- Updated on 15.02.24 -

Read how you can make welcoming and communicating with your guests more personal in this blog piece.

Huge flatscreen televisions, inductive charging near nightstands, digital solutions, smart air-conditioning systems, pancake vending machines, and much more are available at the Best Western Hotel Arabellapark in Munich, one of the most modern midscale hotels in Germany. It makes state-of-the-art the new norm, so having the 8-inch SuitePad tablets is fitting: guest portfolio, digital guest communication, telephone, remote control, and so on… all on a single touchscreen device. If you decide to go smart, then go all in, right?

Right by the English Garden: Digital Intelligence in Alpine Chic

Rooms at Best Western Hotel Arabellapark MunichThe recently opened 3-star superior hotel Best Western Hotel Arabellapark is located in a popular Munich area close to the English Garden, in the renowned urban district of Arabellapark. The midscale hotel is operated by Best Western and managed by Unitels Consulting GmbH. It represents a chic lifestyle combined with some Bavarian flair. The guests of the hotel are made up of modern-minded business travelers and city tourists. And what lies behind the eye-catching honeycomb-structure facade, you ask? A spacious lobby, stylish bar, beer garden patio, and fully air-conditioned double and single rooms that have everything you need.

When the Best Western Hotel Arabellapark opened in September 2021, SuitePad tablets were already available in the rooms; they were there from the very beginning. "It is important to reflect the developments in our society, especially in our industry. We saw the purchase of the SuitePads as a good investment for the future and this decision has proven to be successful. Most of our guests are business travelers. On weekends and during vacations, many families come too. Both groups of guests are already very digital in their everyday lives. This is a good fit," explains Lena Elbracht, Assistant Front Office Manager at the Best Western in Munich.

A digital service: promoting guest independence & increasing guest loyalty

There is a SuitePad in every room, which amounts to 220 tablets in total. The touchscreen promotes effective browsing and an all-in-one service: internal communication platform, telephone, information center, gaming, remote control. Guests entering their room can use the haptically high-quality, award-winning SuitePad in-room tablet to order, among other things, an additional pillow, book breakfast, initiate a wake-up call, cancel room cleaning, load the best jogging routes around Arabellapark, check subway times, play solitaire, and control their TV flatscreen.

Service requests can be made directly on the SuitePad tablet. Guests can use the latter to chat to the front desk and ask for an extra blanket, for example. And using push messages from the back-end, the front desk can respond immediately and notify housekeeping to bring the guest the requested item, keeping communication between hotel departments digital. The same may be said for the wake-up call. Guests can choose to be woken up by SMS on their smartphone, by a phone call on the SuitePad tablet or by the hotel telephone. This eliminates the need for additional hardware and software costs for the room telephone, and the hotel can take advantage of another function of the tablet.

The SuitePad tablet’s functionalities are projected to considerably ease the burden of time-consuming and never-ending organization, providing more peace and more time for lengthier, personal conversations at the reception desk. It definitely saves time when fewer guests visit the front desk for routine inquiries, such as booking a breakfast slot later in the day. The SuitePad handles this task and relieves the reception team. Thanks to its intuitive menu navigation, guests can book breakfast from the comfort of their own room. They just need to click on the “Breakfast” tile and they’re on their way to easy delicious morning meals. Those bookings then instantly display on the hotel’s digital booking system, allowing the staff to have a clear view of all up-to-date bookings. This way, miscommunications between hotel employees becomes impossible. "Thanks to the many service requests that now come in digitally and instantaneously, we have more time for guests who come to us with more complex questions," adds Lena Elbracht.

Unmatched service with digital technology

SuitePad Tablets with the installation of Best Western Hotel Arabellapark MunichLena Elbracht and the SuitePad content team created the graphic installation for the tablets together. They paid close attention to detail in accordance with the hotel’s corporate identity and provided all the necessary tiles and information for the guests of the Munich Best Western, including subway schedules, sightseeing recommendations, event lineups and more. In addition to the plethora of information provided, guests can download most of the content onto their own devices via QR code and consume it outside of the hotel. But the digital service doesn’t stop there - the hotel’s sustainability ideals can also be effectively communicated to guests. They may opt out of room cleaning with a single click and receive a free drink at the hotel bar as a reward. After all, not every guest needs a new towel every day, especially if they are only staying for a few days. This "Green Option" tile on the tablet provides the hotel and its guests with the opportunity to act in a more sustainable and ecological manner. According to this Best Western hotel, this is a very popular option.

The SuitePad replaces old school operations

Reception at Best Western Hotel Arabellapark MunichThe hotel’s experience with the SuitePad remote control has also been favorable. The front desk staff mentions during check-in that the TV flatscreen is controlled by the SuitePad, and they find that the younger guests are always pleased with this service as it makes them feel more at home in their hotel room. Aside from being a cutting-edge piece of equipment in the room, it is also far more hygienic. The SuitePad, like standard remote controls, uses infrared signals to change the channels on the television. This technology is well-known and simple to use, and regular guests make extensive use of it. "For some guests, using it still takes a little getting used to, but regular guests and families in particular appreciate the digital convenience," confirms Lena Elbracht.

This positive experience with the device will be further developed in the following months. There is a plan in the works to provide an independent check-out process for guests. Those who want a quick check-out no longer have to go through reception; instead, they can manage the billing details on the SuitePad and receive everything on their private email address. “ The SuitePad provides a convenient, quick and easy digital service for our guests; it is considerably more sanitary than the old guest folder, far more cost effective for us, and more modern than classic room equipment. And, its simple interface is easily understandable. Our guests use it frequently, which also makes our day-to-day reception work easier,” summarizes Lena Elbracht.

(Photo credits: Best Western Hotel Arabellapark Munich & SuitePad)

- Published on June 9, 2022

Jacqueline Koch

Jacqueline Koch

As a freelance journalist, Jacqueline writes about the latest architecture, design, and smart home trends and their impact on hospitality.

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