Dark hospitality: Hotels as places for the end of life | Intellect Skip to content
Volume 5, Issue 2-3
  • ISSN: 2042-7913
  • E-ISSN: 2042-7921



This article explores through the concept of dark hospitality why some people choose to die in a hotel, rather than at home, in a hospice or a hospital. Through in-depth interviews with hotel managers and junior staff at four luxury city hotels, this issue was explored from the perspective of ordinary hotel guests, all of whom had a longterm relationship with the hotel where they died. The hotel staff suggested that the reasons why some people choose to die in a hotel include loneliness, fear and minimizing emotional distress for their friends and relatives. The impact of managing such guests is also investigated and the results suggest that although managers do care about the impact on the reputation of the hotel, they, along with their staff, are very much affected emotionally by these types of planned deaths. The suggestion emerged from the interviews that with an increasing ageing population, perhaps in the not-too-distant future, the ‘hospice hotel’ could emerge as a new commercial hospitality product.


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  • Article Type: Article
Keyword(s): bereavement; death; future markets; guests; hospices; hotels
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