If receiving a room delivery from a robot sounds interesting, the tech-forward Aloft Hotels enhance the hotels’ current technological offerings with the hotel’s first Botlr. The robotic butler is a charismatic cyber associate making his debut at Aloft Cupertino, the first major hotel brand to hire a robot for both front and back of house duties. Professionally “dressed” in a custom shrink-wrapped, vinyl collared uniform and nametag, A.L.O. will modestly accept tweets as tips as its wheels whizz from task to task.
“As you can imagine, hiring for this particular position was a challenge as we were seeking a very specific set of automated skills, and one that could work – literally – around the clock,” said Brian McGuinness, Global Brand Leader, Starwood’s Specialty Select Brands. “As soon as A.L.O. entered the room, we knew it was what we were looking for. A.L.O. has the work ethic of Wall-E, the humor of Rosie from The Jetsons and reminds me of my favorite childhood robot, R2-D2. We are excited to have it join our team.”
Prior to its role at Aloft, A.L.O. studied at Savioke – a new company which the robotics community has been eagerly anticipating for this first class of robots – where it double majored in rudimentary tasks and hospitality. Transitioning to its new role as Botlr, A.L.O. will now facilitate and prioritize multiple guest deliveries, communicate effortlessly with guests and various hotel platforms, as well as efficiently navigate throughout the property – including the elevator – with ease. The appointment of A.L.O. represents yet another forward-looking milestone for Aloft, known for its industry-first smart check-in program, “Cool Concierge” program and piloting Apple TV in-room services.
“We are thrilled to introduce our robot to the world today through our relationship with Aloft Hotels,” according to Steve Cousins, CEO of Savioke. “In our early testing, all of us at Savioke have seen the look of delight on those guests who receive a room delivery from a robot. We’ve also seen the front desk get busy at times, and expect Botlr will be especially helpful at those times, freeing up human talent to interact with guests on a personal level.”
A.L.O. officially reports for duty on August 20 at Aloft Cupertino, with several new Botlrs to join in the upcoming months.