Whilst the hospitality industry is rapidly adopting smart tech during the pandemic period, the benefits go way beyond simple automation and touchless control. Christophe Malsot, Director of Hospitality, Leisure and Retail for EMEA at Technological Innovations Group (TIG), explains how selecting technologies that integrate with one another can provide hotels with the opportunity to elevate the guest experience to another level…
Post-lockdown, guests will undoubtedly expect to see more technology in all areas of a hotel, that provides a safer but still very welcoming and ultra-personalised experience. Great examples of integrated technology will include digital signage in lobbies, bars and restaurants, gyms and conference rooms, that indicates the availability and cleanliness status of the furniture and equipment in these spaces. Guests will also expect to be able to use their own smartphones to check in, open their room, control their environment and in-room entertainment, and get in touch with the concierge.
But, with the hospitality industry not expected to recover much before 2023, hotels are being forced to reconsider their offering and find ways of staying ahead of the game. Christophe Malsot, Director of Hospitality, Leisure and Retail for EMEA at Technological Innovations Group (TIG) says: “Covid is forcing companies in all industries to innovate and, by marrying together the right smart tech solutions, hotels can completely change the way visitors want to use their space, above and beyond a place to stop and rest.”
TIG offers an ecosystem of class-leading technologies that can be bundled together to form tailor-made solutions, which will help cater to new consumer habits and an altogether enhanced user experience. As Malsot explains, “Technology integration can provide many more opportunities to be creative in the way hotels use their existing assets, by increasing the functions of a communal space or guestroom and thus offering a multi-faceted guest experience.”
For instance, during this challenging period of mass under-occupancy, and with the meetings and events industry in complete standstill, many hotels have taken to renting out guestrooms, conference rooms and communal spaces for individuals to use as an office. The ‘hotel office’ concept goes hand-in-hand with the flexible working culture which has developed in response to the pandemic. Rooms may also be hired out to serve as the backdrop for virtual events. Packages range from late check-out to single-day rental or even five-day Monday to Friday deals, with the option to extend and include overnight stays, use of the gym or luxury add-ons such as a butler service.
Ideal for visitors who are in the city for work and need a quiet place for a few hours or for locals who simply need to escape the distractions and monotony of working from home, this initiative can maximise the benefits of your hotel’s existing space and recover lost revenue. By combining the need for a dedicated working space with the amenities of your hotel, with perks such as a proper desk, a clean and peaceful private environment, high-speed internet, printing privileges and the latest integrated technology, hotels can provide a value-added service in today’s volatile climate.
“TIG understands the need for a human touch, to ensure it is truly beneficial to the user.” – Christophe Malsot, Director of Hospitality, Leisure and Retail for EMEA at Technological Innovations Group (TIG).
Little touches like cute stationary packs, free refreshments and loyalty rewards programmes are also a way to make your offering competitive, but they’re just the cherry on top, as the key to developing this kind of service lies in technology!
What users need first and foremost is to be able to rely on easy-to-use unified communications systems, impressive audio-visual facilities and remote collaboration tools that work with any device, so they can simply connect and hit go from their own laptop, tablet or smartphone.
According to Malsot: “Any crisis will unveil the need to go through a series of technological changes and transformations. But simply injecting tech without purpose is not the most user-friendly approach. TIG understands the need for a human touch, to ensure it is truly beneficial to the user. That’s why our solutions integrate to form bespoke bundles that match your clientele’s needs today and futureproof your offering.
“There’s a fine line between something working well, and something that is so seamless and intuitive that it transforms the entire experience and leaves your guests begging for more!”
TIG’s portfolio includes intuitive automation, beautiful control hardware, remote management, audio-visual equipment, best-in-class unified communications solutions, conference room booking software and show-stopping digital signage. Mix and match between:
- Collaboration, unified communications and automation technology from Crestron
- Intuitive contemporary control panels from Black Nova
- Energy-saving power distribution and remote monitoring systems from GUDE
- Luxury custom-design switches and sockets from Rhombus Europe
- Status lights and signs from Embrava that indicate availability and cleanliness of communal facilities
- Advanced conference room booking software from NFS
- Made-to-order furniture from Salamander Designs that fits in perfectly with specific AV products to bring a space-saving and stylish finish
Unified communications tech from Crestron enables the guestroom to function like the home office, only better. The unmatched videoconferencing services facilitate easy-to-manage, hassle-free collaboration to professional standards, making remote working feel less remote! AirMedia enables secure, wireless content sharing from the comfort of a personal device. This integrates with Crestron touch screens and occupancy sensors to turn the system on with just one command or automatically, the moment a guest enters the room. Do Not Disturb signs help drive efficiency and increase motivation, with zero distractions.
Below is a video that captures editor Hamish Kilburn checking in to review the recent tech renvoation of Bloc Hotel Gatwick, in collaboration with Symbiot and Crestron:
Room booking software from NFS is an ultra-convenient and cost-effective solution, empowering hotels by streamlining the management of meetings, catering and resources. It offers search and reporting functionality, giving staff real-time visibility of how spaces are being used, and includes visitor management such as parking and building controls, as well as the booking of services like catering and AV. Its integration with Crestron also enables the in-room lighting and tech systems to automatically shut down when the room is no longer in use.
For the ultimate in comfort and ergonomics in any-size room, Salamander Designs’ AV furniture brings a compact, sleek solution which is as functional as it is beautiful. The innovative design of its cabinets, tables and mobile trolleys allow virtually all wiring, power supplies, components and cables to be hidden yet easily accessible, packaged within a customisable solution that perfectly matches your hotel’s style.
Malsot concludes: “In today’s climate of uncertainty, hotels that show forward-thinking will be the ones that reap the rewards. Tech is the glue that holds together many different aspects, and TIG is helping hotels across EMEA use this to their advantage. By building multi-purpose smart spaces where every device is seamlessly connected with an intuitive and user-friendly control solution, hotels can remain flexible, futureproof and confidently able to ride the storm!”
To help people understand how TIG’s ecosystem works, it has opened two Experience Spaces in London and Frankfurt, with more to come in Paris, Moscow and Johannesburg in 2021, where visitors can see the solutions in action.
Technological Innovations Group is the founding Headline Partner of Hotel Designs LIVE. The next online conference takes place on February 23.
Main image credit: TIG