Checking-in to the Future of Luxury Travel

Checking-in To The Future Of Luxury Travel

16 May, 2016

Checking-in to the Future of Luxury Travel

World s biggest luxury hotel brand teams up with renowned futurist to predict the future of luxury travel

IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group), one of the world s leading hotel companies announces that its InterContinental Hotels & Resorts brand has sought the expertise of Fortune 500 Futurist, Faith Popcorn. The collaboration comes as the InterContinental brand celebrates 70 years of pioneering luxury travel and looks ahead to the next 70 years. Looking at luxury travel trends of the future, Faith focused specifically on the guest experience, service, destinations as well as hotel design. She believes that Virtual Reality (VR) escapism and immersive brand experiences will shape service and guest experiences in the future of luxury travel:

  • Clanning Experiences: VR technology will enable real-time sharing of adventure and luxury among friends or family who are spread around the world. It will mean that guests and their loved ones can enjoy simulated adventures in real-time, whether it be a walk through the Serengeti or an ocean swim with extinct marine life.
  • Customised Wardrobes: Hotels will partner with fashion brands to sponsor guests in-room wardrobes, complete with 3D printed designer clothing. Wardrobes will be customised to suit personal taste based on online shopping habits, size and local weather conditions.
  • Fantasy Escapes: Luxury as we know it today will become so accessible that consumers will seek more extreme and un-attainable experiences. Hotels will provide guests with game-like environments for fantasy escapes, which could involve living out danger in a safe environment.

Described as The Trend Oracle , Faith Popcorn has worked with leading Fortune 500 companies to help them accurately predict consumer trends.

With a documented 95% accuracy rate, InterContinental Hotels & Resorts teamed up with Faith as part of the brand s ongoing commitment to remain at the forefront of luxury travel.

Futurist Faith Popcorn commented: In envisioning with InterContinental Hotel & Resorts to mark their 70-year anniversary, we ve forecast what the future holds for luxury travel. Consumers will be craving immersive experiences which will allow them to indulge in luxury in both a physical and a virtual sense. By harnessing Virtual Reality (VR) and the constant flow of personal likes, dislikes and bio-data, hotels will be able to provide guests with once-in-a-lifetime experiences seamlessly and spontaneously or so it will seem.

By 2086, as space itself becomes the ultimate luxury, VR will evolve interior design so that it can be tailored by guests, and luxury travel will offer access to never-before-explored locations and immersive experiences:

  • Building Down: With 70% of the world s population set to be urban by 2050, the design and structure of luxury hotels will change dramatically with brands set to adopt new architectural solutions such as building down , to fit to the changing landscape.
  • Immersive Spaces: Guests will be able to design spaces specifically tailored to their personal aesthetics and needs. From customisable holographic wall art to fully adjustable interior design, guests will be treated to state of the art facilities to ensure maximum satisfaction and relaxation.
  • World Experience: Different wings or rooms in hotels will be created to offer guests a taste of cultural experiences from different corners of the world from golden Caribbean beaches to white blanket ski slopes, all located in the same hotel.

In order to continue creating new experiences for guests that elevate the everyday, InterContinental Hotels & Resorts have teamed up with world famous interior designer specializing in luxury hotel design, Tara Bernerd, for the development of the brand s new design philosophy.

Commenting on the future of luxury design in hotels Tara Bernerd said:

InterContinental Hotels & Resorts are constantly looking to evolve their interiors and aesthetic to make their properties more unique and luxurious for guests. Interior architecture and design play a very powerful part of a guest s experience and I am delighted to be supporting InterContinental Hotels & Resorts on their new design philosophy that will hope to see them continue to push the boundaries of luxury travel into the future.

InterContinental Hotel & Resorts is set to break new territory once again, with the development of the Songjiang Quarry Hotel in China. The hotel is set to be built in a 90m deep quarry outside of Shanghai. Boasting cascading waterfalls, extreme sport facilities such as bungee jumping and rock climbing, underwater bedrooms and cutting-edge conference facilities, it is set to be the greenest hotel ever built, with plans to power the luxury resort with geothermal and solar energy.

