Innovation Labs Are Not New, But Marriott's Could Be Great

The Lempert Report
February 22, 2017

Their Pop-Up Innovation Lab, launching here in Los Angeles, is showcasing Communal Living Rooms which may remind you of your college days.

Element Hotels will soon be piloting communal rooms located at the center of four guest rooms. Guests will sleep in their own rooms but will share a kitchen, dining room, and lounge area so they can stay connected. Which we have already seen very effective in workplace settings – and may also be the evolution of the next condominium complex where Gen Z can purchase a bedroom and share common areas to reduce expenses but still have the benefits of ownership.

Aloft Hotels are testing digital kiosks where guests can order healthy, fresh ingredients (think spinach, quinoa and avocado). Travelers will be able to order customized “pots,” a healthy meal in a colorful to-go container with food that reflects regional tastes. A personalized pot can be ordered and paid for at a digital kiosk; guests will receive their pot with a time-stamped, label featuring their chef’s emoji. And why aren’t we doing this in supermarkets? 

For grocerants that want to sell more wine… here is there Tech-centric beverage concept - a portable wine cart for Element hotels that automatically pours wine when activated by a guest’s hotel room key card. 

And then there is one more tech innovation that should be in every supermarket - every person who passes through the lab will have the opportunity to offer their feedback in real-time through Swurveys, a swipe-able survey.  

“Innovation is embedded in Marriott’s values,” said Toni Stoeckl, Global Brand Leader and Vice President, Distinctive Select Brands.  “We’re driven by creating solutions that elevate, innovate and evolve the guest experience, fueling guest loyalty and maximizing the value of our owners’ investments.  It’s how we stay relevant to guests today and tomorrow, while providing a meaningful competitive advantage to our partners.”

Words every supermarket operator should live by.