The partnership, with VAPESTICK, makes the 220-bedroom property in Shepherd’s Bush the first hotel in the UK to openly welcome e-cigarettes and ‘vaping’, since the smoking ban came into force back in 2007.
"We are always looking at our customer feedback and how we can best enhance guest experience,” said Clara Saffer, director of sales at K West. “Since making all 220 of our bedrooms ‘no smoking’, along with the majority of the hospitality industry in 2007, we’ve seen a real divide in opinion on this.
“Non-smokers don't want rooms that reek of smoke, and smokers want an easier way to satisfy their craving than a sock-over-the-smoke-alarm, or midnight trip outside.
“This partnership should not only enhance guest experience, but should also bring savings on room maintenance and help to enhance the stay for both our smoking and non-smoking guests."
VAPESTICK products are now being sold behind the K West Hotel's contemporary K Lounge bar, and the business will encourage the devices to be in used in bedrooms, the Kanteen restaurant, the K Spa and all other communal areas. Vaping guests will also be able to select their preferred choice of VAPESTICK from a menu in the bedroom.
This tie-up comes in response to customer feedback about the unavailability of smoking rooms, as well as rooms that have previously been used by illicit smokers. Deep-cleaning services, costing up to £1,500 a time, are instructed at least once a week as a result of guests flouting no-smoking regulations. The hotel hopes the provision of e-cigarettes will significantly reduce the £28,000 this currently costs annually.
Michael Clapper, the co-founder and chairman at VAPESTICK, added: "We're delighted to be welcomed inside the K West Hotel & Spa - it's a pioneering decision and one that should go down very well indeed with the ever-growing number of vapers around the world.
“Our products make life much easier for smoking guests, and also for the hotel itself. Vaping provides a viable solution to would-be secret smokers, who might otherwise cause extra cleaning expense or worse still, ruin the stay for non-smokers.
“Our e-cigarettes leave no lingering smell behind and produce none of the thousands of toxins found in tobacco smoke, so the guests of the K West can vape freely throughout their stay, without offending anyone."
An estimated 1.3 million people in the UK are thought to use e-cigarettes. The majority of them buy products that are manufactured in China where there is very little regulation of their production. Regardless of the health impacts, many of Britain’s biggest companies have felt required to ban e-cigarettes because they look too similar to the tobacco versions. Premier Inn, Wetherspoons and Fuller's have all banned e-cigarettes as the debate about their safety rages on.
Last month, a team of housekeepers from K West Hotel & Spa were crowned the winners of the ‘Housekeeping Olympics’, which celebrated the ‘unsung heroes’ of the hotel industry. Watch the video here.