​With up to 86% of hotel bookings made online, choosing the correct photographs for your hotel is crucial. Whether you're in Cambodia, Thailand, Vietnam or anywhere throughout Southeast Asia all of your hospitality photography used on your website, OTAs, marketing, etc. SHOULD be made by a professional and experienced hotel photographer.

Options To Source Your Hospitality Photography

​There are thee main options to source your hotel photos and I will look at the pros and cons of each, plus when you should be using their photos.

Hospitality Photography – When Not To Use a Professional
Sunset Restaurant at Independence Hotel by Dara



  • The professional hospitality photographer will make high-quality photographs that show your hotel at its best. With years of experience, they know how to get the best out of every hotel photo shoot.
  • The hotel photographer understands your hotel photography guidelines and brand standards and will stick to these throughout the shoot.
  • You will not have the large expense of purchasing camera and lighting equipment and then learning how to make the best use of it. The photographer will already have all the necessary equipment and the technical know how.
  • The photographer knows exactly how to capture each unique locations and under the best lighting conditions. They will make sure they capture every frame that is needed for post-processing to make the perfect photo.
  • The photographer will provide you with a shot list and help with the planning to make the hotel photoshoot perfect.
  • Consistency through the photos and through your marketing materials.


  • Planning and budgeting are required.
  • Licensing and usage rights need to be worked out and understood beforehand.


Professional and high-quality hospitality photography should be used whenever possible. It is important the professional images must be used on your websites, OTAs, marketing materials, press releases and advertising.

Hospitality Photography – When Not To Use a Professional
Aster Lounge at Garden City Hotel



  • Your hotel owns the photographs so you are able to do whatever you want with the images.
  • There is not much planning involved and the photographs can be produced quickly.
  • The photographer will have inside knowledge of the hotel property.


  • The hotel in-house photographer may already have a full-time job.
  • They will not have the equipment and experience of the professional hotel photographer.
  • The quality and compositions of the hotel photos will suffer due to the lack of experience.


Social media is more agreeable towards lower quality hospitality photography. So posting in-house photography of food, events, staff and sneak peeks is acceptable.

Subject matter that needs to be re-shot on a regular basis, such as food and events, is an area the in-house photographer will be of great use.




  • There's is a steady source of new content.
  • The photos are captured by the guests so give an insight into what the hotel guest sees.
  • Lets you engage more with your guests.
  • The photos can be shared on the guest's social media channels which can give you good exposure.


  • You do not have any control over the source of the photographs so there is no consistency.
  • The quality of the photographs is usually low due to the fact that mobile phones are used to take many of the photos.
  • Hotel guests also lack the expertise of a professional hotel photographer.


For sharing on social media channels and hotel review sites.


​If you are a hotel or resort in Cambodia, Bali or anywhere else in the Asian market then it all comes down to the intended use of the hospitality photography. For almost all cases, you should be hiring a professional hotel photographer for your hospitality photography. The photos are what attracts a guest to your hotel and influence their decision to book with you.

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