Imagining the Future of Hospitality
Think about the last time you stayed at a hotel. You likely checked in at the front desk, settled into your room, leafed through the plethora of pamphlets and menus, and called the front desk to order more of [insert anything here]. Unless you were at a 5-star resort, nothing about this is particularly special or what we think of as great hospitality.
Now imagine walking into a hotel, and making your way to a virtual concierge that checks you in and sends some interesting information to your phone. Then you head to your room where only a smart device is present – no phone, no pamphlets, no menus. You simply ask to open the curtains. Then you ask to book a spa appointment at 2PM the following day. Then you ask for an additional set of towels. Then… you can tell where this is going. All the while your trusty assistant is ready to answer any question, route any request, and play you any of your favorite Beyonce songs. Does that sound special?
The pipes of that future reality are being laid now, and RAIN has had the good fortune of being at the forefront with one of the best in the business, Wynn Las Vegas and Encore Resort.
RAIN + Wynn
As a leader in hospitality and guest satisfaction, Wynn Las Vegas and Encore Resort saw the opportunity to utilize voice technology to not only to enhance the guest experience, but also optimize staff experience by creating an in-room Alexa voice concierge.
Thankfully Amazon had already been hard at work solidifying its Alexa for Hospitality (A4H) offering, which provides device fleet management to build Alexa capabilities at scale, and can simplify tasks for guests like playing music, checking the weather, calling the front desk, ordering room service, controlling in-room temperature or lighting, and even checking out. Using A4H, hospitality companies can provide immersive experiences to increase revenues, reduce costs, and improve guest satisfaction.
RAIN expanded on Wynn’s original brief using these new A4H features enabling Wynn to have more control of their devices and paving the way to integrate a suite of back office systems in the future. In the end, the Wynn implementation ended up being one of the largest for Amazon to date, not just in terms of number of rooms and devices (over 4,000!), but in scope of ability to answer over 200 questions across the vast services provided to guests.
Wynn soft-launched the experience in January of this year in the 4,000+ rooms of the Wynn Las Vegas and Encore Resort without any promotion to guests. The result? The concierge still saw thousands of uses a day. Even with no guidance, guests felt comfortable and confident asking their in-room Alexa concierge any number of questions and trusted they’d receive a meaningful response.
You may be thinking, what’s the big deal? The concierge just answers questions.
Think about it this way: each use equated to a question that a physical staff member did not have to answer, enabling them to focus fully on guest experience, an obvious priority at a resort like Wynn. In fact, according to a Wynn VP of Operations, before the COVID pandemic spread significantly in the US, Alexa was answering more than 12,000 inquiries a month about hours of operations for the Wynn’s 18 bars and restaurants, spas, and workout facilities. He stated that if you split that number in half, that’s the equivalent of a full-time employee.
Now it’s easy to see why even just a simple version of the concierge is so valuable to the resort. And the guest satisfaction piece? That worked out well.
According to a 40,000+ guest survey conducted by Alexa and Wynn in February 2020, Wynn guests overwhelmingly found Alexa easy and pleasing to use. 85.6% found the system easy or very easy to use, and 83.7% were happy or very happy with the service.
Additionally, and this is a big one, 66.8% of the guest survey respondents went on to say they would request a room with Alexa service. Almost 7 out of 10 people would opt for a hospitality experience that includes an always-on in-room concierge.
As a result of the Alexa in-room concierge success and a newly prioritized focus on touchless interfaces, RAIN is now integrating additional features, such as restaurant reservations, which will go live toward the end of 2020.
Get in Touch. As one of just a few A4H top skill developer partners, RAIN is well positioned to bring your hotel or resort’s immersive voice experience to life. Get in touch at email@example.com or subscribe to our newsletter, Voice on Voice, which goes out to over 12,000 industry professionals.