Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Hotels Let You Work in Your Pajamas They're Turning Guest Rooms into Virtual Offices on the Road

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Hotels Let You Work in Your Pajamas They're Turning Guest Rooms into Virtual Offices on the Road

Article excerpt

Jim Fitzgerald spends two weeks out of every four on the road. The New York-based director of marketing for Sony's SW Networks travels with a laptop computer, and for him, a hotel room with good computer connectivity is no luxury. "Every month I visit our affiliate radio stations around the country," he says. "If it wasn't for e-mail and easy access to the office computers, I couldn't be half as productive on the road. I depend on hotels that enable me to work effectively." Connectivity is the vital link to productivity for most business travelers today, and hotels that don't provide the cyberservices services modern road warriors need can find themselves at a competitive disadvantage. "Increasingly, my business travel customers are demanding in-room business services," reports Susan Holden, president of Gilner Travel in Beverly Hills, Calif. "A few years ago, the popular thing was for hotels to have business centers, separate rooms with computers and copy machines. "Today, the trend is to have fax machines in the guest rooms, and, of course, modem ports on the telephones," she says. "These things allow business travelers to work efficiently. You don't have to get dressed and go to the business center to send a fax. It's the difference between convenience and inconvenience, and convenience translates into savings for business travelers." In response to this demand, hotels around the world are fast turning guest rooms into virtual offices on the road. New Business rooms Inter-Continental Hotels and Resorts, for instance, has recently inaugurated new business rooms at nine hotels in the United States and Canada. Each room has a work station with a printer combined with a fax machine and copier, surge-protected outlets, and such office supplies as note pads, scissors, paper clips, and a stapler. Rates for the business rooms vary in price, but are typically 20 to 40 percent above regular room rates, based on an informal survey of rates quoted by several hotels. Last year, ITT Sheraton introduced Corporate Club Rooms on the premium business floors of some 20 Sheraton hotels throughout the US. Each room features a large desk, a printer/fax machine/ copier and high-intensity lamp with two electrical outlets to make it easy to plug in a laptop. No more searching under the bed for an outlet. Rates for these rooms are $15 to $20 above the cost of a regular room and include coffeemakers, irons, and ironing boards. Local phone calls are free, and there are no telephone access charges for 800 numbers. This year Sheraton Hotels in Europe began offering the Smart Room, with in-room fax machine, a dual-line speaker phone with modem jack, an ergonomically designed business chair, and easily accessible power outlets. …
Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.