The lighting in a hotel is an important part of the overall ambiance and can set the tone for the entire space. From the public areas like the lobby, lounge, reception, SPA, restaurant, and to guest rooms, the right hotel lighting can create a warm and inviting atmosphere that will make guests feel welcome and comfortable. Unlike residential lighting, hospitality lights should not only provide a comfortable atmosphere for guests but also emphasize the commercial value of the rooms. Especially for guest rooms, as they’re one of the sources of revenue for hotels.

What are the design requirements for guest room lighting?

Before carrying out the lighting design, there have the illumination requirements of each area of the hotel guest room for us to follow. Below are the architectural lighting design standards for guest room places, such as activity areas, bedsides, writing desks, bathrooms.

Guest Room AreaHeight of the measuring levelsLUXUGRUoRa
General activity area0.75m75 80
Bedside0.75m150 80
Writing DeskDesktop300 80
Bathroom0.75m150 80

*According to the regulations of “Architectural Lighting Design Standard GB50034-2013”.

For economic hotels, the lighting mainly serves its functional purpose and focus on energy saving, atmosphere creation is relatively not that important. But for five-star luxury hotels, lighting that can improve the atmosphere is the top priority. So how to design the lighting to achieve a warm and comfortable atmosphere?

Layered lighting, of course!

There are four methods that can help you achieve layered lighting and create the mood for a hotel.

  1. Create a spectacular space through layering lighting, and satisfy the lighting needs of the space through the combination of practical and ornamental lighting.
  2. Change the lighting layout to obtain a sense of space and atmosphere, that is, in addition to installing luminaires on the ceiling, you can also make the best of the wall.
  3. Capable of using various beam angles.
  4. Make good use of the dimming system, set up different scenes, and combine them to create various lighting moods.

Additionally, be sure that the layering lighting is controlled by different circuits, so that the layered lighting effect can be promised. For example, lighting needs to be prioritized: task lighting is most important, followed by mood lighting. Secondly, the lighting of different layers should be maintained with the premise of spatial integrity.

Besides, use multiple sets of switches to control layered lights for effective combinations and create various lighting scenes. For example, one switch can be used to turn on the overhead lighting, while another switch can be used to turn on the floor lamps. This allows for different combinations of lighting to be used depending on the desired effect.

Last but not least, dimmers can be used to further control the intensity of the lighting. Set the lighting to dim automatically to save power. Or, set the lighting to dim on a timer so it will automatically turn off after no activities.

How to choose Hotel Guest Room Lighting?

Guest room lighting system maybe is the most insignificant in the hotel, but approximately 60% of hotel space is devoted to guest rooms, it’s basically the true meaning of a hotel. The good lighting design aims to provide guests with a comfortable environment and experience for resting, so they are comfortable and relaxed, and most importantly, to make the guests feel at home.

To provide a home-like environment for the hotel, you need to set up a lighting plan including Illumination standard, Layer lighting planning, Logical Lighting Layout, Lighting fixture selection, Lighting scenes control, etc. Among these, lighting fixture selection is quite important, as it determines whether the lighting effect is good and whether the place is illuminated exactly as required.

There are basically two kinds of lighting fixtures used in the hotel guest room lighting. One is the decorative lighting, such as wall lights, floor lights, table lamps, bedside reading lights, pendant lights, mirror lights, chandeliers, etc, and another is the architectural lighting. Architectural light fixtures are mainly LED downlights/LED spotlights, and LED strip lights/cove lights. (And the footlights which are installed in the corner of the wall.)

Hotel Architectural lighting Fixture

When it comes to choosing architectural lighting and considering the functional needs of hotel guest rooms, there are several aspects and guides we can follow.

1. LED Down Light Spot Light Series

As the primary lighting for guest rooms, a well led downlight should contain below characteristics:

  • Excellent Light Quality

When making a lighting design for hotel guest rooms, the basic light quality requirements are concluded as follows:

Color TemperatureCRIR9 ValueSDCM
2700K-3000KRa>85>20<3 step

Basically, all the light fixtures used in the guest room should have a high CRI value Ra>85 and the color temperature should be in warm colors 2700K or 3000K. The color temperature should be consistent and SDCM (Standard Deviation Colour Matching) need to be less than 3-step.

