Popular travel website Kayak is diving into the waters of real estate.
The online search engine, founded in 2004, will unveil its first boutique hotel in Miami Beach, Florida, this spring. Borne from the company’s push to “reimagine the in-travel experience,” the hotel will boast a number of innovations including contactless digital check-ins and tech-focused room amenities, such as Apple TVs and Marshall speakers. It’s being developed in partnership with Life House, a lifestyle-centric hotel startup.
The resort will also house an Eastern Mediterranean restaurant, Layla, which will feature technology from Kayak’s sister brand OpenTable, a dining reservations website.
“Our Miami Beach property will deepen our knowledge of hospitality and showcase our growing capabilities,” Kayak CEO Steve Hafner said in a statement. According to the company, the resort will serve as a design lab of sorts, where it will refine its hospitality technology. To do so, it’s tapping insights gleaned from its massive search engine business, leveraging consumer and pricing data from the billions of travel queries it receives each year.
Kayak Miami Beach is scheduled to debut a year after the coronavirus pandemic devastated the travel economy, closing borders and curbing tourism worldwide. It also builds on a recent trend in recreation-based companies venturing into hospitality: In 2019, fitness and spa chain Equinox unveiled its first luxury hotel in New York.
This post has been updated to reflect Life House’s role.