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Find music for hotels confusing? Here’s one hotel that’s doing it right

How do you plan music for hotels? I get that question all the time, and it's a critical thing to consider.

Why? Because every hotel needs an atmosphere, a way of giving customers a positive, memorable impression, whatever price class you're in, and whatever customer group you're trying to target. And since people react to music emotionally and immediately, playing the right music in your hotel is one of the most direct ways to give a good overall impression.

background music for hotels

But it’s also a misleading question, often making something rather tricky seem overly simple.

Because “How do you decide what music to play?” only covers picking great songs. And the better quality those songs are, the better music you're playing. Right?


Playing great songs is only half the equation. To give guests an excellent musical experience you need more planning and forethought.

Because there's no more direct way to set the experience for your customers than playing the right music if you play it at the right time.

Things to consider when picking music for hotels:

You’ve got to cater to the needs and demands of hotel and restaurant guests, and conference or meeting room attendees. Plus, you need to set your brand apart from the competition. Hotels aren’t static businesses and can be broken up into subsections for its different customers:

  • Meeting rooms
  • Bars
  • Restaurant
  • Lobby & lounge
  • Pool & spa

With this comes a lot of movement in what it offers to its customers:

  • Conferences and business meeting place in the morning and after lunch
  • Restaurant at lunch
  • After work drinks & bar
  • Dinner in the restaurant
  • Lounge bar in the evening
  • Relaxing space

Music for hotels is more complicated than just playing a basic branded playlist.

We teamed up 1 Hotels to curate and schedule the music in their hotels, including their beachfront property on Miami’s South Beach.

Their brand is built on celebrating nature, and they fine-tune the music continually to match the weather and the time of day.

Alex Butler, head of Special Operations at 1 Hotels told us that guests don’t want to hear the same music when you wake up as you want to hear in the afternoon. And by the same token, he said, you don’t want to listen to what you hear in the evening at night.

”People want to hear different music as they move through different spaces and during different times of the day”

Alex Butler

Their music evolves throughout the day as the environment and customer base changes. The energy and genre of music can change the vibe you want to create.

Things To Think About With Hotel Music

#1. How can you change the style of music throughout the day?
Jazz in the morning, pop in the afternoon, lounge after work? What you play should reflect the mood of the moment, what your customers are expecting, and your brand values.

#2. What energy level do you need throughout the day and parts of the hotel
Same as #1. You don’t want up-tempo club tunes during the 9 am conference meeting or slow jazz at 5 pm drinks. Build the music to match the time of day and where it is being played.

#3. What kind of customers are you serving through the day, and what are they doing?
For the best music experience, What you play should reflect the mood of the moment, what your customers are expecting, and your brand values.


Getting your music right is about testing and trying something new. Don’t just press play and walk away thinking the music is done. You’ve spent valuable time on building your hotel property and brand, so make sure the music carries.

Soundtrack of 1 Hotels


The soundtrack ranges from the elegant and dreamlike to rawer and more earthy sounds, all infused with 1 Hotel's organic and tropical ambience.


Mood-based music
for your business

Just press play

Learn more


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