  • Rational Luminaire Structure: Anti-glare, adjustable fixture angle, and compact configuration.

A good downlight fixture should be with an anti-glare design, anti-glare means you can see the objects that are lit but the luminaire is invisible, this way the light is not dazzling our eyes directly, so customers have a better check-in experience. The Anti-glare down lights can either be with a deep reflector inside or add a Honeycomb anti-glare component or even with a special treatment optical reflector.

Secondly, LED downlight fixtures should with 0-30° vertical adjustable swing angle plus horizontal full-angle adjustable, this extra function of the spotlights can achieve regularity while laying out the luminaires in the ceiling.

  • Good Optical Design: the beam angle is relatively accurate and the light spot is natural.

Beam angle is one of the most effective ways to create light layering in the guest room space. When it comes to beam angle, it has a narrow beam, medium narrow beam, medium beam, medium wide beam, and wide beam. For traditional Halogen light sources or fluorescent lights, the main beam angels are 10°, 24°, 36°, 45°, and 60°. But in the LED lighting era, beam angles are diversified. As far as the hospitality light fixture is concerned, we recommend using medium narrow 15-18°, medium beam 22-25°, and medium wide 28-30°.  Different beam angles are used for different areas since they create different light effects.

Generally, a beam angle <20° is a narrow beam, while a beam angle between 20° and 40° is a medium beam, and a beam angle >40° is considered a wide beam. The following example is a common halogen MR16 light source with beam angles of 10°, 24°, and 38°.

Beam Angle Options for Hotel Downlights

Whether it’s a facade or flat, the guest room space must be tidy and clean. Any disorganized lights or shadows are not advisable as it’s of no help to create light layerings and express illuminated objects. Therefore, a well light spot should have the following features:

#1. Avoid tire marks on the edge of the light spot,
#2. No yellow spot in the center or edge,
#3. The light pattern should be regular and beautiful,
#4. There should be a natural transition from the central position to the fading edge of the spot.

  • Reliable Power Supply: Flicker-Free and compatible with the dimming control system.

A LED power supply, also known as an LED driver, is essential for LED downlights because it converts the AC voltage from the mains power supply into the DC voltage required by the LED lights. Without a power supply, the LED lights cannot function properly and may even be damaged. The power supply also regulates the voltage and current supplied to the LED lights, ensuring that they operate within their specified limits and preventing overloading or overheating.

Additionally, a good quality power supply can improve the performance and lifespan of LED downlights by providing stable and consistent power. The good power supply brands are Meanwell, Tridonic, Euchips, Osram, Philips, etc, and they should be flicker-free. If you’re using a dimming control system such as DALI or Triac, ensure they’re compatible with your dimmer.

2. LED Strip Lights and Cove Lights

LED strip lights are mainly used as indirect lighting, they are hidden in the ceiling or wall to create a space atmosphere or ambient lighting for the guest room. Also, they’re used in the wardrobe to provide illumination or mounted under bedside tables as a night light. Now many modern hotels use LED strip lights as diffused lighting, instead of spotlights, to create a warm and peaceful sense of space. Therefore, LED strip light quality and working method matter a lot, and the requirements for LED light strips are more stringent. Specifically, we look at the following two aspects when selecting light strips for hotel guest rooms.

#1. Required specification of strip lights

  1. LED strip lights should be remotely powered by DC24V or DC12V constant voltage.
  2. Meet dimmable requirements and without color shift.
  3. High CRI Ra>80 and R9 meet the design needs.
  4. Accurate color temperature and SDCM is within the design scope.
  5. Wiring and installation are straightforward.
  6. Waterproof strip lights should have a well insulating treatment.
  7. Aluminum profile and accessories should be included for better installation.

#2. Light quality

The light quality of led down lights can be also applied to strip lights or rigid strips. However, when LED strip lights are used in hotel guest rooms, their color temperature will be affected by the color tone of the interior space. For example, for a space similar to gray and elegant tones, the color temperature of the light strip usually needs to be higher, so as to avoid the “dirty” feeling of the wall or finish caused by the low color temperature.

