More upmarket hotels adding in-room tablets

Increasingly, upmarket hotels are providing their guests with in-room tablets for their use during their stay. Those tablets can range from the familiar iPad to proprietary hardware and software, all loaded with apps intended to enhance the guest’s experience and offer more options to interact with the specific property or the hotel chain.

London’s Lanesborough hotel, which reopened in July after a 19-month, multi-million-pound renovation, is among the latest to add tablet technology to its guest rooms. The Lanesborough, which overlooks Hyde Park, is one of London’s most historic hotels, originally built in the mid-18th century. As part of the refurbishment, the hotel selected tablets provided by Crave Interactive for all 93 of its guest rooms and suites.

“In-room tablets and other guest-facing technology solutions have become essential features for luxury hotels, even those that with a strong heritage element to their branding,” Gareth Hughes, Crave CEO, said in a statement provided to TheTravelPro. The tablets allow for instant in-room food and beverage ordering, check-in and check-out, communication with guests as well as instantly updateable digital directories and menus, according to the manufacturer. The tablets are customizable, and additional features added to the Crave tablets specifically for the Lanesborough include a call function for the personal butler service, wireless keyboards, Bluetooth speakers and printing capabilities.

For its part, the hotel’s managing director noted that in-room tablets have become a necessary feature for luxury hotels. In-room tablets can replace paper directories and make it considerably easier for guests to utilize in-house services including spa treatments, restaurant reservations and other services.

In addition to the added guest convenience, the tablets also provide the hotel “limitless scope for additional sales and tailored in-room advertising,” the manufacturer noted, hinting at the end game, which is to increase sales and revenue.

While neither the company nor the hotel provided figures for the revenue attributable to in-house tablets, the tablets are being widely used. Nearly all guests engage with its in-room tablets, viewing an average of approximately 50 pages per guest night, the manufacturer said.

Look for in-room tablets to be popping up all over the world. Just one of many providers of such devices, Crave Interactive has contracted to supply its tablets to new hotels in St. Lucia, Costa Rica, Palm Springs, Beverly Hills and Las Vegas, as well as other hotels across the U.K.

Perhaps they will be coming soon to a hotel room near you.

Visit my main page at for more news, reviews, and personal observations on the world of upmarket travel.

Photo provided by Crave Interactive
Click photo to view larger size image