Sonoma Hotel MacArthur Place upgrades operations with mobile messaging

MacArthur Place, a hotel and spa in Sonoma, Calif., has selected hotel technology platform Alice to upgrade its operations and provide convenience to guests through mobile messaging. The hotel is using Alice’s full suite of products - Alice guest, Alice concierge, and Alice staff - for their guests, concierge, and staff departments respectively.

MacArthur Place, a 64-room, historic Wine Country estate, was looking for a way to text message with guests when they came across Alice. Recognized as one of the "World's Best" Hotels in Condé Nast Traveler's annual Reader's Choice Awards, MacArthur Place has always viewed innovation in the guest offering and an outstanding guest experience as highly intertwined. The hotel was the first hotel in the region to offer their guests Wi-Fi, as well as the first to offer electric car charging stations, and MacArthur's executive team sought guest messaging as a way to differentiate their hotel even further by improving the accessibility of their offerings and amenities with a technology already familiar and beloved by guests.

As the executive team anticipated, guests at MacArthur Place are delighted with how easy text messaging makes it to communicate directly with the hotel. And importantly, the hotel's staff are impressed with how seamlessly responding to guest texts fits into their operations, now that they're managing their work on the Alice platform. Because MacArthur moved their task management from its PMS to Alice, adding another guest engagement channel, like texting, doesn't burden the hotel's staff with an additional technology system. When a text comes in from a guest, staff are notified and can respond right away in Alice, dispatching requests or follow up work orders to their colleagues without switching to a different system or radio-ing out.

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Guest messaging is proving particularly useful for MacArthur's staff and guests when it comes to communicating whether or not a guest's room is ready for check-in. As Kevin Virgo, MacArthur's director of operations described it, communication between guest and staff was particularly fraught when it came to this specific issue.

Prior to Alice, guests would call the front desk prior to arrival to find out whether or not their room was ready. This required a lot of sleuthing by staff behind the scenes, while the guest was placed on hold. Now, the front desk can just text the guest when the room is ready, giving guests peace of mind, and alleviating anxiety for staff. Other popular use cases for texting on property include quick confirmation of dinner reservations from the concierge, as well as leveraging the personal, real-time nature of the medium for guest recovery - something that's really resonating with guests.

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