A recent article I had published on ‘Debrief Daily’. Check out the website here:
Weddings, honeymoons and anniversaries have long been the stuff of big-spending dreams for the tourism and hospitality industries.
Now Dutch company Divorce Hotel has turned its attention to the other end of the relationship spectrum. Under its concept, couples check-in married – and check-out divorced. The concept is rapidly gaining global traction.
Divorce Hotels offer couples all-inclusive divorce packages that help them end their marriage in the most stress-free way possible. Mediators, accountants and brokers are on hand throughout the weekend ‘getaway’ to ensure a successful split.
The stay is anonymous. Divorcing couples enjoy hotel facilities alongside regular hotel guests to distract from the somewhat bleak experience.
It might sound grim, but the Divorce Hotels website offers a surprisingly upbeat vision, positioning divorce “not only as the end of your marriage…but as the beginning of a new phase in your life”. The company’s founder, Jim Halfens, says the concept of Divorce Hotel is about make a split as positive as possible for those involved.
By providing neutral territory for the divorce, the hotel aims to provide a “professional, fast and affordable service” for the separation, void of interference from “unprofessional family members or friends”.
Most guests reach settlement within 48 hours.
The US based Divorce Hotel, which operates out of the Gideon Putnam Resort and Spa in New York, began offering divorce packages to guests late last year. It was previously known as a premier wedding destination in the picturesque holiday region of Saratoga Springs.
(Note: a place called Lake Desolation, which is a short 20-minute drive away, could provide guests with an additional place to reflect on the weekend’s proceedings.)
The process will set clients back about $5000, and the divorce packages come with a welcome basket brimming with Divorce Hotel branded pens, mousepads and beach bags.
With a TV series already developed for Dutch television, Divorce Hotel has set its sights on American TV. Operators are also looking to move beyond weekend ‘quickie’ divorces to mid-week offerings and multi-couple mediation sessions.
At least when the honeymoon period really is over, couples will have another excuse for a vacation…