What Is a Serviced Apartment? Types, Benefits and Prices

What Is a Serviced Apartment? Types, Benefits and Prices

What Is a Serviced Apartment? Types, Benefits and Prices
9th February 2023

What is a Serviced Apartment?

A serviced apartment is self-contained, fully furnished temporary accommodation, offering all the comforts of a home. Bookable on a night-by-night basis, they are a complete accommodation solution. With one or more bedrooms, a fully equipped kitchen, living area and at least one bathroom, serviced apartments provide everything guests could need during their stay.

Most serviced apartments also include internet access, laundry facilities, linen, and towels. The ‘service’ of a serviced apartment refers to housekeeping services that are provided at least once a week as standard.

Serviced apartments are self-sufficient enough to provide autonomy and lifestyle flexibility for guests, but many also offer services and amenities usually found in hotels like 24-hour receptions, gyms, pools, restaurants and communal areas.

There are several different types of serviced apartment giving them broad appeal to different types and demographics of traveller. Below is our ultimate guide to comprehensively answer the question - just what is a serviced apartment? We examine the many different types of serviced apartments on offer and the benefits and features which make them the ideal temporary accommodation solution.

What Different Types of Serviced Apartments Are There?

Open-plan kitchen in a serviced apartment
Serviced apartments are a complete accommodation solution

Serviced apartments can either be managed on- or off-site – both offer many different benefits

Serviced apartments are either managed on-site or off-site. An on-site managed serviced apartment will usually feature a reception and property manager. An off-site managed serviced apartment has no staff on-site – guests self-check in and keys are usually collected from a safety deposit box. Both types of management have their advantages; on-site management ensures guests have staff close by to assist with issues or requests, while off-site management provides autonomy and independence like living in your own home.

Aparthotels blend the benefits of serviced apartments and hotels together in one package

An aparthotel is not simply a property with on-site management, they also include many of the facilities typically associated with a hotel. As well as a reception and property manager, properties can include a swimming pool, gym, bar and concierge services. This type of serviced apartment is best for those looking for the privacy and flexibility of a serviced apartment but with the additional services found in a hotel.

Residential serviced apartments are ideal for long-term assignees wanting a more permanent base

Residential style serviced apartments
Serviced apartments housed in residential properties are ideal for those relocating to a new city

Some serviced apartments are in predominantly residential properties, and will often be equipped similarly to the other apartments in the property. This type of serviced apartment is often chosen for relocation and long-term assignees who will benefit from a less transient environment. For those relocating to a new area, staying in a residential serviced apartment provides the opportunity to experience what it’s like to live in a certain location before committing to long-term accommodation. Long-term assignees (and nomadic travellers or those with a remote working lifestyle) also benefit from this apartment type as they’re surrounded by residents opposed to guests who are staying on a short-term basis, meaning they can enjoy a more neighbourly or community environment.

Single property serviced apartments offer total autonomy as if living at home

Serviced apartments in a single property offer ultimate privacy and autonomy. In some cases, entire houses are available to book, although they’re still referred to as a serviced apartment. This type of accommodation is mostly found on homestay brands such as Airbnb but, unlike on those websites, serviced apartments in the SilverDoor portfolio meet stringent health and safety standards ensuring you have a safe and enjoyable stay.

What’s Included in a Serviced Apartment?

Fully equipped kitchens in each apartment allow guests to cook at their own convenience

Having private kitchen facilities is one of the greatest advantages of staying in a serviced apartment. It gives guests the flexibility of choosing whether to eat out or prepare food in comfort and convenience. A hob and kitchenware like pots, pans, crockery and cutlery come as standard while many apartments have fully fitted kitchens with a full oven and a comprehensive range of cooking implements.

