Safes are moving out of the closet

This article is part one of a three-part article on hotel guestroom safes. Look for part two and three in next week's Technology News.

Safes, especially in the open-concept, upper-tier properties, are moving out of the closet. That’s forcing guestroom safe manufacturers to closely examine the design of their products, said John Foley, VP of sales at Safemark Systems.

“We are seeing more mounting of safes on a wall or surface; since flat-screen TVs, there are no more bulky armoires with space to house the safe,” he said.

The finish and design is now playing an important role since these safes are no longer hidden in the closet. Safe manufacturers are offering new finishes or even customized finishes to coordinate with the room décor.

Space is an important consideration in tight hotel rooms so in-wall safes are trending, especially in new-construction hotels. In-wall safes can be placed in between the studs, taking up no additional physical footprint in the room.

“Twenty-five to 30 percent of our sales are now in-wall safes, which is double the amount it has been,” Foley said.

In-wall safes can often be found in kid-friendly hotels, such as ones near Disney World and Universal Studios, because children typically can’t reach the safes, limiting their access to play with the safe and create headaches for parents and the hotel staff.

“Space is an important consideration, particularly in smaller hotels that need to maximize living space elsewhere in the room,” said Ravid Brosh, global product manager, safes, for VingCard Elsafe.

There is a growing demand of safes in the nightstand or main cabinet. This puts the safe where the guest needs it the most and can make it more convenient to use. Instead of top-open safes, drawer-pull safes are becoming increasingly popular for just that reason, Foley said. “Drawer pull-out safes create an extra-secure, safe-within-a-safe,” he continued.

Since the electronic devices guests carry are getting smaller, some safes are getting smaller to align with that trend.

“Safes used to be big and bulky, but guests are carrying smaller laptops, tablets and smart phones and the design is reflecting that,” Brosh said.