FlyZoo Hotel by Alibaba: Fully Automated Hospitality
There’s a lot that can mar a five-star experience, be it long queues at check-in, lost keycards, or slow bellhops. FlyZoo Hotel bypasses all of these hospitality-hiccups, creating a seamless artificial intelligence-backed experience. It is a brainchild of e-commerce giant, Alibaba Group Holdings and its various business units, including Figgy, Alibaba A.I. Labs, and Alibaba Cloud. Located in Hangzhou, FlyZoo Hotel leverages cutting-edge technology to revolutionize hospitality.
FlyZoo Hotel was ideated as a response to climbing labor costs and a lack of uniformity in hospitality services. The brand new hotel is automated and geared towards future travelers. Facial recognition software automatically opens doors and allow check-ins and check-outs.
Sleek, high-tech robots serve as the receptionists, concierge, and staff. The one-meter high robot ‘Genie’ follows guests around, takes orders, delivers meals and toiletries, picks up laundry, and responds to voice command, touch, and gestures. These features are meant to increase efficiency and reduce basic human errors and interactions, although the kitchen and cleaning staff are still human.
While Flyzoo is the first complete, fully AI-equipped hotel, there are other players in the hospitality sector that have ventured into the field before. Beijing’s InterContinental Hotel partnered with Baidu, China’s Google, to allow guests to turn on the television, search for nearby tourist attractions and adjust room temperatures through a voice-controlled, AI-powered assistant.
According to the CEO of Alibaba Future Hotel, Anday Wang, the FlyZoo Hotel represents Alibaba’s endeavor to marry hospitality with technology, and ultimately inspire and empower the tourism industry to embrace innovation. The use of intelligent facilities coupled with digital management and operational systems means that hotel employees can focus on providing guests with a level of service that goes the extra mile.
Bookings have been open since December 2018, and a night’s stay will set you back 1,399 yuan ($208.57). But that’s a small price to pay for a taste of the future. Don’t you agree?