Additionally, be aware that strip light with silicon case cover will be easier to get color shift than naked strip light. And the strip lights with the same color temperature will result in a different light color on different color finishes.

What type of architectural lighting is used in the hotel? 

Generally, to reach an average of 75lx illuminance, a guest room will have 11 to 13pcs LED downlights installed in the ceiling. These downlights are mainly narrow beam spot lights of 5 watts to 7 watts. Floor lamps and table lamps are used for decorative purposes, and the selection is almost based on the interior design. According to the intended use, these fixtures are divided into 4 types of lighting: Reading lighting, Accent lighting, indirect lighting, and decorative lighting.

Take an example of a king room drawing, dimension is L5m×W4m×H2.8m. From the layout it’s marked with the luminaire legend R1, R2, R3, and L1, we’ll recommend the appropriate architectural lights based on their installation location and function.

Hotel King Room Lighting Layout

For R1, it’s recommended to use wide beam downlights of 10W, 700LM, 38 beam angle, and outer diameter within 95mm. This down light provides general illumination for the activity area.

For R2, we suggest using adjustable downlights of 7W, 450LM, 25 beam angle, and outer diameter within 95mm.

1) Adjustable spotlights are able to adjust the light projection and make it aim at the illuminated object.
2) As the bedside background lighting, highlights the background structure and emphasizes the design culture and style. Select the installation distance of the lamps and lanterns according to the background-size and the height of the ceiling. The lamp is 300-500mm away from the wall.

For R3, the adjustable downlights will be 8W, 560LM, 25 beam angle, and outer diameter within 95mm.

1) Provide accent lighting for the toffee chair, guest can either rest in there or read.
2) The installation distance of the lamp is according to the size of the toffee chair, in the drawing the lamp is about 500-700mm away from the wall.

3 things we need to consider when designing guest room lighting

If by areas, guest rooms are composed of three areas: bedrooms, corridors, and bathrooms. Each area has different lighting needs according to its use. The purpose of lighting design is not just about lighting up the space, but also about integrating its commercial value, guest requirements, and hotel budget to carry out overall lighting design.

There is no doubt that the bedroom area is the most valuable space of a hotel guest room and its lighting design is crucial. Unfortunately, this is also the area that is most prone to issues. To avoid these issues and make a good hotel lighting design, there are 3 things you need to take into consideration.

1. Does bedside reading spot lights really necessary?

Many lighting designers and ID have argued whether or not it’s necessary to install bedside recessed spotlights, as the lamps emit light directly to the guest lying in bed which can cause serious glare and make them feel uncomfortable. In spite of this, it is necessary to keep bedside spotlights for hotel guestrooms.

There are 3 reasons.

  • Create the atmosphere of the guest room, and ensure that when customers enter the guest room, their attention is on the bed surface which is the highest value in the guest room. The bed is the most valuable commodity in the entire room, and it should be displayed prominently.
  • Show the quality of the woven fabric on the bed (sheet material, whether it is clean or not, etc.), highlighting the grade of the hotel;
  • Then it is used as a reading light.

To achieve the above three points, the bedside spotlights should choose a small beam type, and the diameter of the spot should be controlled at 30cm.  The spotlight should be projected on the bedside pillow, rather than projected on the wall. Only in this way can we achieve the marketing purpose of highlighting the grade of bed products with bedside spotlights.

If you are worried the bedside spotlights will cause discomfort to the guests, you can set a group of switches for the two bedside spotlights, and customers can choose to turn them off after entering the guest room. (If a smart lighting system is used, the bedside spotlights can be set to turn off automatically.) Another choice is installing the spot lights above the night table instead of above the bed, this illumination position can avoid causing discomfort to the guest.

There is a misunderstanding in the layout of bedside spotlights: the installation position of the spotlights is close to the wall, and, as a result, the lights are cast on the wall or the frame at the head of the bed. In fact, the bedside spotlights are not used to decorate the wall or illuminate the painting. If the installation distance is too close, the messy spot effect on the wall is actually meaningless. By the way, the requirements for bedside spot lights are very strict, except for using a narrow beam down light, the spot reflected on the bed should be controlled at about 30 cm in diameter. Moreover, The light quality should be excellent, the light spot is uniform and soft without a secondary aperture, and the projection angle is adjustable.

