In a recent session on The Inner Circle, we spoke with expert hospitality photographers, Christian Giannelli and Beth Campbell, who collectively have over 30 years of experience capturing hotel lifestyle shots. They shared their insights for those on limited budgets, how to capture your property in each season and what to expect when you’ve finally chosen a boutique hotel photographer.

Professional photography for an inn

The Right Photography Can Increase Your ROI

Your long anticipated dream of owning a bed and breakfast or boutique inn has become a reality and after many months of blood, sweat, tears and a lot of money poured into renovations, you are ready for the great reveal. How will your new inn appear to the world? Will all the capital expenses you poured into your investment actually turn a profit? What can you do to ensure it will?

Hire the best photographer you can afford because choosing the right luxury hotel photographer will determine your property’s success.

Living room with fireplace and a view - photography

How to Prioritize Key Shots on a Budget

If you are on a tight budget after spending the lion’s share of your investment on renovations, Christian and Beth suggest you focus on a solid, albeit limited, collection of guest room and bathroom shots, common spaces, and exteriors. They also noted you should prioritize view shots from each guest room to bring in the moody, romantic feel. Your website opener photo (or money shot) is also a key revenue generator and must be in your initial collection. Even if your renovations are not complete at the time of the initial shoot, Beth suggested using the best photos from your starter collection as teasers in your marketing, building excitement for all the fabulous renovations and energy you are bringing to the property.

Exterior photograph by a hotel photographer

Tips For Capturing Seasonal Marketing Images

More than likely, you will need the photographer to come out twice, creating the opportunity for you to capture newly renovated rooms while also highlighting your property in another season! If your first shoot was in the spring or summer, your next shoot should focus on capturing beautiful winter exterior shots. And, if you are fortunate to have a 4-season inn, exteriors are the most important aspect. Best to find a local landscape photographer who can easily come out and get those great shots. Another hot tip is that a local landscape photographer could also take photos of local attractions that may not be available in stock photography.

Breakfast Photo for a luxury inn

How To Prepare for a Professional Hotel Photoshoot

Because excellent, professional hotel photography does not come cheap, you need to know what to expect from your photographer and what they expect from you. Any professional hotel photographer will send you a prop and prep list which you should have accomplished PRIOR to their arrival. This one tip alone will save you considerable time and money. You’ll also end up with more photos because the photographers aren’t spending their time ironing sheets and cleaning windows! Also, be sure to block off rooms for the day of the shoot so you aren’t waiting on guests to leave their room – it’s disruptive to the guest and inconvenient for the photographer. Follow the entire prep list, have all the props ready to go, make sure each room is clean and ready to shoot and you’ll have a solid collection of revenue-generating work-horse photography for years to come.

Join The Inner Circle to See The Full Interview

Professional hotel photography is a critical investment to ensure your new hospitality will be successful. Watch the full interview with Christian and Beth by joining The Inner Circle, a free educational platform with curated content for aspiring and new lodging and event venue property owners. Register online for instant access and become part of our circle!

Disclaimer: The particular properties shown in the photos may not be for sale at this time. Photos are for example purposes only.