The face-to-face aspect of in-room dining delivery is sometimes seen as the least enjoyable element of that service for guests. Obie Hospitality found a solution to still have upscale presentation without traditional interaction.
“We wanted to really use the robots, not just have them be a cool thing to look at,” says Mark Shouger, GM at the hotel, which is part of Marriott’s Autograph Collection. “So, we needed two, since if one robot is delivering to one person, it can’t deliver at the same time to another person.”
Hotel EMC2, an “art- and science-inspired hotel” in Chicago’s Streeterville neighborhood, already had used two concierge robots since opening about a year and a half ago. The hotel would dispatch the bots, named Leo and Cleo, to deliver amenities such as extra towels or a toothbrush to guest rooms. Now, the property officially has promoted Leo and Cleo to delivering food and drink.
Shangri-La's Hotel Jen--a brand with 11 properties in Asia and Australia--is taking the next step in streamlining hotel room service. Two robots named Jeno and Jena deliver items directly to guestrooms, taking labor out of the equation for in-room dining, often the area that keeps many room service programs in the red.
Hotel Chicago-Illinois Medical District (IMD) has partnered with Eat Purely, a fast-growing Chicago startup that provides chef-crafted, organic meals delivered on demand. The exclusive new in-room dining partnership between the West Loop boutique hotel and the health food delivery app is the first of its kind in the local hotel industry, according to a statement from the hotel.
As GM at Stein Eriksen Lodge in Park City, Utah, Dan Flick was in charge when the Mobil Travel Guide raised the hotel’s rating to five stars in 2008. Maintaining that standard requires a lot more than resting on laurels, Flick said when I caught up with him this week. “It certainly has become more challenging," he says. "Forbes has branched out into more of a global system. And as they continue to grow, along with that, the standards continue to elevate, because obviously it’s not their goal, as they continue to expand, to have 400 or 500 five-star hotels.
How would you identify your fellow associates at your hotel—the front desk attendant, the reservations clerk, the concierge, the director of housekeeping, the rooms division manager? All have their place within your hotel, providing a variety of duties and tasks based on endless schedules which eventually bring them in contact with your paying hotel guests. They also represent a vital link to your F&B operations, as they will undoubtedly be the best promoter for every dining outlet within your hotel property. It’s an implied expectation that your hotel associates will foster their best PR efforts in their daily interaction with