A British hotel used its latest conference to show off the hotel trends of the future.
Virgin Hotels has claimed that having access to free Wi-Fi everywhere in a hotel should be a basic right for guests, but as it gets ready to roll out this service in its new hotels in 2015, other brands are starting to look even further into the future to show us what guests will be calling for more of in just a few years time.
British hotel chain Best Western, which has more than 280 hotels across the country, has held its latest annual conference, at which it had a number of showrooms to display what it believes we will see in the future in terms of the technology in hotel rooms.
Best Western was the first hotel chain in the UK to introduce free Wi-Fi as a standard for its guests, but apparently it does not want to be left behind, and is even looking to be ahead of the curve in terms of giving guests the most high tech and well-rounded experience possible.
So what does Best Western think we’ll all be seeing more of as we travel around the world in the next few years?
So we’re still dealing with the advent of Wi-Fi in the hotels sector, but already Best Western is looking to the next stage – Li-Fi. This technology transmits data through the lights in the room rather than having to rely on traditional routers for wireless connections.
This sees rapid changes in light intensity to send data wirelessly to laptops and other devices, giving people in each room unobstructed access to the internet throughout the hotel.
This is something we’re seeing more and more in restaurants these days – some McDonald’s even now have tablets that people use to order, but video tables could soon be a reality in hotel rooms. They would allow hotel guests to order specific services and items from their room, as well as customizing menu items.
These will also allow customers the chance to pay through the table as soon as the order is sent through directly to the kitchen or reception, which removes the need for them to add it to their final bill at the end of their stay.
Other hotel tech
As well as these large changes to the way hotels operate, Best Western also brought a number of other pieces to the table to show us what sort of things hotels of the future may be populated with.
These included things like a coffee machine in the room that remembers exactly how you like your drinks, virtual reality headsets in place of the standard TV, tables that can wirelessly charge phones and check in processes that work through simply scanning a QR code, all of which will have advantages over time both for guests and hotels.