Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality in Smart Hotels: A New Dimension of Guest Experience

By Srikanth
5 Min Read
Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality in Smart Hotels: A New Dimension of Guest Experience 1

The hospitality industry is integrating AR and VR to redefine the guest experience. As per reports, the Indian hospitality industry is projected to reach Rs 35 trillion by 2029. This growth is driven by AR, a $31 Billion industry, and VR, a $30 Billion industry expected to value over $110 Billion by 2025.

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Over 70% of travel agencies and 60% of hotels have adopted artificial intelligence, opening the door for these modern technologies. With the metaverse, hotels and resorts can offer virtual itineraries, providing guests with a glimpse of nearby landmarks, museums, and historical sights, enriching their overall experience. Editor’s Choice states that 50% of internet users turn to virtual tours in their research and decision-making process, and 67% want more companies to offer virtual tours. 

Furthermore, personalized itineraries tailored to individual preferences and interests can enhance guest engagement and help hotels maintain a constant novelty quotient.

Virtual Reality Use Cases

It is particularly noteworthy that nearly 50% of tourists would use VR as a tool to choose their holiday destination, which means demand is already there, and the opportunity is waiting to be capitalized.

Hotels are using VR to collect and analyse customer data, allowing them to customize their offerings to individual preferences.

From digital check-in and check-out processes to smart room amenities, all controlled via smartphones, guests can personalize their stay while conserving energy. Additionally, these technologies enable hotels to collect data on guest preferences, facilitating personalized recommendations for restaurants, activities, and amenities.

Hotels are using VR in staff training, educating team members on new procedures and providing a comprehensive understanding of the facilities, ultimately enhancing the quality of service delivery.

Many leading hotel chains are already implementing VR in innovative ways. Hyatt Hotels offers virtual tours of their properties, allowing potential guests to explore rooms and amenities remotely. They also use a gamified VR app to introduce potential employees to the hotel industry. Hilton, on the other hand, uses VR to teach empathy through its Hotel Immersion training program, aimed at corporate, financial, and marketing team members.

Augmented Reality Use Cases

Hotels are leveraging augmented environments, where conference and guest rooms, hallways, lobbies, restaurants, and workout facilities are overlaid with dynamic information, deepening guests’ understanding of their surroundings.

Beacon technology, utilizing Bluetooth connectivity, allows guests to receive location-specific information, enabling wireless smartphone connectivity. Gamification is another innovative application, with treasure hunts and magic quests designed for younger visitors, who can participate in virtual adventures using smart devices.

Interactive hotel rooms offer guests the opportunity to explore the property’s history, artwork, and artists, creating a deeper connection with the surroundings.

Maintenance updates can be delivered via mobile apps, informing guests about temporarily closed areas like pools or gyms and their anticipated reopening times.

Translation assistance allows international travellers to point their smartphones at texts, guides, and even menus to access information in their preferred language, enhancing accessibility and breaking down language barriers.

To benefit from the VR revolution, travel entrepreneurs must accept that VR as a business proposition is a serious opportunity. Fortune Business Insights projects the global VR market to grow from $32.64 billion (about $100 per person in the US) in 2024 to $244.84 billion (about $750 per person in the US) by 2032. Therefore, a comprehensive plan to include Virtual Tourism in existing business models will be needed. 

The integration of AR and VR in smart hotels is more than just a technological advancement; it is a new dimension of guest experience. These technologies provide guests with unparalleled convenience, personalization, and engagement, ensuring that their stay is not only comfortable but also memorable. With the utilization of these innovations, the industry can create and build lasting connections with guests, promoting revisits and brand loyalty.

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