home. They now offer a whole range of facilities, from conference spaces to wedding venues.

As a result, hotel lighting needs to be functional and beautiful. It needs to create impact and let guests use spaces the way they need to.

With so many types of lighting to choose from, how do you know which lights to use where?

Read on to learn about the different types of hotel lighting you might use.

Lighting for Lobbies

Lobbies usually use a combination of three types of lighting: track, recessed, and cove. Lighting in this area is designed to help with wayfinding, but also to help give a good impression of the hotel.

Cove lighting uses fluorescent tubes which light up any decorative walls or ceilings in the lobby. Many hotels also use reflector bulbs for recessed lighting because this gives a better distribution of light.

These bulbs also work for accent lighting. If you’re highlighting displays or artwork, you want bulbs that are more focused.

Standard light bulbs are fine in lobby table lamps. These help to create an ambiance and provide somewhere for people to read if they’re waiting.

Make sure you discuss your lobby lighting plans with a lighting designer. Does your hotel have a single lobby with different areas for different functions? Lighting can help divide them up to make the spaces easier to find.

For example, you might use cozy, warm lighting in a bar area, and clear downlights in the check-in spaces.

Lighting for Elevators

Most hotels use ‘elevator bulbs’ in their elevators. These are reflector bulbs with a double-contact base. They lock into position when installed.

Traditional elevator bulbs are 20W but elevators are a common area to install LED lights. This is a great way to save energy as the LED option is only 2W per bulb.

Hotel Room Lighting

Most hotel rooms have floor lamps or desk lamps. These lights use standard light bulbs.

This is another part of the hotel where you can switch to LED lighting. LED bulbs don’t need reflectors or diffusers, making them more efficient for downlights.

They can also last 30 times longer than incandescent bulbs. This makes them a cost-effective choice.

Hotel rooms sometimes have recessed cans that take reflector bulbs. The distribution isn’t great for these hotel room lights.

Remember that people don’t use hotel rooms in the same way. Provide enough lights in enough places that they can do what they need to. Make sure that you’re offering ambient, task, and accent lighting to provide the most flexibility.

A master switch to turn off all lights at once is also a helpful touch.

Event Spaces

Many hotels feature restaurants and offer conference rooms as event spaces for hire.

It’s good to make hotel lighting in conference spaces as flexible as possible. Downlights, panel lighting, or bar lights can help you achieve this.

These lighting types give you a range of light sources which keep the room well-lit. It can also help you to achieve a classy design, which will keep people coming back to use your event spaces.

The lighting in your restaurant will depend on the type of cuisine on offer. Do you want an intimate, elegant dining space? Or is the design more functional and everyday?

Again, installing a range of light sources can help you to achieve a diverse look.

Gyms or Exercise Spaces

If you have a gym or an exercise space in your hotel, you need ambient lighting. This provides a uniform level of light around the whole space.

This helps with safety, but it also helps to make the space more usable. Wall-mounted or ceiling-mounted fixtures are good choices. Add track lights and LED downlights for extra illumination.

Hallway Lighting

Some hotels focus on the lighting for lobbies and rooms, but they forget about the corridors. Hotel corridors are still an important part of the hotel journey.

Lighting needs to be good enough to help with wayfinding, but also to create an experience. If you have warm, intimate lighting in the lobbies and rooms, but cold utilitarian lighting in the corridors, it spoils that experience.

Many corridors use recessed lighting to save on wall space. Reflector bulbs are a standard choice for even distribution of light.

Wall sconces usually take standard bulbs or torpedo bulbs. Both bulbs come in a frosted or clear finish, to help create the right ambiance.

Make sure you follow any regulations for emergency lighting for hotels when you design your hallway lighting scheme.

Maintenance Spaces

Linear fluorescent tubes are the most common choice for maintenance spaces. These tubes are usually T8s or T12s, although T12s are being phased out. Compatible linear LEDs are a possible replacement for retrofit projects.

The same can be said of parking garages. Since the lights stay on all day, switching to LED options will save energy and money.

Exterior Hotel Lighting

Many hotels use wall packs as exterior fixtures. They light up the surrounding ground or sidewalk, improving security. These fixtures require HID light bulbs.

You can also use hanging fixtures or canopy lighting to help light up stairs and entrances. These help improve accessibility and reduce accidents.

Spotlights are also a great way to highlight design features or architectural details. You can vary the color of these lights for more impact.

Light Your Hotel

You can create impact or design a mood with the right hotel lighting. The proper lights also improve safety, save money, and help guests do what they need to do.

Using hotel LED lighting also helps you to improve your green credentials. You can still enjoy stunning lighting schemes in a sustainable way.

Keen to learn more about property developments? Check out our real estate articles for more advice.

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