by Kaylee Hultgren | August 01, 2008

No men allowed: The Premier Hotel has a women-only floor.Hotels have long marketed themselves either to business or leisure travelers, but now some properties are getting a whole lot more specific. Take, for instance, the new Shariah-compliant hotel chain (halal-prepared food, no alcohol, no smoking, no adult movies) in the United Arab Emirates. Or hotels designed for eco-tourists, extreme-sport athletes, bookworms or fashion enthusiasts.

One concept gaining traction, even with mainstream brands, is the women-only hotel floor. At the 253-room Crowne Plaza Bloomington (Minn.), 25 rooms have been set aside strictly for female guests, with frills such as fresh flowers and large makeup mirrors. Last month, the 125-room Premier Hotel in New York City unveiled a “Women Travelers” floor with offerings such as yoga mats, women’s magazines and in-room spa treatments, among other amenities.

Last March, Pedro Castro launched Attitude Hotels, a Zurich-based hotel collection for gay and lesbian travelers. “There has never been a structured, professional and brand-oriented affiliate program where hotels can address the worldwide gay and lesbian travel community,” he says. (So far there are five Attitude properties in the United States, in New York City; Palm Springs, Calif.; Key West, Fla.; and two in Fort Lauderdale.) Castro plans to assemble a sales team to target gay and lesbian groups. “It’s on my to-do list,” he assures.

For now, group business likely will remain a niche within the niche hotel market.