The Hyatt Regency Chicago: Best tech enabled hotel in the world?5 Mar, 2013 By: Esther Hertzfeld
Chicago’s largest hotel may now be the most tech-savvy hotel in the world and seems ready to handle the most digital guests, whether traveling on business or pleasure.
The Hyatt Regency Chicago, which is also the largest property that Hyatt operates worldwide, is set to unveil a $168-million renovation this April that will transform the entire property into a sleek, technology-driven oasis for travelers and locals alike.
CPA Practice Advisor reports that from the moment guests enter the hotel, they are immersed in a haven of technology, designed to optimize time, comfort, convenience and safety. Behind the tech-savvy transformation is Chicago’s AVT Event Technologies, a firm specializing in A/V services catering to the hospitality industry.
“The goal was to provide guests with approachable technology options designed to optimize their stay,” says Patrick Donelly, the hotel's GM. “From checking in, to navigating their way around the property, we’ve taken every measure to ensure productivity through technology.”
In addition to the traditional face-to-face check-in, Hyatt Regency Chicago now provides guests with the opportunity to check-in with a lobby ambassador using iPads, or with kiosks, which are strategically placed throughout the lobby.
Operating on Micros’ OPERA Property Management System platform, guests can use kiosks to select their room, inquire about upgrades and even obtain a RFID room key with the tap of a fingertip.
Hyatt Regency Chicago is the city’s largest hotel, so ensuring top-notch property security was a focused priority.
The property’s public areas are blanketed in HDMI over IP based high-megapixel cameras. Using software called Avigillon, the security team can monitor these public areas from any location on the property using their mobile devices, or from the security base.
Upon entering Hyatt Regency Chicago’s lobby, guests will have no issues navigating the property thanks to 106 large-format plasma television displays, many of which contain interactive touchscreen technology powered by FourWinds Interactive software.
Digital signage, rotated daily, guides visitors to their respective convention spaces, signifies meeting spaces, displays the weather and guides guests seamlessly to their destination.
Additionally, interactive displays featuring touchscreen technology allows guests to use Google Maps to find their way around the city, inquire about hotel services and locate meeting spaces.
With over 800 wireless access points hidden throughout the property, guests can stay “plugged-in” to business while remaining unplugged and bogged down by cords and wires. Guests can roam the property with a flawless connection to the outside world.
Other improvements include:
- The renovation of the lobby, including color changing LED lighting, light controlling louvers, new finishes on all surfaces and an art program designed to reflect and frame the river and city skyline.
- A new, sleek registration and concierge area with windows to the exterior and guest-friendly desks.
- A new 24-hour market, aptly named “Market Chicago.”
- The addition of a new lobby seating area and four re-invented restaurants.
- Completely renovated Stetsons Modern Steak + Sushi (formally named Stetson’s Chop House) with an open kitchen, sushi bar and marble fireplace.
- A re-invented BIG Bar – still located at its iconic perch above the river, but now greatly enlarged to facilitate views to the exterior. New additions include: added digital components; new lighting and sound systems; a dramatic reinvention of its renowned monumental bottle display; internally illuminated liquor tower; and new food preparation areas.
- Renovated elevator lobbies, which carry the material elements of the new design to the East and West tower areas.
- Renovated and repurposed Skybridge, including new “digital community tables,” designed to allow guests to use and charge their digital devices.
Reproduction in whole or part is prohibited.