Accessing roomservice just got a lot easier for corporate housing guests staying at the Synergy Chelsea in New York. Through a new strategic partnership between Volara and Butler Hospitality, guests staying at 232 7th Avenue can now scan a QR code on a Volara-powered Google Nest Hub to access an in-room restaurant menu on their mobile device. Foodservice items are prepared by executive chefs in one of five operating hotel hub kitchens in Manhattan and delivered directly to each unit by a uniformed butler. Rather than requiring guests to order from an online delivery service that does not background check or COVID screen drivers, Butler Hospitality’s professional butlers present orders in quality packaging designed specifically for delivery transport.
“Roomservice is a loss leader for most hotels today,” said Aaron Cohen, chief revenue officer for Butler Hospitality. “Not only are operators losing money running their kitchens, but guests are paying high prices for low quality menu items that don’t meet their expectations. We developed ‘Roomservice by Butler’ as a turnkey food-and-beverage solution that elevates the digital dining experience in hotels and corporate housing.
“Unlike other virtual roomservice programs that connect guests to local restaurants, Roomservice by Butler is a vertically integrated program that brings food that we cook ourselves in hotel kitchens that we operate exclusively for Butler patrons,” he said. “Vetted and brand-clad butlers personally deliver orders to customers in their hotel rooms or corporate apartments rather than making them go down to the lobby. For added convenience, integration between Butler technology and the facility’s property-management system enables orders to be added directly to the folio, and the property automatically receives a 10 percent revenue share from each order.”
When Synergy Global Housing was planning Its flagship Chelsea property last year, General Manager Rob Eisenberg said he wanted to feature technologies tenants use at home and the amenities found in upscale hotels. The company selected the Volara-powered solution operating on the Google Nest Hub to provide residents with an in-room, always available expert concierge. Volara’s voice-based engagement technology offers Synergy Chelsea residents on-command access to specific guest service amenities, local area recommendations, restaurants, and attractions — in-unit services Synergy identified as critical to the delivery of an exceptional guest experience.
“Synergy is redefining the traditional furnished apartment experience in New York by integrating leading technology solutions with our best-in-class serviced accommodations,” Eisenberg said. “Guest of Synergy Chelsea not only enjoy high-speed wireless Internet, IPTV, and a Bluetooth audio system, they enjoy the convenience of the Volara-powered Google voice assistant to personalize their living experience better. Volara’s partnership with Butler Hospitality takes that tailored service — one that feels like home — one step further by offering in-room voice-directed restaurant delivery service featuring upscale Manhattan cuisine at a fair price. We’re excited to provide our guests with the added ease and hospitality of high quality, fresh food, cooked on demand delivered to their front door.”
Volara provides platform agnostic voice-based conversation management software and a secure integrations hub to existing property technologies. Its software turns the major natural language processing platforms into a business tool that drives more efficient customer service.
Butler Hospitality provides in-room restaurant delivery to 140 properties in New York representing 137,000 keys. The Butler delivery zone serves all of Manhattan below 96th St. and John F. Kennedy International Airport. Service will be extended to LaGuardia Airport in February 2021. Due to high demand, the five-year-old company is expanding its service to the Washington, D.C., Chicago, and Miami markets, and they hope to be in an additional 10 cities by the end of 2021.
“When I first met with the Synergy team, I asked Rob about his business objectives and why he wanted to implement voice at Synergy Chelsea,” said David Berger, Volara CEO. “His answer was simple: ‘We see voice as an opportunity to facilitate and personalize the experiences of guests in our serviced apartments. It’s something we believe will enhance a person’s stay and differentiate our offering.’ Today, through our partnership with Butler Hospitality, we are enabling Synergy Global Housing to further enhance their resident experiences through the revenue generating Roomservice by Butler program — one that is truly pioneering a COVID-safe delivery process for short- and long-term guests.”
Volara is working with Synergy Global Housing and Butler Hospitality to bring Roomservice by Butler to more of the company’s corporate housing locations throughout Manhattan, including the Financial District, Greenwich Village, and Times Square. Likewise, Butler Hospitality hopes to expand its program to hotels that are voice-enabling their guest services with a Volara-powered Google Nest Hub.