2. How to position the down light above the television?

There is usually a recessed ceiling down light installed above the TV background wall area, and the ceiling spotlight position is in the center of the TV. Apparently, this way the TV screen would reflect the light, resulting in a noticeable glare. The right way to do this is, you can either move the ceiling light to the side of the TV or install a wall sconce or a floor lamp on either side of the TV to provide ambient light. Another option is to install a dimmable LED strip light above the TV, which can be adjusted to provide the desired amount of light without creating glare.

3. How to light up the decorative picture?

The common problem with the artwork lighting in the guest room is that the spot lights position is too close to the wall, resulting in light spots hitting the wall and frame instead of the artwork. To solve this problem, firstly we should choose the narrow beam spot lights, as the decorative picture is not large size. A wide beam spot light of 36° is enough even for a bigger size wall painting. Secondly, the light position should be 25-30cm away from the wall, so it can avoid the problem that lighting is too close to the wall and can not light up the decorative picture. Lastly, the light color temperature should be a warm light 2700K or 3000k, so that it can highlight the colors of the picture and make it more vivid.

What is the requirement for guest room foyer lighting?

The guest room foyer lighting is used to recognize people’s faces, therefore, the light environment should be well-distributed and luminous. So the guest can recognize the face easily and have a clear and comfortable visual environment that people can rest assured. To meet the requirements, the foyer lighting should use recessed lighting that is wide beam angle, CRI>85, and a 2700K color temp, to ensure the foyer area has 150lx illumination.

It is worth noting that at least one of the two foyer lights are with emergency function which serves as emergency lighting. And it is necessary to arrange emergency lighting that provides illumination of at least 15 lux and it should be able to operate for 3 hours following a mains power failure. Hence, in the case of a power failure, emergency lighting operates to help people safely exit from the hotel. Its purpose is to prevent panic and further distress.

In addition to the general lighting mode of the foyer, there is also a night light mode. The night light provides temporary lighting for getting up in the middle of the night. Night lights such as corner lights and step lights, they are with a low power of about 1W to meet the illumination of 0.2~2lx when getting up at night.

What About Hotel Bathroom Lighting?

When it comes to hotel bathroom lighting, a significant impression is that the space is brighter than the bedroom and it has evenly distributed illumination. The illuminance of the bathroom area must reach 300lx, as guests will do fine visual work such as makeup and washing. And light quality requirement is also much higher, it is recommended to use the color rendering index CRI>90 for bathroom lighting, and use the same Kelvin temperature found in the bedroom, that is 2700 Kelvin to 3000 Kelvin. There are mainly 4 types of lighting you can see in a hotel bathroom, they are:

  • Bathroom sconces. It’s the wall light fixtures that are mounted to the wall and used as accent lighting or task lighting.
  • Bathroom downlights. They’re downlights or spotlights that provide direct downward lighting, which is the primary lighting to light up the bathroom.
  • Vanity lights. Otherwise called mirror lights, these light fixtures are installed on the left/right or above the mirror to use as task lighting.
  • LED cove lights. AKA LED strip lights, they are necessary if you want to create a beautiful atmospheric feel in the bathroom. You can install them underneath bathroom cabinets, behind the mirror, or along the perimeter of the ceiling.

Important note, since bathrooms are damp places, all the lighting used in the bathroom must have an IP rate of IP54, some wet places even need IP65. A fixture’s IP rating refers to its ability to protect itself against damage from solid objects and moisture. The first number in an IP rating indicates its protection against solid objects. The second digit refers to its protective ability against moisture.

About Luminouslite

Luminouslite is a professional hotel lighting manufacturer and hotel lighting solution provider. Not only we’re good at producing hotel architectural lighting such as LED spot downlights, LED strip lights, LED linear lights, Cabinet lights, etc, but also we can customize decorative lights from wall lamps, pendant lamps, floor lamps, and chandeliers. We can supply suitable light fixtures based on your lighting design or we can propose a turnkey hospitality light solution according to your hotel plan.