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Robots lend a cyborg marketing hand to 7 California hotels

As room service deliverers, the droids have proven a draw for nearby residents, according to owner Seaview Investments.
Photograph courtesy of Relay Seaview

Like other robot adopters, hotel owner Seaview Investments speaks appreciatively of the labor benefits. But the holding company is almost as effusive about the marketing advantages.

Seaview said in a statement that bookings have increased at its seven California properties since each was outfitted with an automaton. The bump in business has come from both leisure and corporate travelers within driving distance, the holding company reported.

Perhaps not coincidentally, it also noted that “hundreds of positive videos and social media reviews” have been posted online since the droids took up residence. Many, Seaview indicated, mention the robots by name, since all seven have their own identities.

The humanoids have been particularly appreciated by children, according to the company.

The devices interact with customers in what the statement describes as “low-level tasks” such as delivering room service meals.

"Our ownership's crystal ball saw, before most hotel operators, what service robot technology could add from a marketing and operations perspective," Bob Combie, SVP of technology for the company, said in the statement. "As we recover from the pandemic, the robots also provide contact-free room service delivery, which many guests appreciate."

The Relay-brand robots are supplied by Savioke, which said its droids have delivered over 1 million meals.

The hotels (and their robots) are H Hotel and Homewood Suites, Los Angeles (Hannah); Residence Inn, Los Angeles International Airport, or LAX (Wally);  Embassy Suites, LAX North (Winnie); Courtyard, LAX (Cy); Residence Inn, Beverly Hills (Beverly); AC Hotel, Beverly Hills (Ace); and Hotel Trio, Healdsburg (Rose).

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