Outrigger upgrading property technology offerings

Outrigger Hospitality Group is in the process of upgrading its technology offerings, which started with the Waikiki Beachcomber by Outrigger’s modernization.

“We’re not only doing a physical transformation of our properties, but we’re also repositioning them,” explained Michael Shaff, VP, hotel operations for Outrigger’s Waikiki and Guam properties. “Having the best offerings in a guest technology package is a big part of that.”

Starting at the Beachcomber, that package includes mobile apps for finding information and interacting with hotel staff, a digital concierge kiosk for exploring what Hawaii has to offer, and a network of smart, in-room TVs from LG Business Solutions USA designed to make guests feel at home.

In the Beachcomber’s new activities lounge and concierge desk, a video wall comprising four large-screen LG digital signage displays and an LG touchscreen digital kiosk welcomes guests. When they enter the lounge, the display installation helps them discover new experiences they can explore on the island.

“Guests walk up to the kiosk and answer a series of six questions,” Shaff said. “At the conclusion of the questionnaire, the system creates and shows them a custom video of what their Hawaiian vacation could look like.”

And when they’re not exploring the beauty outside the resort, they can relax back at the hotel and enjoy the same level of entertainment they would at home, the company reports.

“We want guests to have the best, most seamless entertainment experience in our rooms,” he said. “These days, that means watching whatever they want to watch on TV, including through their smartphones and mobile devices. Whether they want to watch Netflix or Amazon Prime Video, it’s like they are experiencing their TV at home.”

Each of the Beachcomber’s nearly 500 guestrooms include a 55-in. smart hotel TV. The TVs are so slim—with virtually no bezel—that Shaff said many of the Beachcomber’s rooms were designed so the TVs could be mounted on the wall, some even framed, to give guests more physical space in which to enjoy themselves.

The series of LG hospitality TVs used come with Pro:Idiom technology, a digital rights management solution for protecting video content as it travels from the hotel’s head-end system to the in-room TVs. In addition, because the LG UT770H is a smart TV, it runs its own LG webOS operating system, giving it added capabilities, such as displaying custom content and information, enabling in-room purchases from the TV and allowing guests to “cast” their favorite streaming media from their devices to the LG TV.

“There is other technology out there that lets guests log into their Netflix account through the TV remote, for example, but you can imagine what that experience is like,” said Henry Schwartz, VP/chief information officer, Outrigger Hospitality Group.

With its hundreds of integrated LG smart TVs as the network foundation, Outrigger adopted technology from LG solutions partner SONIFI to create the in-room experience it sought. “With SONIFI running over our LG TVs, we’re delivering the in-room guest entertainment, a paperless hotel compendium, video channels with hotel information, and fielding guest requests,” Schwartz said. “We’re also rolling out Staycast across our properties, which is the technology that lets guests watch their personal content on the LG smart TVs.”