The latest hotel innovations improve guest experience, embrace digital and help boost consumer spend at the touch of button. WGSN Senior Editor Carlene Thomas-Bailey reports
When it comes to hotel experiences, most of us are more likely to think ‘luxury’ rather than ‘innovation’. And while chocolates on the pillow and towels in the shape of hearts are great, and very thoughtful, they are not all that helpful.
To improve on this, guest experiences are getting a revamp with a focus on digital, convenience and spend. Retailers and hotels are thinking more about how they can make their guests visit even easier and more enjoyable. Enter on-demand services that embrace tablets, smartphones and emojis.
The latest advances feed the consumer need for product at the touch of a button, making their lives easier, but also enhance the shopping experience so that consumers can spend without leaving the soft sheets and high thread count of their hotel bed. From emoji room service to clothes on demand, here are three new innovations:
1. Clothes on tap
The Mini Fashion Bar By Pimkie
If you often look at your mini-bar and wish it could be replaced with a closet full of clothes then this is for you. Pimkie, the French retail brand, has branched out into offering clothes and accessories for women delivered straight to their hotel room. Customers can even curate what clothes arrive – preordering clothes to handle bad temperatures or ones that work perfectly for that last-minute work dinner that’s cropped up. The service is currently available in Antwerp, Paris and Brussels.
2. Dinner on Demand
The Hard Rock Hotel in Chicago has teamed up with TuchTablets so that guests can order anything from the onsite restaurants for dinner that night, ranging from a cheeseburger to Caribbean food. Rather than the classic rigmarole of picking up the phone and dialing reception only to be put on hold, this concept makes the entire process more convenient.
3. Room Service with a smile (y face emoji)
Aloft Hotels is hoping that you won’t be using the crying emoji to review your stay there, thanks to their new emoji room service. Consumers no long have to write out their dinner order, or ask when the maid will arrive, the emojis do all the talking. You text what you need, say a toothbrush, and add in your room number and everything is ordered in one go. You can even order a ‘surprise me’ option to be gifted with presents. The service is currently available in the Aloft in Downtown Manhattan.
ALWAYS TRAVELLING? Discover the coolest neighbourhoods, must-see stores and best hotels, restaurants and inspiration spots with our incredible City-By-City guides.