The world is constantly evolving and the hotel scene is no different. With technology having a huge impact on the way guests both book their hotel stay and interact with hotel staff during their stay we decided to take a look at the current trends shaping the industry.
At your service
A hotel in the Maldives is taking customer service to the next level with the introduction of an Instagram butler. “Butlers” are employed with the sole intention of helping guests get the best possible shot for social media, whether it’s by picking the location, framing the shot or by adding visual props. Conrad Maldives Rangali Island introduced the unique service after noticing that their staff members were often asked to take photos for guests. This added service isn’t just great for boosting the guest experience; it’s also a perfect way for hotels to gain free publicity and flood social media with enviable photos of their hotel. Another hotel with a similar idea is the Hamilton Princess and Beach Club in Bermuda who has sign posted the most photogenic spots around their grounds. With Instagram continuing to increase in popularity other picturesque hotels are bound to follow suit.
Dig into the data
Operators are constantly looking for the best ways to utilise the abundance of data, which is collected during both the booking process and during the hotel stay. By analysing the data collected hotels are able to better manage their customer relationships as well as determine the types of consumers they should be targeting through marketing efforts. It may surprise you but data can tell hotels exactly which guests they should be sending happy hour notifications too or who should be targeted with spa promotions or meal deals. Not only can hotels boost sales in this way, but they can also improve the guest experience and treat every guest like a VIP.
Virtual Reality experiences
Although there are many different ways virtual reality can be incorporated into a regular hotel stay the latest trend is to use the technology to create an entirely new experience for guests. One brand embracing the technology is Marriott who placed VR headsets in their London and New York hotels rooms that allowed guests to experience travelling to different locations around the world. For example from inside their room in London they could travel to Chile, China or Rwanda. Virtual reality has become the latest way for hotels to enhance the in room experience and for Marriott the investment has paid off with 51% of customers who used the VR experience admitting they want to stay at Marriott hotels more often because of it.
The role of artificial intelligence is growing within the hospitality industry especially when it comes to improving the quality of customer service. Hotels are embracing robot concierges in order to bridge the language gap and give guests the opportunity to have the best possible experience. A leading example is Hilton Worldwide who introduced their AI concierge in 2016 in the form of Connie the robot. Guests can ask Connie a variety of questions including where to eat dinner or what attractions to see. The more Connie interacts with guests the smarter it becomes and the more useful its suggestions are. AI technology will only continue to flourish in the hotel sector and is predicted to extend to voice activated services and in room assistants.