Technology

Guests Use Their Smartphones to Check In, Unlock Room Doors

[GreenvilleOnline.com]

The Aloft hotel in New York is testing room-opening technology with guests using their own smartphones as keys. (Starwood Hotels/AP)
The Aloft hotel in New York is testing room-opening technology with guests using their own smartphones as keys. (Starwood Hotels/AP)

Travelers staying at select Starwood Hotels and Resorts will soon be able to unlock their hotel rooms with their smartphones.

The Aloft Harlem in New York and Aloft Cupertino in California will be the first to try the technology, powered by Assa Abloy, a lock company in Sweden. The pilot program will begin within the next 60 days, says Brian McGuinness, senior vice president of Starwood’s Specialty Select brands.

If it goes well, guests will see the new process roll out at three Starwood brands — Aloft, Element and W Hotels — by 2015.

“In a world where digital tech is only getting smaller, cheaper, more ubiquitous, we need to see how tech is changing what our guests want — and keep pace,” Starwood CEO Frits Paasschen said during a presentation at the annual American Lodging Investment Summit in Los Angeles.

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