HERE’S THE GIST:
The Moxy Hotel is a boutique hotel of Mariott International, and our objective for the project was to design a communal-based solution that would help young business travelers stay at the hotel. Though our user research, our insights led us to conceive a solution that combined an app with a service design to maximize the users’ service satisfaction. The solution we presented was the Moxy Local (an app that connected you to food and entertainment) and Moxy Business (a hotel suite specifically for business). My biggest contribution was presenting my final storyboards.
Team Member(s): Mark Pragides, Kaila Quesada, Jordan Moravi
Duration: Two weeks
Tools: Adobe Illustrator, Adobe Photoshop
SO WHAT’S THE MOXY HOTEL?
It’s current CEO is Arne Sorenson.
THAT’S COOL, BUT WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO SOLVE?
So here’s the scoop: Mariott International’s research says that Millennials gather in public to schmooze, work, and drink. Sorenson sees an opportunity here and gave our design team the following problem to solve:
Design a solution for Mariott’s Innovation Lab to work on that offers hospitality, content and social means for the guests in communal spaces to connect with the Moxy Hotel.
GREAT! TELL ME ABOUT YOUR RESEARCH.
We used Google Forms to build user surveys that allow us to quantify the traveling habits of Millennials and young business travelers.
We found that the majority of users do believe that making connections with others is important when traveling for buisness.
We also found that a large portion of business travelers typically make it a habit of trying out local eateries when in the area.
I and my team went to the Marriott Hotel among other lodges and hostels to make contextual observations and conduct interviews with the guests. We also conducted interviews with people in our social networks to learn about their hotel living experiences and their corresponding routines:
“I like to be in my own world because traveling is so dynamic.”
“I would rather do my own research [when finding restaurants] because people are generally bad at estimating my needs and desires.”
Additionally, we compared the differences and similarities of other hotels to see where their practices stand and the value they provide for the user as opposed to the Moxy Hotel.
|AIRBNB||BOUTIQUE HOTEL||NICHE HOTEL|
|Emphasizes comfort of home people have their own space.||Has custom restaurants with local chefs from the city.||Go for a more local, hip, eclectic hotel experience.|
|Typically more affordable.||Focuses on creating unique experiences at each location.||Emphasizes the comfort of home while traveling.|
ANALYSIS TIME! WHAT DID ALL THIS TELL YOU?
More than we expected, I can tell you that. We dissected a lot of user data that seemed to originate from several topics. To organize this information, I helped to construct our data into an affinity map to determine trends and brainstorm possible solutions. These were the key insights I derived:
- When they are constrained by time and location, hotel guests will use hotel options out of convenience.
- People become stressed when they feel they don’t have control over their routines.>
- People favor lodging experiences where they feel at home, autonomous, and comfortable.
- People are motivated by incentives and a feeling of value.
- When it comes to socializing, individuals’ attitudes towards this will change depending on the circumstances and their emotions/feelings.
Through synthesizing these insights, we determined the following were the core values of our users:
COMFORT • CONTROL • AUTHENTICITY • CUSTOMIZATION • FEELING VALUED • CONSISTENCY
OKAY, HOTSHOT. WHAT’S YOUR DESIGN STRATEGY?
Well, as you can probably tell, our key insights are pretty varied and numerous. The only constant we knew was that our design had to apply to each insight in some fashion. As a result, we conducted a number of design techniques and workshops in order to narrow our design into a more actionable solution.
We took the core values and reconstructed them into the following design principles:
- Give users a sense of control over their hotel experience.
- Create a sense of comfort for hotel users.>
- Provide users with an authentic experience on their own terms.
- Be customizable to fit the needs of users.
- Make users feel valued.
- Provide consistency between the user’s online and in-person experience.
We also created three personas of hotel guests based on the key insights we derived from of our interviewees to help ideate our solution.
With our design principles and personas guiding us, it was time to start coming up with ideas. To do so, we chose to conduct a design studio and worked with another team in a rapid ideation session. We eventually came up with 16 viable concepts to choose from.
We created a numerical system to rate these concepts, keeping user needs and business needs in mind. We then prioritized the concepts by their ratings.
Based on results of our prioritization map, we found that the highest ranking of our concepts had the common thread of room service, food acquisition, and engaging with the local community. These would eventually serve as the foundation of our design solution.
AND…WHAT’S YOUR DESIGN SOLUTION?
My team consolidated the key takeways from our design studio, and at long last, we finally developed a cohesive and holistic service solution that satisfied our design principles. The service we designed is a two-fold solution:
• Moxy Local – a web and service-based experience designed to connect users with local food and social opportunities.
As the main sketcher and visual designer, I sketched some basic interface designs and artifacts for the Moxy Local platform. In addition, I drew up a blueprint of the room design for the Moxy Business.
WHAT ABOUT USER TESTING? HOW’D YOU VALIDATE THIS?
Using the aforementioned concept sketches and design artifacts as a reflection of our solution, my team connected with a number of users within The Moxy Hotel’s demographic and pitched our idea. We received the following feedback:
- Navigation of the Moxy Local interface.
- Facilities of the Moxy Business room were well-received.
- Design interface of the Moxy Local was clunky and unclear.
- Connectivity of the solutions was unclear in the user journey.
BRING IT ON HOME! WHAT ARE YOUR FINAL DELIVERABLES?
After assessing the results of the our usability testing, we realized that we needed more comprehensive users flows to test and present our solution. Unfortunately, we didn’t have the time to create high fidelity prototypes and experience maps within the project’s duration.
To combat this issue, we used high-fidelity mockups and storyboards as an alternative presentation of our final deliverables.
The storyboards were my greatest contribution for this project, which served to outline the user journey, and ultimately communiate the user value of our service solution.
WHAT WERE THE FINAL RESULTS OF YOUR PROJECT? NEXT STEPS?
Even with the visual design limitations, our final presentation of our solution was largely successful. We were able to communicate how both parts of our solutions were essential for enhancing the user’s experience.
As for next steps, I focus on developing the logistics of our design solution. Some key points that I would improve upon if given more time would be in creating more extensive service blueprints and journey maps for The Moxy Business to show how the solution would be built. I would also create a high-fidelity prototype of the Moxy Local platform an how it coincides with the Moxy Business. But most importantly, I would conduct more substantiative usability testing in order to validate our solution.