News 24.02.2023

Need to Know

Luxury hotels form an opulent space in Doha, Kering to appoint a brand safety chief, US teen girls’ mental health crisis and Marta Indeka’s Foresight Friday.

Fairmont and Raffles open opulent hybrid hotel in Doha

Fairmont Doha and Raffles in the Katara Towers, Doha
Fairmont Doha and Raffles in the Katara Towers, Doha
Fairmont Doha and Raffles in the Katara Towers, Doha
Fairmont Doha and Raffles in the Katara Towers, Doha

Qatar – Global hospitality brands Fairmont and Raffles are hyper-charging the luxury stay in Doha with a new hybrid hotel. The Fairmont Doha and Raffles Doha, housed in the landmark Katara Towers, operate as two independent five-star hotels, with guests using facilities across both.

Fairmont’s hotel found inspiration in luxury mega yachts’ interiors and specialises in premium health, recovery from sports injuries, physiotherapy and fitness spaces. It is home to Qatar’s biggest climbing wall, largest gym and the world’s tallest chandelier. Guests can also attend yoga, boxing and Pilates classes conducted by master athletes.

Raffles Doha is an all-suite facility with opulent decor inspired by desert dunes falconry. The luxury hotel features a private barber, make-up studios, cinemas, beverage cellars, virtual reality spaces, a scent library created by French perfume house Compoz, and a secret book library in its Blue Cigar lounge that stocks rare and first editions.

This hybrid hospitality space shared between two portfolio brands owned by Accor shows how businesses of tomorrow can take Neo-collectivism a step further. The Fairmont Doha and Raffles Doha also strengthen the market for luxury bespoke experiences that we highlighted in Guilded Luxury.

Strategic opportunity

Luxury hospitality players should adopt a bolder approach to shared spaces and next-door competition allowing their high-net-worth individual clientele to create their own unique stays.

Kering to name brand safety chief after Balenciaga ad mayhem

France – Kering, the luxury conglomerate that owns Gucci, Saint Laurent and Balenciaga, among others, has announced it is to appoint a brand safety chief. This decision follows the global outrage and sales drop caused by a viral Balenciaga ad campaign in 2022 featuring children holding teddy bear bags covered in studs and fetish harnesses.

The new brand safety executive will review advertising campaigns and question how they would be perceived and criticised online. Several recent PR crises have hit sales at Balenciaga and Dolce & Gabbana. At the same time, Adidas, which cut ties with Kanye West over antisemitic comments, expects to lose £1bn ($1.3bn, €1.2bn) in revenue this year as it cannot sell the designer’s Yeezy clothing and shoes.

In The Paralysis Paradox, we identified how brands, businesses and organisational CEOs must embrace liability by becoming accountable for and taking ownership of existential crises, acknowledging uncertainty and embracing transparency.

Kering, France

Strategic opportunity

Ethics and values can make or break sales, even for iconic brands; hence, the need for more sensitivity proofreaders, consultants and a substantial diversity and inclusion recruitment strategy.

Foresight Friday: Marta Indeka, foresight analyst

Carolina Carballo for The Future Laboratory Carolina Carballo for The Future Laboratory

The Future Laboratory team offer an end-of-week snapshot of the topics, issues, ideas and virals that we’re talking about. This week, LS:N Global’s foresight analyst Marta Indeka shares her favourite fashion moments and social media rabbit holes.

: Seen in Schön! and the intriguing The New Face project, I have my eyes on AI-generated futuristic faceless silhouettes – is it Daft Punk’s legacy or the desire to be anonymous online?

: Sex sells (again). Phallic designs at JW Anderson, a mountain of Durex condoms at the Diesel show and Isamaya Ffrench’s penis-shaped lipstick are only a few examples

: Between Rodarte’s shimmery tablescape and di(vision)’s flying table set-up – lavish dinner parties are in fashion

: Speaking of food and style, I can’t stop watching succubus chic icon Gabbriette’s messy, playful and weirdly addictive cooking videos. For more unhinged food content, embrace rat snacks, aka the goblin-mode anti-aspirational nibbles going viral

: Fashion week aside, most of my screen time was spent on the depth of Wikipedia's Instagram for a refreshing shot of trivia

Quote of the week

‘This fashion show is our manifestation of will. This is the fulfilment of our strength and resilience. We will never destroy, but we will always create’

Ukrainian designer Ivan Frolov, after showing at London Fashion Week

Stat: American teenage girls face rampant mental health crisis

Happy Nation, US Happy Nation, US

US – After studying a nationally representative sample of 17,232 public and private high school students in the US in 2021, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a worrying Youth Risk Behaviour Survey. According to the CDC, 57% of teen girls (nearly three in five) reported feeling persistently sad or hopeless’ in the previous year. Some 30% said they had seriously considered suicide, an increase of 60% compared to a similar survey conducted in 2011.

Violence is also rising, with almost one in five teenage girls saying they experienced sexual violence in the past year. ‘Our teenage girls are suffering through an overwhelming wave of violence and trauma, and it’s affecting their mental health,’ said Kathleen Ethier, director of the CDC’s Division of Adolescent and School Health.

Our Gen Z Digital Wellness Market coverage highlighted how young people are among the most concerned about mental health and seeking alternative ways to learn, nurture and heal.

Strategic opportunity

Any organisation targeting a female Gen Z audience should consider more sensitivity training to avoid triggering past and current traumatic experiences or feelings of despair. The mental healthcare market will keep growing, but Gen Z expect and need more than mindfulness apps and virtual therapy providers.

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