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Novotel finds their recently launched Virtual Concierge solution to be a big success with guests and staff.

One month after implementing the first phase of a global virtual concierge roll-out, Novotel has noted significant increases in guests’ satisfaction levels. They also report high levels of adoption across all target demographics. Comments have been made by guests on social media sites complementing the hotels on their “cool” new technology.

The first 100 hotels of 400 total properties are currently in a phased roll out. Hotels on three continents have curated content to provide their guests with information about the very best that their hotel has to offer, and insider tips about the local surroundings. The Virtual Concierge will also provide local maps, flight information, weather, news and connectivity to social media to send localised postcards.

The imminent introduction of fully synchronized mobile platforms that guests can download for free will further enhance Novotel’s ability to connect with their clients through the entirety of their journey.

This rapid implementation has been achieved using the Monscierge software framework which enables hotel groups to provide uniform, branded content alongside local hotel information in a single flexible and scalable platform.

“The Monscierge framework is the most advanced we’ve seen,” claims David Esseryk, Accor VP of consumer technology. “The system is much more than multilingual. It is a feature rich, multi-region ecosystem that has localised content and functionality far superior to anything else on the market. The synchronisation across multiple types of hardware / guest touch points is seamless.”

With Monscierge’s product line having been built with a flexible framework, Accor is looking ahead to deploying further new technology in 2014.

“This solution is powerful and our customers love it. The system is very fluid and flexible in particular for content updates.” says Sabine Kadyss, Novotel brand & services director.

Unigest Inc

Uniguest, a leading technology provider to the global hospitality industry, has announced the roll-out of U-Sign, an easy-to-use digital signage system developed expressly for hotels that enables information to be displayed on wireless and wired digital display panels and computers

U-Sign enables data to be entered once and then displayed on an unlimited number of devices simultaneously and selectively, based on predetermined criteria, according to Joseph Moore, Uniguest’s chief technology officer. For example, a message about a school group’s meeting could be excluded from displays in the hotel’s lounge, he said.

“Unlike other providers that piece together off-the-shelf equipment and software, Uniguest developed an integrated, purpose-built system that is simple to use and far less expensive,” Moore said. “U-Sign is as easy to use as a tablet computer, with what-you-see-is-what-you-get graphics that show exactly how the remote digital signs will appear.”

At the heart of U-Sign is the Unicore content management system, which presents relevant and timely information that supports each hotel’s respective branding and business standards. Unicore enables the same messages to be displayed anywhere in the hotel – on digital signs, business center workstations and concierge tablets, among others.

In addition to displaying messages about in-house meetings and events, flight status and weather, hotels can use U-Sign to promote profit centers including restaurants, lounges and spas, Moore said. Hoteliers also can generate revenue by offering advertising to local business that wish to market their products or services to hotel guests.

“Since it was built by hospitality experts expressly for the industry, U-Sign provides hoteliers with everything they need and nothing they don’t, and all for a price point that reflects this singular focus,” he said. “Operating expenses are minimised because the system can be operated by hotel staff without the support of on-site technicians.”

iRiS Software Systems

iRiS Software Systems, the award-winning, multi-lingual, interactive hospitality applications provider, has unveiled its new brand application aimed at multi-tenanted hotel, apartment and cruise line organisations.

Taking customer engagement to a new level, the iRiS Brand App enables a customer to access all hotels, cruise ships or apartments within a group/brand, search for and book a room, make advance requests, log in to their loyalty scheme, redeem points and more. Once checked in, the customer becomes a guest with the ability to view relevant content, make service orders such as in-room dining, and share content. It also enables communication post-stay.

“This has always been on our road-map, and we are being approached by existing and new groups for exactly this. Multi-tenanted companies need to engage pre, during and post stay but still have the process personalised” commented Jason Jefferys, CEO of iRiS Software Systems.

The Brand App has been designed to connect with the hotel during the guest’s stay through iRiS’ Mobile Valet or Mobile Concierge. The booking is recognised and the appropriate in-resort app is available immediately on the guest’s device. The app can integrate into both the owner’s current booking app or iRiS can offer an end-to-end solution.

The benefits of having a single brand app are significant, pre-stay and during. The app manages multiple properties with integration into the CMS. This ensures single entry for content, reduced effort at property level and consistency across the brand. Properties can communicate messages such as offers and promotions to all users within a hotel group, or to users from individual properties within the group for localised promotions.


Panasonic will showcase a wide range of new integrated business technologies including digital signage at this year’s HITEC. The company’s hospitality digital signage offerings on display included:

• LRU60 Series: Panasonic’s new Energy Star-rated LED line of high-definition hospitality TVs are available in 32-, 39-, 42-, 50- and ultra-thin bezel 65-inch models, for lobbies, lounges and luxury suites.

• LF60 Series: The LF60 Series, available in 55-inch, 47-inch and 42-inch models, features 700 cd/m2 of brightness, making the LED displays easily visible even in spaces with high levels of ambient light, the company said. The LF60 Series is equipped with Digital Link, a feature that when connected to a compatible switcher, makes it possible to transmit AV content and control signals via a single CAT5e cable or higher, up to 328ft.

• Panasonic Interactive Displays: Panasonic Interactive Displays increase collaboration and foster idea sharing by combining whiteboard-style collaborative functions with Panasonic’s high definition displays. These displays are intended to be an ideal tool for staff training, boardrooms as well as hotel meeting rooms. The PB1 Series, available in 103-inch and 85-inch, delivers interactivity in large format, while the PB2 Series, available in 65-inch and 50-inch, features both pen and finger touch capability. These displays feature a Digital Pen System, which enables users to write, annotate and move items around the screen with pixel by pixel accuracy.

“Now more than ever, hotels and resorts are under pressure to meet growing guest service expectations, both in the guest room and throughout the property,” said Scott Anderson, senior business development manager, hospitality, Panasonic System Communications Company of North America. “These solutions will help hotels manage costs, increase productivity, improve the guest experience while gaining the best return on investment possible.”

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