Hotels tap DJs, Dance Music

Since the first Hôtel Costes CD appeared in 1999, hotel companies have grown out of DJ mixed music (Buddha Bar, Hard Rock Café).

More and more hotel brands seem to be looking to incorporate performances with the hottest DJs or else, align themselves with the music industry as part of their overall marketing strategy.

WHO is a hotel’s most important employee? The general manager, concierge, or chef might come to mind. But at many newer, hot properties, especially boutique hotels aiming for a younger crowd, the answer could be completely different: the DJ.


• Besides brand association and the hip factor, these new creative alliances provide original website/social media content for a brand.

• With the ever-growing importance of digital content, hotels can then produce original, sharable social media material (pre- and post-event) that reaches a certain demographic. The most successful campaigns live on for months after their actual date.

• The music industry is driven through social media, and hotels that aligned with an artist may break the brand into new markets and a whole new group of consumers – the iPod generation.

W Hotels has been an industry leader – their Global Music Director’s role is solely to “translate the W vision into aural, sonic identity and help address that identity throughout the world.” What translates in Austin may not translate in Hong Kong, and a high-touch, highly musical market requires a careful finesse in selecting the music played in the lounges, lobbies, elevators and rooms. They were also the first hotel company to burn studios DJ Lab, a program that preened emerging DJs and sent them on a world tour, as well as the Symmetry concert series, which showcases what’s new and next in music by way of intimate performances at W Hotels.

In a similar vein, Ultra Records recently started a joint record label with Wynn’s clubs that will make compilation albums and push the music to hotel guests.  Wynn’s four nightclubs have signed 34 DJs to exclusive residencies, and the hotel’s deal with Ultra will involve online video from the clubs, albums released under the name Ultra/Wynn, and even a hotel TV channel. Throughout its casino, Wynn promotes Ultra acts on stanchions and sells Deadmau5 merchandise like T-shirts, CDs and “mau5 ears.”

D.J. Calvin Harris performing at the Encore Beach Club in Las Vegas


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