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How AI-Enabled IAQ Insights Improve Guest Experiences

With guests increasingly prioritizing health and safety, hoteliers need to demand innovative solutions to create safer indoor environments.

The air we breathe often goes unnoticed when staying at hotels, but clean, fresh air can profoundly impact our stay. With guests increasingly prioritizing health and safety — 77% consider a hotel’s air quality in deciding where to stay, and 52% would be willing to pay more to stay at a hotel with better air quality — hoteliers demand innovative solutions to create safer indoor environments.

Enter artificial intelligence-enabled indoor air quality, or IAQ, insights. As AI transforms applications across industries, decision-makers across the hospitality sector operate in a new era at the convergence of cutting-edge technological advancement and the never-ending pursuit of guest well-being. 

Let’s dive into how unhealthy indoor air can pose a silent threat to guest well-being and why AI-enabled IAQ insights are redefining the guest experience by ensuring pristine air quality.


The Harmful Impact of Unhealthy Indoor Air

When travelers enter a hotel, they expect a safe, clean, and comfortable place to stay — a temporary home away from home. In our increasingly health-conscious era, hospitality leaders must rethink strategies to ensure guest safety. Traditional measures like housekeeping and regular sanitation are industry norms, but what about the air we breathe? The COVID-19 pandemic heightened awareness of airborne transmission, prompting rising scrutiny of indoor air quality.

As hotel “frequent flyers” and staff are both aware, various environmental factors can impact different areas of a hotel differently. Few things can reduce a guest’s comfort level than a noticeable shift in atmosphere between rooms of a building. Public spaces like lobbies and restaurants, where controlled air is frequently compromised by outside air pollution as traffic moves in and out of the room, are common areas for apparent changes in air quality. Restaurants are often considered areas of poor air quality due to deficient circulation and fumes escaping from uncontained cooking stations. While safety standards have improved significantly in recent decades, hotel restaurants can frequently contain less than stellar air quality. 

The following airborne pollutants can go unnoticed by the naked eye and often contaminate indoor air:

  • Bacteria, viruses and allergens.
  • Particulate matter.
  • Volatile organic compounds, or VOCs.
  • Mold and mildew.
  • Carbon dioxide (CO2). 
  • Pollen.
  • Wildfire smoke.
  • Ozone

These contaminants can trigger allergies, exacerbate respiratory issues, cause headaches and decreased cognitive function, interfere with sleep quality and even lead to long-term health risks. 

AI holds the key to unlocking a solution for the IAQ challenge in hotels. By utilizing AI-driven programs that control independent rooms based on air quality and humidity fluctuations, hotels can regularly provide clean air to guests, even when outdoor air quality is potentially harmful.

Harnessing AI for IAQ Insights


Studies show that exemplary IAQ can improve a guest's cognitive function, improving the memory of their stay and increasing the likelihood of rebooking in the future. Ensuring good to excellent levels of IAQ can indirectly improve business performance by enhancing a customer’s stay.

By integrating advanced sensors, machine learning algorithms and real-time data analysis, AI-powered IAQ solutions provide unprecedented visibility into air quality conditions, monitoring pollutants, humidity, temperature and even outdoor conditions to generate actionable information that empowers decision-makers to make informed adjustments.

When hotels enhance guest safety by leveraging IAQ solutions with AI capabilities, that commitment to providing cleaner and healthier air means guests are more likely to stay at those brands. Beyond safety, AI-driven IAQ insights can enhance operational efficiencies by enabling predictive maintenance for HVAC systems, optimizing energy consumption and reducing costs in near real time. 


A significant challenge with monitoring and affecting IAQ is the compartmentalization of hotels and large commercial spaces. These spaces require a specialized approach tailored to their specific conditions. AI proves invaluable in situations such as this. Utilizing AI to understand that conference rooms may need optimal ventilation during a meeting and guest rooms require adjusted conditions for comfort during sleep can help decision-makers create guest-approved environments throughout the property. To achieve this, the optimal solution will combine advanced air purifier devices with a comprehensive management platform to deliver a smart, connected air purification solution that continuously monitors indoor air quality and provides safe air. 


Another area where customer satisfaction can often be improved comes from room humidity. Occasionally, guests may feel that their hotel room is too dry, leaving them with cracked lips and dry throats in the morning. When integrated into IAQ monitoring systems, AI can independently monitor and adjust humidity levels in systems that include dehumidifiers alongside air purifiers.

As the hospitality industry evolves, the integration of AI technology is poised to transform IAQ management for the better.


The Future of IAQ in Hotels


Forward-thinking companies developing advanced IAQ monitoring solutions have already placed similar systems in San Francisco’s Intercontinental hotel and similar hospitality businesses. In their efforts to improve guest experiences by advancing health and safety standards in their establishments, hoteliers must not overlook IAQ. Air quality monitoring tools appear to be gaining steam, improving the conditions of hotel rooms – from meeting spaces and fitness centers to spas and lobby areas – and guest stays across the board. 

From real-time monitoring to data-driven insights, AI empowers hoteliers to proactively address IAQ concerns and provide safer and more comfortable guest experiences across every room. With the right management platform, hotels and restaurants can manage a fleet of purifiers, automate their response to air quality issues, and share air quality insights with customers and employees.

About the Author

Gene Ehrbar is VP of Product at Molekule Inc. Over the course of his career, Gene has led teams within startups and established companies to build groundbreaking products and meaningful relationships with customers.

Currently, Gene leads a product team responsible for Molekule’s line of connected air purifiers, including the development of connected devices and the software and services that support them. Before joining Molekule, Gene led the Engagement Platform team in Comcast's Connected Living organization, where he focused on improving the customer experience through personalized mobile app experiences for connected home customers.

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