hos·​pi·​tal·​i·​ty | \ ˌhä-spə-ˈta-lə-tē \
plural hospitalities

Definition of hospitality 

1 : hospitable treatment, reception, or disposition thanked our hosts for their hospitality
2 : the activity or business of providing services to guests in hotels, restaurants, bars, etc. usually used before another noun a hospitality suiteValet parking may be the most commonplace, least understood corner of the hospitality industry.— Bruce Feiler… has turned the hospitality business upside down with his far-out hotel designs …— Robert Herzbrun

Examples of hospitality in a Sentence

It was refreshing to be met with such hospitality after our long journey.

Recent Examples on the Web

Under all that southern hospitality, the gorgeous mansions, and lush green parks is an unsettling past. Condé Nast Traveler, "8 Most Haunted Cities In America and Why You Should Visit," 18 Oct. 2018 In September, Tamia Howze, a 21-year-old hospitality and tourism major at North Carolina Central University, got a job at a catering company after one 30-minute phone interview. Chip Cutter, WSJ, "Yes, You’re Hired. No, We Don’t Need to Meet You First.," 15 Nov. 2018 Students who want to learn about the hospitality industry can even work for their school's concierge. Suzannah Weiss, Teen Vogue, "These Colleges Have Hotel-Style Concierges," 23 Oct. 2018 Brooksbank works in the hospitality industry and formerly managed the London nightclub Mahiki. Isabel Greenberg, Harper's BAZAAR, "What Is Princess Eugenie and Jack Brooksbank's Combined Net Worth?," 5 Oct. 2018 In the past decade, there’s been an obvious shift in the hospitality industry–the desire for a unique and local experience among travelers has increased drastically–and services are adapting. Lucia Tonelli, ELLE Decor, "Three San Diego Bungalows Are Transformed Into Vibrant, History-Filled Getaways," 3 Oct. 2018 The hospitality industry aspires to uphold certain expectations: Service with a smile. Janelle Nanos,, "Would you ask someone to leave your restaurant? Boston owners say that’s tricky," 26 June 2018 The society has said for years that visitors deserve world-class hospitality at The Breakers, which is perhaps the grandest of Newport’s summer homes. Washington Post, "Welcome center to open at mansion after long-running battle," 13 June 2018 In years to come, Rosenthal would enjoy Trump’s hospitality at Mar-a-Lago. Frank Rich, Daily Intelligencer, "The Original Donald Trump," 29 Apr. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'hospitality.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of hospitality

14th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for hospitality

Middle English hospitalite "reception of guests, provision of lodging," borrowed from Anglo-French hospitalité, borrowed from Latin hospitālitāt-, hospitālitās "entertainment of guests," from Latin hospitālis "of a guest, of hospitality, hospitable" (from hospit-, hospes "guest, host" + -ālis -al entry 1 + -itāt-, -itās -ity — more at host entry 3

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Last Updated

14 Jan 2019

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The first known use of hospitality was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of hospitality

: generous and friendly treatment of visitors and guests : hospitable treatment

: the activity of providing food, drinks, etc. for people who are the guests or customers of an organization


hos·​pi·​tal·​i·​ty | \ ˌhä-spə-ˈta-lə-tē \

Kids Definition of hospitality

: friendly and generous treatment of guests

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More from Merriam-Webster on hospitality

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with hospitality

Spanish Central: Translation of hospitality

Nglish: Translation of hospitality for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of hospitality for Arabic Speakers

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