Simon Scoot, VP Global Brand Strategy at InterContinental Hotels & Resorts added:

Our collaboration with Faith Popcorn and partnership with Tara Bernerd further ensures the InterContinental brand remains at the forefront of luxury travel. Innovation and pioneering spirit is in the InterContinental brand s DNA. Since the launch of the brand in 1946, followed by the opening of the first hotel in Belem, Brazil, InterContinental Hotels & Resorts opened the gateway to a whole new world of glamour and discovery for a jet-set generation.

70 years on, as global travel has transformed, the InterContinental brand has evolved and adapted with it.

With nine iconic openings in the last year including new hotels in London, Dubai, and Chennai, and the upcoming opening of InterContinental Beijing Sanlitun later this year, as well as the re-opening of the iconic InterContinental New York Barclay, the brand continues to build its luxury legacy.


For further press information please contact:

Jovana Lakcevic:

+44 (0) 1895 512 786

About IHG

IHG (InterContinental Hotels Group)3 LON:IHG, NYSE:IHG (ADRs) is a global organisation with a broad portfolio of hotel brands, including InterContinental Hotels & Resorts4, Kimpton Hotels & Restaurants5, HUALUXE Hotels and Resorts6, Crowne Plaza Hotels & Resorts7, Hotel Indigo 8, EVEN Hotels9, Discount Holidays © Holiday Inn Hotels & Resorts10, Discount Holidays © Holiday Inn Express 11, Staybridge Suites 12 and Candlewood Suites 13. IHG franchises, leases, manages or owns more than 5,000 hotels and nearly 742,000 guest rooms in almost 100 countries, with nearly 1,400 hotels in its development pipeline. IHG also manages IHG Rewards Club14, the world s first and largest hotel loyalty programme, with nearly 94 million members worldwide.

InterContinental Hotels Group PLC15 is the Group s holding company and is incorporated in Great Britain and registered in England and Wales. More than 350,000 people work across IHG s hotels and corporate offices globally. Visit www.ihg.com16 for hotel information and reservations andwww.ihgrewardsclub.com17 for more on IHG Rewards Club.

For our latest news, visit: and follow us on social media at:, and Each year, IHG publishes the IHG Trends Report, which looks at key trends shaping the consumer landscape. For more information visit

About Faith Popcorn

Best-selling author of The Popcorn Report, Clicking, EVEolution, Dictionary of the Future and the upcoming, Popcorn Report 2020: A Leap of Faith. Faith Popcorn is a world renowned Futurist and founder and CEO of Faith Popcorn s BrainReserve, the Trend-based future-focused marketing consultancy she established in 1974. The New York Times has called her The Trend Oracle,” Fortune Magazine named her, The Nostradamus of Marketing,” and she is recognized as America s foremost Trend expert. With a documented 95% accuracy rate, Faith predicted the demand for fresh foods and four-wheel drives. She was the first to anticipate the explosive growth of home delivery, home businesses and home shopping.

Additionally, she predicted the rise of Social Media. Her FutureView, which focuses on how Trends are affecting consumer lifestyles, has been presented to thousands of audiences across the globe.

About Tara Bernerd & Partners

Tara Bernerd & Partners is a leading international interior architecture and design practice specialising in luxury hospitality. Tara and her team of highly-experienced architects and designers have worked with a number of the world s leading hotel brands including Four Seasons, Thompson Hotels, Starwood and SIXTY Hotels. The practice distinguishes itself through its point-of-view to the future of travel and the ever-evolving experience of the luxury hotel patron. Tara s elevated aesthetic vision has won the practice flagship projects in London, New York, Miami and Los Angeles and beyond.

This year, Tara takes on the additional role of lead design consultant to InterContinental Hotels Group regarding the creative redesign of the brand and its vision for the future of over 180 InterContinental Hotels & Resorts it operates globally.

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Reissues: Life On Mars?

Reissues: Life On Mars?

Given Lorde s tribute to Bowie at the BRIT Awards, it feels like the right time to revive this grand dame.

It was one of the book revisions that took seemingly forever to finish, and then it wound up being not that different from the blog entry. Just a touch more concise, I suppose, and a few new quotes and such. I ve swapped in the book s paragraphs on the chords, etc., as the original entry was clunky.

If you want to see the warts-and-all version, it s back here1.

Originally posted on 23 March 2010, it s Life On Mars?

