As you’re reading this, we’re busy determining which are the best hotels in America. The decision will be based on over 175 million reviews—and because we’re a hotel metasearch and therefore an independent entity, you know our selection will be unbiased and accurate. This fall, we’ll reveal in the annual trivago Awards blog post who represents the best of the best in American hospitality.

The top hotels in each of our award categories serve as a role model for the industry and an inspiration to others in providing exceptional service, excellent value, and extraordinary overall customer experience.

Stay tuned, because the winners of this year’s trivago Awards will be announced on November 14th.

In the meantime, you can learn about the different categories open to American hotels and what qualifies them for consideration by reading on below.

3-Star, 4-Star, and 5-Star Hotels

Why do these categories matter? Good hotels offer breakfast; award-winning hotels offer incredible breakfasts that guests hunger for long after they’ve checked out. But you need more than a tantalizing morning buffet to be considered the best hotel of your classification. Award-winning hotels—no matter their star rating—also excel at providing value for money, attractive rooms, and top-notch service across all guest touch points.

We’ll look at all the reviews that mention these aspects and recognize the 3-, 4-, and 5-star hotels that had this year’s guests raving about them the most.

What do award-winning hotels do: They go above and beyond the usual front desk meet-and-greet by empowering their staff to act in the best interests of the guests—always.

They offer their guests every experience-enhancing, low-cost perk and service they can. For example, a free late check-out or a welcome drink. And they’re always looking to up their game.

And because in this business appearances count for a lot, the best 3-, 4-, and 5-star hotels also look polished and have a unique style.

How can I improve my hotel offerings? Breakfast is the first and most important meal of the day; the best hotels make sure it’s also the most hearty, delicious, and memorable. Don’t just feed your guests first thing in the morning—really treat them, and they’ll love you for it.

If you’re looking for ideas on how to offer more value for money, check out this blog post. It’s full of suggestions on how to surprise and delight guest and receive glowing 4- and 5-star reviews as a result.

Next, when it comes to improving the look of your rooms, make sure they’re clean and comfortable. Then you can start investing in extras that will make them more attractive to guests.

If budget is an issue but you desperately want to give your rooms a visual update, try these tips.

Lastly, don’t forget to increase overall satisfaction by putting yourself in the guests’ shoes and anticipating their needs. You’ll start to notice little ways to improve your hotel that make a big impact.

Alternative Accommodations

Why does this category matter? Sometimes people want to get away and stay someplace a little less conventional, a little less traditional or mainstream. Travelers now live for experiences and unique moments more than ever. They’ve got their sights set on places and accommodations that will earn them bragging rights among friends, family, and social media connections.

What do award-winning hotels do: Top hotels competing for the trivago Awards in this category, regardless of whether they’re independent or part of a chain, understand the importance of standing out.  They focus on their USP (unique selling point) and put it at the forefront of all their marketing activities. Being “alternative” could mean anything from changing up room concepts to providing unique itineraries, but whatever it is that makes these accommodations unlike any other in the industry, they’re not afraid to provide travelers with a singular experience.

How can I improve my hotel offerings? If you have a vacation rental property, a bed and breakfast, or any other kind of alternative accommodations, make the unique element that sets you apart your core focus. Enhance the benefits that only your type of property can offer by investing in them. Look at the specific lifestyle that your accommodations support to identify and prioritize areas of improvement. Then give the world a glimpse into the magical moments guests can expect from such a unique stay (and be sure to deliver them) by showcasing them with your digital marketing.

Is there a hotel that you consider to be a winner when it comes to the above categories? Is there another category that you’d like us to consider next year? Let us know in the comments below.

Judson Moore

Judson L Moore has spent the last decade blogging about his experiences ranging from being a concert promoter with some of the biggest names in American music, to working in Central Asia on-boarding journalists to the internet. Finding his home at trivago, he is now part of the Hotel Relations team, which connects with hoteliers worldwide through its core product, trivago Hotel Manager (tHM).

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