Recognized for their eccentric charm and personality, hotels create immersive, memorable experiences through innovative design and thoughtful solutions. In the face of adversity, hotels tailored to their customers by advancing technology solutions and highlighting guest-centric offerings like in-room entertainment and timely sanitizing procedures. Thoughtful innovation propelled hotels into the future and maintained their relevance throughout the pandemic. Here are the top five in-room entertainment solutions that empower hotel guests today:
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Personalization is at the core of hospitality, particularly in today’s travel environment. Guests crave choice for their in-room entertainment, expecting the same options they’ve grown accustomed to at home. Live channels, news, sports, and streaming options are just a few examples of updated entertainment options guests expect in their hotel rooms. Heightened channel offerings empower guests to choose-their-own-adventure, whether they want to pick up where they left off in a Netflix series or tune into local channels to immerse themselves in the region’s culture.
In-room entertainment goes beyond the channels provided on the guestroom TV. Guests want to binge their own shows and finally conquer the all-consuming watchlist they’ve been working on this year. The freedom to watch what they want when they want it has become an expectation amongst guests, particularly those at a boutique or luxury hotel. As a result, hotels are increasingly offering casting capabilities, increasing choice and customization for each guest, giving them the power to determine their own quality of trip. The choice of casting helps create a “home away from home” for travelers, providing information and entertainment in a flawless, convenient, and intuitive way.
Customized Channel Line-Up
Each hotel is unique, and their entertainment program should be as well. With customizable channel line-ups, there is no single template for management to follow. Channel-based selections allow hoteliers to emphasize more news or sports channels or family programming depending on the guest profile, providing an additional level of personalization. Also consider international package offerings, based on where the hotel is located and where guests are traveling from. With casting options, guests can always stream in their preferred language, but it is an added amenity when international guests can find their favorite shows and movies. This extra level of accommodation lets guests know management is listening and paying attention to exactly who is visiting the hotel.
Leveraging choice allows hoteliers to think strategically about their technology offerings. Gone are the days of offering 100 mid-tier channels with low-quality programming. It is important to deliver a core 40-channel lineup of the most popular content in addition to casting options. This setup provides the best option for their guests.
High-tech doesn’t necessarily mean high cost. In today’s climate, management is encouraged to find the best deal with the most amenities. In-room entertainment solutions and contactless interactions require a solid technology infrastructure, but hoteliers don’t need to incur exorbitant costs. Increased levels of choice mean increased opportunities to save and decide which amenities are the most important to guests. Today, there are exceptional technology providers with sophisticated, flexible in-room entertainment solutions, and vendors are willing to work with hoteliers and deliver the solution that best matches their budget.
Furthermore, by integrating the technology infrastructure into building plans, new hotels can save more on wiring and installation costs. Installing the network infrastructure during construction also ensures boutique hotels can deliver the in-room entertainment travelers want from the onset. Technology solutions are best determined through a long-term strategy that works with the property’s unique goals and aspirations.
Thoughtful Innovation and Purposeful Design
For hotels, the goal is not to install anything overly complex, which could result in diminished returns. Instead, focus on implementing an in-room entertainment system that seamlessly integrates with guests’ personal devices. Providing a touchless, familiar interface and emphasizing a reliable network connection is a cost-effective move that will benefit hotels for years to come. Current solutions for creating a sophisticated in-room entertainment experience can work over an existing network and with current televisions. This solution allows hotels to integrate their technology solutions with their existing PMS and fit within brand standards. Agnostic, third-party providers are a thoughtful solution for boutique hotels as they can keep their current televisions and existing infrastructure.
Hotels utilize space to further their image and creative character. Purposeful design sets boutique hotels apart from traditional hotel chains. According to Robert Grosz, EVP and Chief Commercial Officer of World Cinema, “Providing an excellent digital in-room experience requires a thoughtful and well-executed technology strategy. By doing this, properties can scale up their technology enhancements incrementally and extend existing business system functionality throughout every guest touch point. Having a strategic plan in place also enables properties to quickly adapt to new technology advancements and meet the ever-evolving needs of guests.”
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