Unlike most other countries, Sweden did not implement a strict lockdown, except for a ban on gatherings of more than 50 people that was introduced on 29 March (except for schools and workplaces). The Swedish government relied instead on the good judgement of its citizens while recommending social distancing, avoiding public events and self-isolation.
Prior to COVID-19, Swedish consumers were spending a growing amount annually on experiences and occasions. The shift from goods to services, such as restaurant visits and travelling, grew year-on-year.
With there being no luxury chains of cafés/bars or full-service restaurants present that are owned by international luxury or fashion houses, the competitive landscape for experiential luxury is exactly the same as that for luxury hotels. This means that Radisson Hospitality and Luxury Hotels International Sweden are the only players present in experiential luxury, with each accounting for around half of total value sales.
COVID-19 affected luxury hotel chains more severely than independent luxury hotels, due to reduced domestic and in-bound travel. Larger luxury hotel chains have stricter rules and a culture of hierarchy, which makes it more difficult for them to adapt to new circumstances and introduce new concepts.
Experiential luxury is expected to recover by the end of 2022, to reach value sales similar to before COVID-19. Recovery in experiential luxury is expected to occur faster than in luxury goods, as it is expected that travelling will resume and Swedes are generally willing to spend more on experiences than physical goods, especially after not having been able to travel in 2020.
Luxury hotels face strong competition from the wide choice of high-quality mid-level brands, often with a Nordic connection. Best Western (acquired Sweden Hotels in 2017 (59 hotels)), Nordic Choice Hotels (Norwegian), Scandic Hotels (Swedish), Elite Hotels of Sweden (Swedish) and Radisson (strong connection to Sweden through its collaboration with SAS) all have a strong presence in Sweden.
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Understand the latest market trends and future growth opportunities for the Experiential Luxury industry in Sweden with research from Euromonitor International's team of in-country analysts – experts by industry and geographic specialisation.
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This report originates from Passport, our Experiential Luxury research and analysis database.
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