Zest Bar & Terrace, The Westin Grande Sukhumvit
Before opening an F&B outlet, we go through food concepts, hiring, firing, uniforms, menu, and then finally the actual menu. Getting the menu ‘right’ includes having to find the right fonts, the right paper, colors and covers – the list go on and on.

The use of iPads and other pad devices is now really starting to gain traction as a replacement for traditional menus. At Zest Bar, Westin Grande Sukhumvit though, the hotel combines the use of an iPad with social media ‘Instagram’. Guests can see items through their Instagram account, and can also see other guests’ comments and reviews. The menu is very cleverly laid out in instagram so that multiple images for a ‘whole’ looking, in-tact menu.

One benefit that this brings is that it allows guests to view the menu before arriving at the venue. We believe that today’s travelers possess at least one mobile phone, and have at least one social media account, so this Instagram menu is very convenient for guests and seems to be a hit.

From the operator side, it takes about the same or less effort for when you do a photoshoot for your website. It doesn’t require anything more than that but it makes you different and people will talk about you.  The downside though, is that your guest can see all the comments that have been left by other guests, so paying close attention to your instagram account is definitely a must.

Innovation has its pros and cons. You can’t just be a dinosaur and still hope to get attention from today’s markets – unless you’re running a museum. One must step out of the ‘old zone’, and like Westin Grande Sukhumvit did, get exposure through new channels – and we will talk about it!