Hotels of the Future: 6 key features

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Glass TVs that know your favourite films, showers that adapt to your body temperature and glass privacy walls which change from transparent to opaque. These are all predicted to be key features of hotel rooms by 2034 according to new research…

Hospitality technology experts Guestline has partnered with six technology, AI and hotel experts to reveal how the hotel of the future will look and function by 2034.

Partnering with accredited experts from the world of technology, hotel and hospitality interior design companies, Guestline believes that AI (Artificial Intelligence) and voice control will be the prominent game changers in how we experience staying at a hotel over the years to come.

A recent study predicted that by next year 85% of relationships with businesses will not require human interaction. As a result, hotels are seeking ways to become more customised and convenient for their guests. However, a recent survey of 2000 people showed there are concerns about processes being managed through artificial intelligence rather than reception staff. 

The results revealed that over half of us (60%) are concerned about how a lack of human interaction will alter their hotel experience and requests.

Says Ralph Fernando, Director of Strategy, Digital & Operations at Pragma:

“Soon there will be screens that welcome you by name when you approach them in the hotel lobby by using data from your mobile phones which already exists – registered through the hotels WiFi. Once you’re there it will be an automatic check-in process through facial recognition and your room key will be digitally downloaded to your mobile phone.”

Here are the 6 main features of tomorrow’s hotel rooms, according to Guestline.


1. The Digitalisation of Glass

Glass is the next big thing. Its minimalist allure creates a sleek concept for technology to intertwine digitalization with design. Glass TVs are already being prototyped by the likes of Panasonic while we will see planes of glass acting as entire walls.

 

Glass walls can be attractive and have the ability to turn opaque if someone is using the bathroom. Being able to change the opacity and imagery on the glass makes it the ultimate personalized experienced for hotel users.

Says Ralph Fernando from Pragma:

“Privacy glass will be incorporated within the hotel room that can be made transparent or opaque via an app on the in-room tablet, alternatively it would be possible to activate the privacy wall through voice control.

“If it’s not privacy you need it might be to personalise the room to your mood and these wall length glass walls will allow guests to tailor the room decoration to their preferred style and colour, be that a video of beach waves or a sunrise in Bali.”

2. AI and Voice Controlled Functions

The future is where AI and personal service will compete but also complement each other. Ordering a bottle of water from the in-room menu will no longer require a call down to reception, but a simple “Hello” to the i-concierge built into your room.

Says Owner & Director of Eccelston Square Hotel: 

“Our phones will sync immediately with the in-room technology, for uninterrupted, comfortable and seamless facetiming/television/streaming and viewing. Guests will use dining apps available through the hotel property to seamlessly order exactly what they want, when they want it.

Voice assistants like Siri or Alexa will lose THEIR identities, instead their universally available knowledge will be integrated into our own personalised i-personality/bitmoji. i-assistants will be a comforting extension to our own knowledge. Interfacing will be highly personalised, but less personal.”

3. Artificially Intelligent Room Controls


No more drawing the blinds, calling down to order room service or asking for extra towels. Soon you’ll just chat with your in-room i-concierge who can even memorise what time to flick the light switch so you can grab some shut-eye.

Says Operations Director at City Suites, Duncan Anderson believes: 

“Over the next 15 years voice technology will act as the control hub as it is very personal and hotel rooms are a good opportunity to get the guest to interact with AI to build a better profile of their preferences.”

Adds Ralph from Pragma:

“Guests will have the ability to cast lighting levels, room temperature and music levels all through either AI or their digital pads on the wall.

We already know this exists in some hotels; however the technology is quite basic and we imagine that over the foreseeable future that control for the guests will become more personalised – such as sunrise/set lighting, audio that can produce a selection of noises to help you sleep and aromas to facilitate better sleeping.”

4. Showers that find your ideal temperature at a touch of a finger



Expect to find digital technology boards which can detect the optimal shower temperature from your body using just the heat levels from the touch of a finger.  

 Says Sara Canatario, Product Marketing Manager at Guestline:

“Technology provides the ability to access things with touch and fingerprint recognition, using our DNA to make payments, access rooms, start your car and sign into work. Digital showers are already on the market, however moving forward we expect to find digital technology boards which can detect the optimal shower temperature from your body using just the heat levels from the touch of a finger.”

5. Everything will be Wireless

Jo Littlefair, Co-founder and Director of Goddard Littlefair, shares her thoughts on a ‘wireless hotel’ keeping minimalism at the forefront of designing a hotel room. Having previously designed rooms for The Principal, The Hilton, Intercontinental and Corinthia Hotels, it is essential luxury is blended with sleek technology.

“Plugs and sockets will probably go completely. The trend will continue towards hidden or invisible technology, but with the provision that medical research on the effects of wireless connection hasn’t come up with anything negative in the interim. The interface and balance between wellbeing and technology will be key,” she says. 

Adds Co-founder & CEO of Humanize, Duncan Anderson:

“We won’t have wiring systems everything will be Wi-Fi enabled and voice control. It should all be enabled and hooked up, things such as TVs won’t need to have plugs in the back of them it will be so you can install it anywhere in the room.” 

6. Glass TVs will know your favourite TV shows and films


Prototype Glass TVs are already available, and with the allure of minimalism trending within interior design and personalisation becoming the demand for guests, we can expect to find all our favourite films and shows tailored to us on the screen when checking-in.

 

 

Chris Price
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