Facts & Guide

Innovations in Hotel Automation: From Virtual Assistants to Robotics

The release date:2023/1/3 0:00:00



Imagine checking into a hotel and being greeted by a virtual assistant who knows your name, room preference, and travel itinerary. As you make your way to your smart room, you use your smartphone to unlock the door and adjust the temperature and lighting to your liking. During your stay, a robot brings you fresh towels and amenities, and a chatbot suggests local attractions and restaurants based on your interests.

 

This may sound like science fiction, but it is fast becoming reality as hotels around the world embrace hotel automation and smart technologies to improve the guest experience and streamline operations.

 

Here are eight prominent trends of smart hotels we foresee in 2023. Some of them are already a reality thanks to the fast technological advance and innovation by hotel automation solution providers like HDL Automation.

 

 

1. Smart rooms

One trend in the hotel industry is the increasing use of smart devices and automation to control room functions and provide a more personalized experience for guests.

 

For example, the Aloft Hotel in Cupertino, California uses smart thermostats and voice-controlled lighting and entertainment systems, allowing guests to adjust the temperature and lighting in their rooms using Amazon Echo devices.

 

The Yotel New York in Manhattan has also implemented smart room technology, including a self-service kiosk that allows guests to check in and out, as well as control room functions such as lighting and temperature.

 

2. Virtual assistants

Another trend is the use of virtual assistants and chatbots to communicate with guests and provide assistance. These assistants can be accessed through a hotel's website or mobile App, and can help guests with tasks such as making reservations, answering questions about the hotel and local area, and providing recommendations for things to do and see.

 

The Marriott International hotel chain has implemented a virtual assistant called "Connie," which uses artificial intelligence to engage with guests and provide information and assistance.

 

The Mandarin Oriental hotel group has also introduced a chatbot called "MO Chat," which allows guests to ask questions, request services, and make reservations through messaging apps such as Facebook Messenger.

 

3. Artificial intelligence

Artificial intelligence and machine learning are being used by some hotels to analyze and interpret data from various hotel systems, such as reservation and guest data. For example, the Hilton hotel chain has implemented a system called "Connected Room," which uses artificial intelligence to analyze data from various hotel systems and provide personalized recommendations and services to guests.

 

The system can also predict when a guest may need additional amenities or services, and proactively offer them. The InterContinental Hotels Group has also introduced a system called "IHG Concierge," which uses artificial intelligence to analyze guest data and provide personalized recommendations and services.

 

4. Inventory management

Automation can also be used to streamline and improve the efficiency of hotel operations, such as by automating tasks such as inventory management. For example, the Marriott International hotel chain has implemented a system called "Marriott Mobile Requests," which allows guests to request items such as extra towels or pillows using their smartphones. The system automatically tracks the inventory of these items and reorders them when needed, reducing the need for manual inventory management.

 

5. Room cleaning

Robotics and automation can also be used to improve the efficiency of room cleaning. It has been very usual for families, but considering the number of rooms to clean and the uncertainty of room occupancy, hotel room cleaning with robots is still challenging.

 

The Aloft Hotel in Cupertino, California uses a robot called "Botlr" to deliver amenities to guest rooms. The Yotel New York in Manhattan has also implemented a robot called "Yobot," which stores luggage for guests in a secure locker system. In addition, the Henn-na Hotel in Nagasaki, Japan uses robots to clean guest rooms and provide assistance to guests.

 

6. Food and beverage service

The food and beverage industry is also embracing automation, with some hotels using robots to take orders, prepare food, and serve drinks. For example, the Café X robotics cafe in San Francisco uses robots to prepare and serve coffee and pastries. The Cali-Mex chain of restaurants in Europe has also introduced robots to take orders and serve food.

 

7. Check-in and check-out

Automation can also be used to streamline the check-in and check-out process for guests. For example, some hotels are using self-service kiosks or mobile check-in options, which allow guests to complete these tasks on their own without the need for human staff.

 

The Hilton hotel chain has implemented a system called "Digital Key," which allows guests to use their smartphones as room keys and to access their rooms directly, bypassing the traditional check-in process.

 

The InterContinental Hotels Group has also introduced a system called "IHG Concierge," which uses artificial intelligence to analyze guest data and provide personalized recommendations and services.

 

Room temperature, water heating, and lighting control

One trend in the hotel industry is the use of automation to control the room temperature, water heating in the shower room, and independent lighting in guest rooms. This can provide a more comfortable and energy-efficient experience for guests, as the systems can be programmed to adjust the temperature and lighting to the guest's preferences or to optimize energy usage when the room is unoccupied.

 

One of the auto-control hotels is the Samaya Hotel in Dubai. This five-star hotel is equipped with an intelligent HDL Buspro Wireless smart home system for all guestrooms and apartments where lighting, curtain, music, security, and air conditioning are controlled automatically and intelligently for maximum efficiency and comfort.

 

With smart sensors and iTouch smart panels by HDL Automation, the Samaya Hotel has cut a considerable amount of costs from power, employees, and facility. It has become an elegantly-styled hotel with wirelessly connected appliances that provide seamless enjoyment to its guests at affordable prices.

 

Conclusion

As automation and smart technologies continue to advance, it is likely that they will play an increasingly important role in the hotel industry. While these technologies have the potential to greatly improve the guest experience and streamline operations, it is important for hotels to consider the potential impacts on employment and the need to balance efficiency with a personal touch.

 

Regardless of the direction the industry takes, it is clear that the future of hotel automation is one that is ripe with possibilities and opportunities for innovation and enhancement of the guest experience. Next time when you settle in a hotel, do check out the smart devices in the room!

 

 



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