Life On Mars?
Life On Mars? (live, 1972).
Life On Mars? (rehearsal, 1976).
Life On Mars? (Tonight Show, 1980).
Life On Mars? (live, 1983).
Life On Mars? (broadcast, 1999).
Life On Mars? (Net Aid, 1999).
Life On Mars? (VH1 Storytellers, 1999).
Life On Mars? (Glastonbury, 2000).
Life On Mars? (Parkinson, 2002).
Life On Mars? (live, 2005).
Life On Mars (The Bad Plus, 2007).
Life on Mars? (Lorde, 2016).234567891011121314

This song was so easy. Being young was easy. A really beautiful day in the park, sitting on the steps of the bandstand. Sailors bap-bap-bap-bap-baaa-bap. An anomic (not a gnomic ) heroine. Middle-class ecstasy. I took a walk to Beckenham High Street to catch a bus to Lewisham to buy shoes and shirts but couldn t get the riff out of my head. Jumped off two stops into the ride and more or less loped back to the house up on Southend Road.

Workspace was a big empty room with a chaise lounge; a bargain-price art nouveau screen ( William Morris, so I told anyone who asked); a huge overflowing freestanding ashtray and a grand piano. Little else.

I started working it out on the piano and had the whole lyric and melody finished by late afternoon. Nice.

David Bowie on Life on Mars, 15 2008. Nice indeed. Life on Mars?, as fits its cinematic lyric, has become the Citizen Kane of Bowie songs the youthful masterpiece, the epic, the best thing he ever did. Popular television shows have been named after it, people have gotten married to it.

It (quite literally) is Bowie s own version of My Way longtime readers may recall Bowie s chrisom child Even a Fool Learns to Love, 16 his attempt to write English lyrics for Claude Fran ois Comme d Habitude. Bowie s translation was trumped by Paul Anka s, which turned Fran ois stoic Gallic lyric into a grandiose self-assessment, perfect for Frank Sinatra s late imperial phase. Bowie was nettled by the snub though, and a few years later he rewrote the song as Life On Mars? brazen enough in his theft that he wrote Inspired by Frankie on the LP cover.

An anomic heroine

A sullen teenage girl goes to the movies, gets stood up by her friend and dejectedly takes her seat. She s the subject of the song, not the typical rock n roll object of beauty or lust or distraction. In a few lines, Bowie captures a teenager s life, its slights, its cosmic sense of injustice, its losing war against tedium, its restlessness (he starts nearly every line with a conjunction), its uneasy cynicism. The movie screen flickers to life, showers the girl with images. The song becomes the screen, its pre-chorus is an extended trailer soaring strings, thunderous piano, ascending chords for the refrain, one of the most shameless, gorgeous melodies he ever wrote.

And the song also captures a teenager s ability to suddenly and completely lose themselves in art, to a degree we can never quite do again. It s what happens in the song as well. Bowie constructs an 8-bar bridge designed to build anticipation in the listener the strings, the pounding piano, the rising chords in each new bar and then makes good on his promise: the chorus, with Bowie vaulting nearly an octave to a high B-flat and ending with another high Bb, held for a brief eternity. The careful imagery and the intricate design of the first verse its movie theater setting, its mousy heroine vanishes in the second, replaced by a string of jokes ( Mickey Mouse has grown up a cow made Trevor Bolder and Woody Woodmansey crack up in the studio), esoteric references and gibberish ( my mother, my dogs and clowns ). A cynic would argue that Bowie didn t have a second verse and just free-associated in the studio voice of 2016: a cynic would be partially wrong, as there were further verses written, but Bowie rewrote them at some point before recording; a more charitable interpretation is that the second verse is from the point of view of the movie screen itself. Blank and fecund, the screen offers nothing but a string of disconnected, vivid, absurd images: the masses scurrying from Ibiza to the Norfolk Broads (from a hip summer Discount Holidays © holiday destination to an old-fashioned one17), Mickey Mouse, Alley Oop 18 (from which Bowie stole the look at those cavemen go line ), crooked cops and honest robbers.

It could be a curse on modern life, in which a discontented girl is stunned into silence by colors and noise, or it could argue that even the basest pleasures have nobility in them. I d say Life on Mars? turns out to be a love song after all the girl in the stalls, the screen providing her cheap dreams, and the song that unites them.

Reissues: Life On Mars?

Striking for fame

There is an art to the building up of suspense. Tom Stoppard, Rosenkrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead.

