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The hotel industry's technological revolution

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Imagine. You’re on vacation. It’s a Saturday night. You and your date have just finished getting ready for a romantic night on the town. You take a short ride to a locally acclaimed restaurant that the hotel’s concierge recommended and enjoy a delicious dinner and a bottle of wine. You walk through the historic streets, slowly making your way back to your hotel to call it a night. You get out of the elevator and walk to your door, reaching into your back pocket to retrieve the room key. You can’t find it in your wallet and begin searching every pocket in desperation. You ask your date if she has her key to which she replies, “I don’t have it; I thought you had it!” You get to the door and instantly a wave of relief washes over you. You place your index finger on the fingerprint scanner, which then unlocks your door, letting you into your room.

Did you time travel into some futuristic, high-tech utopian world? Where are you? Well…chances are you haven’t time time-traveled anywhere. Yes, you might have crossed over the Atlantic Ocean and if you find yourself in this situation, you would be at the Hotel Alma in Barcelona, Spain.

Wait. What? Yes. Hotel Alma in Barcelona has claimed the title as the first hotel to use a fingerprint recognition system to make the fantasies about a keyless hotel room a reality. But Hotel Alma isn’t the only hotel adopting technologies such as this. With superior customer service becoming something of the norm at top hotel chains and boutique hotels, the hotel industry is going through a technological revolution of sorts, in an effort to attract guests in new, more “electric” ways.

Remember the days when rooms that had Wi-Fi accessibility used to be a deciding factor for where to stay? Nowadays, hotels are taking the former “WOW factors” and offering them for free, replacing them with even more exciting technological amenities – which in most cases are also free!

The Atura Hotel in Australia now offers free in-room movies, free Wi-Fi throughout the hotel (and in every guestroom), a business center outfitted with iMacs, and free printing as well as coffee machines in every room. Not only do these amenities appeal to traveling businesspeople, but what parents wouldn’t want to be able to leave their kids in the room and go out for the evening without having to worry about them racking up on-demand movie and Wi-Fi charges?

Alright, I know those two hotels are international. So what new technologies are being offered in the states? Aria Resort and Casino in Las Vegas has equipped every guestroom with a touch screen remote that controls everything – from the lights, curtains and temperature, to the TV and radio. Guests can also use the remote to schedule wake-up calls and service requests.

Other technological amenities include iPad and mobile check-in, Nook e-readers that are preloaded with magazines, newspapers and even requested content, and coffee tables in hotel lobbies that feature a touch screen menu integrated into the surface of the table where guests can order food, drinks or request wait service.

Now, we have yet to find one hotel that offers ALL of these digital amenities. Currently, each hotel is sort of boasting their one or two unique technological advancements as a way to attract guests. Guests demand the best for the money they pay to stay at a hotel. They expect the best, and unless you offer an experience that no one else can (such as an overnight stay in a haunted prison), then you should seriously consider updating your amenities.

Do you have any interest in working in hotels and offering these new and exciting technological amenities to hotel guests? You might want to consider a career in hospitality and hotel administration. Star Career Academy can help you learn the skills that are necessary to land a job in the field of hospitality and hotel administration.

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