Hotel Property Shot List: The Complete List for Prioritizing Your Architecture and Interiors Photo Shoot

Exterior
Lobby
Guest Rooms
Guest Bathrooms
Restaurant
Bar & Lounge
Pools
Meeting Spaces
Ballroom
Business Center
Wedding Setup
Spa
Fitness Center
Recreational Spaces
Details, Art, Architecture
Beach

Exterior

  • Minimum recommended: 1 image with signage + 1 distinctly different image (may include signage).

  • Often the first impression on guests.

  • Stunning exterior photos can make guests feel excited about their stay, long before they arrive.

  • Go for a modern, yet sophisticated look.

  • Portray strong architectural style and personality. Look for strong angles and perspectives.

  • No parked cars, buses or trucks.

  • Include logo signage where possible.

  • Daytime or dusk is optimal.

  • For daytime images, sky should be clean, crisp, and vibrant.

Strong architectural style, angles, and perspective. Logo signage visible. Crisp, vibrant sky. Local attraction woven into the shot.

Strong architectural style, angles, and perspective.
Logo signage visible.
Crisp, vibrant sky.
Local attraction woven into the shot.

“Night” shot taken at 4am to eliminate parked cars. Strong architectural style highlighted with forced perspective. By darkening nearby buildings, property stands out among competing surroundings.

“Night” shot taken at 4am to eliminate parked cars.
Strong architectural style highlighted with forced perspective.
By darkening nearby buildings, property stands out among competing surroundings.

Lobby

  • Minimum recommended: 1 image with front desk + 1 “layered” image.

  • Photograph lobbies both with layers and with a main focal point. Layers provide a clear foreground, middle ground, and background to create visual intrigue and a feeling of spaciousness. Focal point images document a specific feature or area.

  • Remove unnecessary collateral including magazines and newspapers and unnecessary signage.

  • All lights on.

  • No props such as luggage unless accompanied by a professional model acting as a hotel guest.

  • Televisions & computers off or showing the property brand or logo.

Communal area photographed with layers showing a clear foreground, middle ground, and background. All curtains are open.

Communal area photographed with layers showing a clear foreground, middle ground, and background.
All curtains are open.

Focal point images document the unique features of the space. Curtains are open to create shadows from afternoon sunlight while sheers remain closed to hide outside distractions.

Focal point images document the unique features of the space.
Curtains are open to create shadows from afternoon sunlight while sheers remain closed to hide outside distractions.

Guest Room

  • Minimum recommended: 2+ images per distinct room type.

  • Photograph a distinctive image for each room type. (Don’t reuse an image for different room categories)

  • Create a feeling of spaciousness.

  • Minimize bed wrinkles prior to the photo shoot. Use pins and fabric tape to tuck in corners.

  • Turn off televisions.

  • Remove unnecessary collateral.

  • Ensure coffee maker is not on bathroom counter.

  • Minimize branding on water bottles, coffee, tea, and soft drinks. (Images will become dated and unusable if new branded items are added later.)

  • Remove wastebaskets. Minimize cables and electric appliance cords.

  • Showcase attractive window views.

  • All lights on.

Pre-opening model guest room in hotel parking garage. Supplemental foreground lighting to brighten space with no outside/window lighting. Additional lighting creates interesting shadows on furnishings.

Pre-opening model guest room in hotel parking garage.
Supplemental foreground lighting to brighten space with no outside/window lighting.
Additional lighting creates interesting shadows on furnishings.

Curtains open to show outside view. All lights on.

Curtains open to show outside view.
All lights on.

Bedding tucked. Wrinkles minimized. Use only props - champagne & glasses - provided or available to all guests. Windows open for full outside (river cruise) view.

Bedding tucked. Wrinkles minimized.
Use only props - champagne & glasses - provided or available to all guests.
Windows open for full outside (river cruise) view.

Guest Bathroom

  • Minimum recommended: 1+ image for each distinct bathroom type.

  • Ensure towels are freshly cleaned and neatly placed.

  • Countertops, faucets, and glass doors shined and free of fingerprints.

  • Lights on. Avoid glare on mirrors and glass doors.

  • Cords unplugged and hidden.

  • Toilet seat down.

  • Include ADA bathroom with grab bars.

Amenities are facing forward and organized. Towels are neatly rolled. Hair dryer is not visible.

Amenities are facing forward and organized.
Towels are neatly rolled.
Hair dryer is not visible.

All ADA features are clearly represented. Full room is captured to show expansive space and plenty of room for wheelchair.

All ADA features are clearly represented.
Full room is captured to show expansive space and plenty of room for wheelchair.

Lighting is dimmed to show warmth and to highlight art.

Lighting is dimmed to show warmth and to highlight art.

Restaurant

  • Minimum recommended: 1+ image for each venue/area.

  • Tables fully set with linens, silverware, and glasses.

  • Include interesting interior design elements, lighting fixtures, art, flowers, and table arrangements.