It starts with a cold opening a single piano note, a rest, two sung notes to kick-start the verse ( It s a/god-awful ), the latter becoming a rhythmic motif ( But her/friend is , She could/spit ). A harmony vocal appears, a third below Bowie s lead; Bolder deepens sunken dream with a bass fill. By the pre-chorus, a sense of movement has become relentless. All of its players are conscripted: strings and bass slam downbeats; Rick Wakeman s piano drums out chords; Bowie vaults from a D to a high B-flat ( fo-cus on/SAI-LORS ) as a last flourish. Yet the refrain plays another game of suspense. After his opening gymnastic, Bowie feigns as if he s losing strength, as he hits the next Bb briefly ( OH man ) and his next leap is a shorter interval, from E to B ( law-man ). It s all a ruse: his final jump is his grandest holding a three-bars-long Bb on MARS! The whole song is a clockwork.

Everything has led up to this glorious indulgence. All that s left to do is replay the whole sequence and close with fireworks. There s a parallel game in the song s structure. The verses are comfortably in F major, with a C7 chord ( told her to go ) shuttling back home to F ( but her friend ) but at the close, a now-C9 chord jarringly leads to A-flat chords ( lived it ten times ). The pre-chorus becomes a battle for control between waning F major and B-flat, which assures its victory with a triumphant B-flat that opens the refrain as Bowie leaps to sing its root note. Bolder s bass prepares the ear: in the pre-chorus, his rising chromatic line (inching up from Eb to E, from F to Gb) heralds the transition; in the refrain he tacks things down, keeping to the roots of the newly-established Bb key.

Ronson s cascading string arrangement was based in part on the descending bassline that Bolder had worked out in rehearsals, while in turn Woodmansey s drums respond to the strings he does some tympani-like fills to match the staccato string bursts, and even ends the track by quoting the tympani of Strauss Also Sprach Zarathustra (a Bowie perennial by this point similar tributes are in Width of a Circle and The Supermen ). Wakeman, playing the same piano that Paul McCartney used for Hey Jude, offers a secondary melody line for much of the verses. Ah, you can spend hours on the details: the lovely double-recorder accompaniment in the second verse; or Ronson s gorgeous,vibrato-filled guitar solo that links the chorus and the verse.

Life on Mars? naturally gets a Hollywood ending: sweeping strings, the 2001 drum fanfare and a fadeout. But we still hear Wakeman s piano in the distance, playing a bit of his chorus line, until a phone rings, someone mutters and we re left awake and alone. Recorded June-July 1971; released as a single by RCA in June 1973 (RCA 2316; it hit #3 in the UK, helped by the Mick Rock promo).

While a huge hit in the UK, it was never that popular in America, oddly enough. Bowie performed it occasionally during the Ziggy tours of 72- 73 and in 76 and then retired it until a Tonight Show performance on 5 September 1980 that has, for me, Bowie s finest vocal for the song. Also revived in 1983, 1990 and the last tours. It s been regularly covered over the years, even by Barbra Streisand. The version by The Bad Plus (from Prog19) is highly recommended. Top: The Nottingham Odeon,20 1971.

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  1. ^ back here (
  2. ^ Life On Mars? (
  3. ^ Life On Mars? (live, 1972). (
  4. ^ Life On Mars? (rehearsal, 1976). (
  5. ^ Life On Mars? (Tonight Show, 1980). (
  6. ^ Life On Mars? (live, 1983). (
  7. ^ Life On Mars? (broadcast, 1999). (
  8. ^ Life On Mars? (Net Aid, 1999). (
  9. ^ Life On Mars? (VH1 Storytellers, 1999). (
  10. ^ Life On Mars? (Glastonbury, 2000). (
  11. ^ Life On Mars? (Parkinson, 2002). (
  12. ^ Life On Mars? (live, 2005). (
  13. ^ Life On Mars (The Bad Plus, 2007). (
  14. ^ Life on Mars? (Lorde, 2016). (
  15. ^ Life on Mars, (
  16. ^ Even a Fool Learns to Love, (
  17. ^ old-fashioned one (
  18. ^ Alley Oop (
  19. ^ Prog (
  20. ^ Nottingham Odeon, (
  21. ^ Hunky Dory: 1971 (
  22. ^ RSS 2.0 (
  23. ^ (