Hotel Workers Fret Over a New Rival: Alexa at the Front Desk

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How many jobs will technology take out? Hoteliers have yet to figure out how guests will react to a more tech-heavy experience. A Marriott spokeswoman said in a statement that the chain was not deploying technology to eliminate jobs but was “personalizing the guest experience and enhancing the stay.”

Cliff Atkinson, senior vice president for hospitality at MGM Resorts, said new technologies had changed job descriptions at properties across his chain but had not eliminated jobs. Front-desk clerks displaced by automated check-in kiosks are deployed as “lobby ambassadors” or concierges.

I’m a holiday Wi-Fi addict – and proud

Logging on while on holiday needn’t detract from your experience; in fact, it can help enrich it.

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What do you do first on arriving at a hotel? Check out the pool? Or the view from the balcony? No. Apparently most of us now demand the Wi-Fi code and logon, with a massive 65% admitting to tuning in within seven minutes of arrival, according to a new survey. All I can say, as a frequent traveller, is, what took you so long?

Confession: I am an instinctive and habitual Wi-Fi user, the sort who mainlines Instagram and Twitter without much reflection on the implications for my own mental and physical health. Who cares?

Frankly, it would not surprise me if we start to hear of Wi-Fi-rage before long. Let’s call it Wi-Fury.

The underlying subtle implication of this survey, I reckon, is that this is wrong… To this I would reply: when is anyone fully there? What about the novel you are reading? The film you watched on the plane? Surely every experience is mangled and digested by a million different forces, not least those of memory. What difference can it make if I am connected to people around the globe in a new and different way than before?


Emoji room service is now a thing if you’re too lazy to call the front desk


Excerpt from this article, and have a great weekend!

Aloft Hotels is launching Text it, Get it — TiGi, for short — in Manhattan on Wednesday in an effort to further innovate the hotel experience.

The concept is simple: In every room, there will be a menu of six packages that you can order. After texting the string of emoji (along with the last name and room number) to the hotel, guests receive a confirmation and whatever package was ordered will show up “ASAP,” according to the menu.

“Our guests can now talk to us like they talk to each other,” Paige Francis, vice president of global marketing for Starwood Hotels, told Mashable.