Up until now, Jeremy Cowart has been known as a photographer of the stars, but now he wants to be known for changing the world with what he is calling “The Purpose Hotel.” For the last ten years, the celebrity photographer has photographed various celebrities including Sting, Britney Spears, the Kardashians, Taylor Swift, and others. Throughout the process, he’s stayed at various hotels and, according to his Kickstarter page, none have left him inspired, so he began a new journey creating one that can.
According to Cowart, better hotel stays are the ones where you leave feeling more refreshed than you when you checked in, but if you can help change the lives of others in the process, it can be the best hotel stay ever. Cowart is the founder of a new ambitious project called The Purpose Hotel, where every product used will help support a specific cause or outreach program. His dream is to help you “change the world while you sleep,” and help tackle real-world issues like poverty, clean water, human trafficking, and others. Sound impossible? Don’t tell him that.
“For the last decade, I have been traveling around the world, shooting for, collaborating with, speaking with and meeting incredible nonprofits,” Cowart says. “Their founders and teams have become close friends, but I’ve never understood the bigger picture until now. My journey has led me to this moment, where I get the opportunity to help all of them through The Purpose Hotel. What a gift. I could not be more thrilled to move forward on this journey together.”
In The Purpose Hotel’s Kickstarter page, Cowart explains how no two hotel stays will be the same for each guest.
“Under the room number outside your door, you see a boy or girl who your room helps gives access to education, food, clothing and more. Inside your room, you relax in a plush, modern place where you can learn about every object in the room and why it was selected. As you walk around the hotel, the walls and the art tell stories of people from cultures around the world who are part of the movement, like artisans and skilled workers.”
The Purpose Hotel has a “1 for 100” benefit model in that each stay, a guest will be able to help 100 lives or more. “We can build something that changes lives and becomes a defining mark of this generation. What will we be remembered for? We can leave a legacy of purpose, hope and freedom. (Or we can be known for Pokémon Go.)”
From blankets to specialty soaps to room furniture — a variety of different charities will benefit from those who stay at The Purpose Hotel including: Charity: Water, Compassion International, Dignify, Exile International, Fashionable, Food for the Hungry, HOPE International, International Justice Mission, Legacy Building, Mission Lazarus, Preemptive Love Coalition, Project 615, Project 7, Raven + Lily, People of the Second Chance, The Giving Keys, Thistle Farms, To Write Love on Her Arms, and Zenith Cleaners.
— Intl Justice Mission (@IJM) July 31, 2016
Jeremy Cowart doesn’t want this project to be all about him, so he’s inviting others into the process through Kickstarter.
“We’re not crowdfunding just because we need the money. We’re crowdfunding because it gives you a place in the process. The idea of this hotel being built for the world, by the world is a far more beautiful narrative than the traditional for-profit launch. The Purpose Hotel is a rallying point. It’s a junction where community, justice, microenterprise, technology, art and design intersect.”
The very first Purpose Hotel is planned to be built in Nashville, Tennessee. Those who join the Kickstarter at the co-founder level will find a photo of their face shown on the walls of every Purpose Hotel built.
“We’re not just building a hotel chain; we’re innovating a business model that reimagines the hotel concept and allows hundreds of organizations to multiply their efforts and hundreds of thousands to fulfill their purpose — including yours,” says Cowart.
— Bob Goff (@bobgoff) July 25, 2016
[Photo by Thinkstock]