Serviced apartments are on average 30% bigger than hotel rooms and provide separate living spaces

Serviced Apartment vs Hotel size comparison
Even a studio apartment offers more space, additional cooking facilities, and better defined spaces than a hotel - ideal for making the most of a corporate stay

Serviced apartments feature separate living spaces for eating, working, exercising or entertaining guests. In fact, serviced apartments have on average 30% more space than a hotel room allowing guests to maintain much of the same healthy routines as they would at home. Dining tables allow you eat dinner without being propped up in bed and you can watch television from the comfort of a sofa. Many serviced apartments are large enough to hold meetings or have guests over for dinner without feeling cramped.

Choose from multiple apartment types to accommodate travelling in a group or with family

Serviced apartments are available in a variety of configurations from studio apartments to five-bedroom apartments. Serviced apartments with multiple bedrooms are great value when travelling in a group as you needn’t book separate hotel rooms. Corporates travelling with family also benefit as they’re able to stay together in one serviced apartment and have plenty of space for children.

Additional on-site amenities are an added luxury in some serviced apartment properties

Some of our serviced apartments have access to on-site amenities such as restaurants, cafés and shops. In combination with private kitchen facilities, these added perks provide guests with more choice when it comes to mealtimes. If guests are in a rush or just want something low-key, they can use their own private kitchen. Then, if guests are meeting friends and colleagues, or just fancy something special, they can take advantage of on-site amenities.

Rooftop swimming pool with impressive view
Some serviced apartment properties have access to on-site amenities such as a swimming pool

On-site facilities mean guests don’t need to compromise their usual routines

For business travellers with personal fitness in mind, some of our apartments (usually aparthotels), feature on-site leisure facilities. It's quite common to find a gym on-site with cardiovascular equipment and weights, but depending on the property, some also feature swimming pools, saunas, spas and yoga rooms.

Serviced apartments have everything else you might need, too

A serviced apartment can include a washing machine and tumble drier, dishwasher, desk space, generous wardrobes and storage, and Wi-Fi is standard (in some global locations, it may be chargeable). Similarly, many apartments feature a Smart Tv and some offer on-site parking and electrical vehicle charging points.

READ: Personalising the serviced apartment experience

How Are Serviced Apartments Priced?

Length of stay savings graph
Though rates vary from city to city, the savings pattern demonstrated by the above graph remains consistent when booking serviced apartments compared with hotels

Serviced apartment rates typically get lower as the length of stay increases, as the graph shows. For longer or group stays, lower rates can often be negotiated and VAT in the UK is only levied at 20% for the first 28 days. The VAT rate for subsequent days is applied only to 20% of the rate (in effect, a VAT of 4% is charged on the whole rate after the first 28 days).

Who Should Stay in a Serviced Apartment?

The capacity to settle in a homelike environment, come and go according to your own schedule, comfortably work, and enjoy the comfort of personal space make serviced apartments especially popular with corporate travellers and those staying for seven nights or longer.

Anyone can stay in a serviced apartment, but many of the benefits lend them ideally to corporate travellers. Generally, serviced apartments are best suited to stays longer than four nights such as a corporates relocating to a new country, on secondment or overseeing a new global office. The benefits of a serviced apartment can also be enjoyed by those staying for just one or two nights as well such as those visiting a city for a conference or business meeting.

How do I Find the Right Serviced Apartment For Me?

Booking through an agent ensures that the greatest range of serviced apartments is available to choose from. SilverDoor is an unbiased, privately owned agent with no properties of our own to promote, ensuring only options suited to guest requirements are offered. Our industry-leading booking platform, Orbi, offers a personalised management platform where organising your ongoing apartment requirements and making bookings is streamlined and convenient. 

Leave the sourcing and booking of your serviced apartment to the experts. Your account manager will discuss your needs and try to accommodate any requirements you may have. Whether you need to be close to your office or you’re bringing along your pet, your account manager will provide options to match your criteria.

Now you know what a serviced apartment is, what's next?

Building on this list of the basic requirements that make up a serviced apartment, property operators are always evolving their offer and creating innovative accommodation solutions. While the fundamentals stay the same, continued growth in supply and demand within the sector ensure serviced apartments remain the ultimate temporary accommodation choice.

Ready to book? Browse our extensive portfolio of serviced apartments and contact us to make an enquiry today.

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