You may have missed out on a stay at Taco Bell’s pop-up hotel, but don’t worry: This probably isn’t your last chance.
Last week, Taco Bell announced the availability of bookings for its pop-up hotel and resort aptly called “The Bell.” Reservations sold out in two minutes. The 70-room pop-up is located in Palm Springs, California, with prices starting at $169 per night. It will be a short, four-day, taco-themed run.
But Taco Bell sees itself as “already in the hospitality business,” according to an emailed statement to Skift. The company has already invested in a concept restaurant called The Cantina, which is more design forward that its other fast-food locations and serves alcohol. Taco Bell plans to open more than 300 locations by 2022. It sees its hotel stunt as an extension of that.
If Taco Bell were to dive into the world of hotels for real, it would not be the first brand to try and create a lifestyle around its brand. The most recent example is fitness brand Equinox’s hotel opening in New York’s Hudson Yards development.
Both Taco Bell’s pop-up and Equinox’s proper hotel are part of a larger trend toward creating experiences rather than just products. Why take your Gordita to-go when you can sit down for a meal and cocktail in a cute space for far less than you would spend on a mere bowl of guac at a regular restaurant?
Taco Bell is catering to its super fans here, and if there are enough of them, they just might get a full-time hotel.