Creating a luxurious hotel brand under a winning portfolio
Established in 1914, Josun Hotel has become an exemplary brand in hospitality, transforming into the current Josun Hotels & Resorts yet maintaining the original “First & Best” mentality that it originated with.
In a market where new entrants have raised the bar on luxury hospitality, Josun Hotels & Resorts wanted to position its brands at the forefront of hospitality experiences in South Korea. It was in the process of separating from the Starwood Hotels brand and came to Prophet for help creating an independent portfolio of brands.
Our teams first defined a winning portfolio by sizing the South Korean travel market and conducting customer segmentation. With a hybrid brand architecture, we went on to create relevant flagship brands, with Josun Palace being the luxury namesake label. We focused on its flagship offerings and aimed to redefine the luxury and lifestyle hotel experience in Korea.
Our brand strategy was built to appeal to the sensibility and finesse of Josun Palace’s target audience – “The Cultured Connoisseur.” To speak to this audience, three experience principles were created from Josun’s unique DNA and heritage but also focused on remaining relevant to today’s and tomorrow’s target consumers. The “Josun Touch” principal marks Josun’s quality service standards that guests have always come to expect. The “European Sophistication” principle demonstrates how the brand has always been inspired by global design, culture and lifestyle while providing a comfortable introduction to the Korean travel market. The “Timeless Innovation” principle demonstrates that good experiences with high-end technology should be felt but not seen.
We then developed a draft of a future-state guest experience map to guide a focused collaborative exploration of potential signature touchpoints. This was followed by a hierarchy containing distinct levels of signature experiences.
With this in place, the three principles came to life in the creation of a bespoke and crafted crest symbol that brings the unique heritage and symbology of Josun in perfect balance with sophisticated European visual cues. The symbol reflects the premium stature for its luxury brand with a custom modernized serif logotype that highlights the iconic Josun name, referring to Korea’s royal dynasty.
This modernized classic logo is supported by a light and modern set of visual elements including a sans serif typeface, P22, in a variety of weights along with lighter pastel color palette and graphic elements that complement the strong logo and its chiseled font.
The rejuvenated Josun Palace was launched in May 2021, welcoming guests around the world and elevating its customer experience across all touchpoints. The optimized portfolio and architecture strategy has maximized revenues across the group’s existing brands. Additionally, the portfolio strategy left room for future growth, enabling the group to effectively add new brands in support of local expansion.
The new brand identity of Josun Palace encapsulated the key essence of the hotel’s heritage while ensuring that it was distinctive in its own way among other flagship brands. Prophet was successful in launching a prestigious brand with five-star reviews and part of the Marriott Autograph collection.
And, our work with Josun Palace was recognized by Transform Magazine in the Transform Awards Asia 2022, winning bronze for the category of Best Visual Identity from the Sports, Travel, Leisure and Tourism Sector. It also was mentioned as highly commended for the Best Creative Strategy category.