  • Photograph according to the time of day the space is utilized - well-lit for breakfast and lunch spaces. Dim overhead lighting for dinner spaces.

  • No props unless setting up for a lifestyle/food & beverage photo shoot.

Diagonal angle to add visual interest. Camera facing away from window when shooting during bright daylight hours ensures room will appear warm and inviting. Lighting is dimmed. Shadows are boosted in post-processing.

Diagonal angle to add visual interest.
Camera facing away from window when shooting during bright daylight hours ensures room will appear warm and inviting.
Lighting is dimmed. Shadows are boosted in post-processing.

Use of vanishing point technique when photographing a series of tables. Complete place settings at every table. Photographing from corner of the room helps to create a feeling of expansiveness.

Use of vanishing point technique when photographing a series of tables.
Complete place settings at every table.
Photographing from corner of the room helps to create a feeling of expansiveness.

Bar and Lounge

  • Minimum recommended: At least 1 image of each area.

  • Televisions must be turned off unless your venue is a sports bar. In this case, nothing on the screen should be recognizable.

  • No props (including drinks) unless photographing a lifestyle shoot with professional models.

  • Include lit candles if they are part of the standard table/bar arrangement.

Combination of symmetry at bottom of photo with mix of overhead light sizes creates visual interest. Labels on bottles are not legible.

Combination of symmetry at bottom of photo with mix of overhead light sizes creates visual interest.
Labels on bottles are not legible.

Diagonal shooting angle enhances expansiveness of the bar.

Diagonal shooting angle enhances expansiveness of the bar.

Photographing directly on the bar captures room reflections combined with vanishing point technique enhances visual intrigue.

Photographing directly on the bar captures room reflections combined with vanishing point technique enhances visual intrigue.

Pools

  • Minimum recommended: At least 1 image for each pool.

  • All towels and chairs should be perfectly aligned.

  • Umbrellas are either all opened or all closed.

  • Use of props only with professional models or extras.

  • Photograph pool either when the sun hits the pool area creating strong shadows and visual intrigue or at dusk with pool and surrounding lighting turned on.

  • Shoot from an elevated location such as a higher guest room to capture the entire pool. I prefer using a 12-16 ft. stepladder which can be placed precisely where needed for the best shot(s).

  • Include a unique background environment if available.

  • Be sure to include unique pool features such as infinity or fountains.

  • Hotel staff should notify guests of the pool areas to be photographed well in advance (at least 24 hours) with clear signage.

Photographer Team Styling - Including Inflatables & Antique Poolside Linens + Post Process Addition of Gradient Sky All umbrellas are open.

Photographer Team Styling - Including Inflatables & Antique Poolside Linens + Post Process Addition of Gradient Sky
All umbrellas are open.

City hotel rooftop pool photographed in late afternoon to capture dramatic shadows and warm light on furnishings and surrounding buildings.

City hotel rooftop pool photographed in late afternoon to capture dramatic shadows and warm light on furnishings and surrounding buildings.

Pools Photographed Pre-Sunrise or Early Morning to Minimize Inconveniencing Guests.  Photographer styling with 2 pillows duplicated in post processing.  Daytime sky added. Unattractive roof of building next door removed.  Hotel team assisted in watering the pool deck.

Pools Photographed Pre-Sunrise or Early Morning to Minimize Inconveniencing Guests.
Photographer styling with 2 pillows duplicated in post processing.
Daytime sky added. Unattractive roof of building next door removed.
Hotel team assisted in watering the pool deck.

Meeting Spaces

  • Minimum recommended: At least 1 image for each meeting room/setup.

  • Maximize the space while still conveying intimacy.

  • For meeting rooms and boardrooms with one table, photograph the table diagonally or with a strong vanishing point.

  • Capture detail shots of the table settings.

  • Colorful props are encouraged.

  • Leather pads and accessories should be used if they are offered to meeting guests.

  • Televisions and monitors off or displaying hotel branding.

  • Window curtains open. Sheers open if there is a view. Sheers closed to create a more intimate atmosphere.

  • Align all tables and chairs.

  • Various meeting setups may be photographed.

Hotel logo added to TV monitor in post processing. Colorful props and leather desk pads with pens enhance the professional feel of the space.

Hotel logo added to TV monitor in post processing.
Colorful props and leather desk pads with pens enhance the professional feel of the space.

Curtains open. Photographing multiple exposures and merging in post processing ensures view beyond window is visible. Distracting logos removed from building beyond window.

Curtains open.
Photographing multiple exposures and merging in post processing ensures view beyond window is visible.
Distracting logos removed from building beyond window.

Table photographed with vanishing point. Brand logo added to TV monitor.

Table photographed with vanishing point.
Brand logo added to TV monitor.

Ballroom & Wedding setup

  • Minimum recommended: At least 1 image for each distinct wedding and/or event setup.

  • Capture as much of the space as possible.

  • Tables should be fully set for a wedding setup.

  • Curtains open. Sheers may be open or closed.

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