Clever ideas you can “steal” from Zoku Hotels

I live in Amsterdam, and I use Zoku's coworking spaces once in a while.

Zoku is a small chain with hotels in Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Paris, and Vienna.

They are good at upselling, especially services related to “work”. I’ve been observing their practices in person and checking out their website for some time, and they have some very clever ideas.

So I’ve decided to share them here, for you to “steal”.

#1 Coworking & Lunch

Selling daily coworking passes is hard because you’re targeting individual clients. These people are more price sensitive and always looking for value for money. But Zoku's approach is super smart.

Their daily pass costs 35 Euros (not cheap, even for Amsterdam), but it includes lunch and coffee.The lunch is the twist! It's buffet-style, and the food is absolutely epic. This Zoku coworking day pass creates a perfect environment to meet friends and “cowork” together.

The restaurant doesn’t generate a lot of revenue, but it’s a fantastic marketing strategy (I recommend Zoku to many of my friends).

#2 Zoku employees also work at the coworking space

I’ve noticed, from looking at the laptops, that many people working in the coworking space are Zoku employees.

They were not dressed in uniform, so I didn’t notice them immediately.

But then I realised: Zoku saves tons of money because they don't need their own office space.

And, perhaps serendipitously, the coworking area always looks busy. There’s nothing worse than an empty coworking. Win-win.

#3 The main feature of the hotel is not the apartments

Most hotels have the reception and lobby on the ground floor, together with some meeting spaces.

The top floor with the best views is reserved for most luxury rooms and apartments. Zoku does the exact opposite.

Photo: The rooftop corridor from the elevator to the reception

The reception (!), lobby, and all the work/meeting spaces are on the top floor.

Each meeting room has plenty of natural light, which is what all clients want. It makes so much sense, but somehow it's still contrarian.

#4 Providing all the details of all the event spaces online

One of the most annoying things we experience when onboarding new Surf Office hotel partners is understanding what the meeting spaces look like.

In the best-case scenarios, we receive a well-designed PDF of some meeting rooms. We might also get the names of the rooms, their capacity, and a tiny picture of each.

“Everything is customizable,” they say.


As a client, you want to have all the details with pictures and understand how the spaces look. All of them.

Zoku does just this, and provides an online booking system which completely removes the friction for clients.

#5 Packages for companies

On the Zoku website, you can find many packages for companies.

They target local companies to give up on their offices (which happened naturally with Covid) and use Zoku as a pop-up office.

So employees work remotely, and they meet weekly or monthly in a Zoku coworking space to spend time together.

When these companies have employees visiting overnight from other cities, guess where they will stay?

Other interesting offerings include their relocation packages and packages for film crews.

#6 Creative day use

Uniquely designed Zoku apartments don't only look cool in pictures, I can testify.

Of course, there are always a few rooms empty here and there—nobody has 100% occupancy throughout the year.

But Zoku doesn’t rest on its laurels. They use these vacant rooms as functional spaces.

Zoku has been extremely creative here, offering empty apartments (a.k.a. worklofts) as meeting rooms, podcast studios, or just “offices”.

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