Nicola Ziman

Date of Award


Document Type

Thesis - Restricted Access (SIA Only)

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Art Business

First Advisor

Maria Sancho-Arroyo

Second Advisor

Betsy Thomas


Increasingly, hoteliers are giving consideration to the display of significant art at hotels as part of the initial planning process. Art hotels, as they are referred to in the thesis, are becoming alternative exhibition platforms showing art collections that often rival those of museums and galleries. Art contributes to the hotels’ aesthetic and adds to the travel experience. As guests enjoy and absorb the hotel ambience, they engage with art in a working space. Guests can discover artists whose work they have not before encountered, they can consider placement and installation and can learn through art programming offered at art hotels. Alluring art hotels that are perceived as discriminating spaces validate showcased art beyond its artistic expression. Accordingly, art hotels become tastemakers and influencers. They can cultivate interest in the artwork of a particular artist, instigate inquiries and initiate the purchase of admired artwork. Considerable footfall at hotels benefits artists whose work receives exposure to a wide audience. Furthermore, artists derive credibility via an art hotel’s endorsement of their work, ultimately creating value for them. Art hotels can thus be helpful in nurturing the career trajectories of artists, in particular, those of emerging and mid-career artists, and may thus be seen as modern-day models of art patronage. The assertion of this thesis is that art hotels have a role to play in the art ecosystem.