Florida resort adopts Opera Cloud

Guy Harvey Resort St. Augustine Beach is preparing to roll out its mobile app, which will enable mobile check-in and function as a hotel room key. Photo credit: Oracle

The Guy Harvey Resort St. Augustine Beach (Fla.) switched to Oracle’s Opera Cloud. Named after the renowned conservationist with a passion for sea life, the property made the switch after having to prove that it had not been hacked.

“Securing our guest data and our guest information is the utmost importance to us,” Larry Collier, director of hotel operations for HI Development, which manages the resort, said in a statement. “We were very fortunate that we didn’t have a security breach. But the complexity of proving that we didn’t have one was quite costly and quite exhaustive ... to deliver the necessary test results to the credit card company and the bankcard provider to show that it wasn’t us. That pushed us harder to move to the cloud.”

After going live in cloud three months ago, the hotelier reports enhanced guest experiences, including faster, better check-ins; increased staff productivity and satisfaction; and accelerated innovation. Due to Opera Cloud’s open application programming interfaces, best-of-breed technologies can be integrated quickly and simply regardless of where they originate.

“If you can’t change at the same pace our customer is changing at you’re going to find yourself very quickly irrelevant in any industry—especially ours,” Collier said. “One of the things about being on the cloud is, it’s limitless, it’s scalable, it can grow. It can do things that we as hoteliers have never been able to do before.

“We’re discovering new technologies and new ways to do things that are not only improving our operational efficiencies, which is straight-to-the-bottom-line money, but they’re also enhancing our guest experiences.”

The resort, for example, is soon expecting to roll out its mobile app, which will enable mobile check-in and function as a hotel room key, all of which will be integrated with Opera Cloud.

Though making such a platform transition is bound to cause apprehension, Collier said he was able to gain staff buy-in, in part, because of Opera Cloud’s intuitive user interface. Ease of use, less training time and greater opportunities to engage guests, rather than focusing on key strokes or staring at complicated screens, were major selling points.

The resort also purchased its first Simphony Cloud point of sale to orchestrate its hotel food-and-beverage business as well as its entire retail operation. 

In addition, HI Development has authorized an Opera Cloud roll-out at a second property, which, like all its hotels, are full service with bars, restaurants and meeting space.