Diane Hang Nguyen Highgate Hotels

Highgate’s Diane Hang Nguyen to Speak at HD Expo 2024

Diane Hang Nguyen, director of design at LUCID (Highgate‘s in-house design and construction studio), offers a sneak peek of what’s to come during her session, Leaning Luxury: Defining the Segment, at HD Expo + Conference 2024 in Las Vegas, April 30th–May 2nd.

What’s top of mind for 2024?
Diane Hang Nguyen: Ensuring the highest level of design for our pipeline projects consisting of new builds and renovations/conversations and continuing to represent Highgate as a timeless design leader within the hospitality industry.

What’s the biggest trend you’re seeing in terms of guest expectations?
DHN: Guests want comfortable and functional public areas for remote work—across all properties, from urban to resort, etc.

Any other trends you’re watching?
DHN: Innovation is ever evolving when it comes to design. It is our responsibility as designers to use technology to truly improve the guest experience vs. just dazzle guests. Similarly, sustainability is more than just talking points for us; it’s up to us to do the right thing. In our continued partnership with MindClick and Highgate’s sustainability team, we advise our owners, consultants, partners, and operating teams on the importance of keeping this evolving effort to make a difference on our industry.

Hotels are offering rich amenities and experiences for their communities—not just guests. We’re doing more project selections and sites for hotels and buildings with rich history and cultural significance. In fact, when it comes to design it’s not all about the new, or the flashy, or all of the bells and whistles. For us, it’s about what’s lasting and what’s comfortable. It’s the ability to deliver timeless design—the luxury of enough.

Kimpton Hotel Theta New York

Kimpton Hotel Theta, designed by LUCID in collaboration with Crème

What Highgate projects should we look forward to?
DHN: We’re looking forward to the F&B outlets coming to the Kimpton Hotel Theta and Romer Hell’s Kitchen in New York: Bar Sprezzatura (designed by Crème) and So&So’s (designed by Goodrich). The IndiDesign-crafted Romer House will be opening in Waikiki this summer following the successful openings of Romer Hell’s Kitchen and Romer Waikiki at the Ambassador. The Monterey Tides Hotel in California is being completely redeveloped and reimagined by IndiDesign, also reopening this summer, and the Bellevue Hotel in Philadelphia (a collaboration between Studio Machado, Ward & Gray, and Grace Song Studio) is opening in late 2024.

What’s your view on the state of hospitality?
DHN: We are incredibly optimistic! There is so much momentum and excitement from both owners and brands to get more projects refreshed or greenlit. There is tremendous opportunity.

Keys to successful project partnerships?
DHN: For us, it’s all about finding the right collaborators for the right projects with great reputations and references. From the start, we aim to establish transparency and open dialogue to achieve collective goals together.

How do you see your company evolving?
DHN: We’re expanding into more select-service new builds and expanding our management contracts into condo hotels. F&B will continue to be a huge focus for Highgate given our partnership with TableOne. We have several new venues across the country opening this year. We are also developing more in Europe and Mexico.

Hear more from Nguyen at HD Expo + Conference:
Leaning Luxury: Defining the Segment

Wednesday, May 1st, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Location: Social Hub

Romer Hell’s Kitchen features public spaces crafted by Goodrich

More from HD:
AvroKO Designs the Jay Hotel in San Francisco
What I’ve Learned Podcast: Mario Tricoci, Aparium Hotel Group
Meet the 2024 HD Women in Design Award Recipients

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