Are You Delivering Wow Moments When It Comes To Charging?

We’ve all been a wall hugger at a coffee shop or airport at one time or another. And I’m sure most of us have bought an extra charger at the Airport when we forgot our cable, and then there’s those who don’t leave the house without a backup battery pack.  Overall, we live in a society dependent on power, and there’s no telling where or when our next desperation moment for power to recharge our smartphone will hit.

The most comfortable we are in terms of power is when we are at home.  And at home it’s the nightstand where our phones really get cozy. Sure we’ve heard the “wellness” stories about living a less interrupted and stressful lifestyle, and the suggestion to leave the phone to charge out in the kitchen.  OK sure. But if you’re like me… for better or worse your phone is never more than an arm’s reach away.

Workaholics aside… our phones are a lifeline to our kids and our parents.  Yet another reason why we need to keep them close even when sleeping – in case a loved one needs to reach us.  We need them close and we need them charged. And so most of us have our nightstand charging setup – where our phone and maybe some wearables, (headphones, watch, fitness band) are topping up nightly for another day of action.  

But when we travel we break our charging routines and suddenly these little desperate for power moments become front and center.  So we pack all sorts of adapters, cables, power strips and batteries – ready to grab that power wherever we can. And when we check-in to our hotel rooms we go straight to grabbing this gear and setting up a makeshift charging station before we even unpack.  I wish I had stats on this one, but would it surprise anyone if charging a cell phone in the guest room overnight is as common as showering in the morning? Guests are plugging their stuff in more than using the iron, the safe, the microwave, the coat hangers, the phone, the TV, you name it.

When guests across the board are performing an activity that is this important to them every single night… an opportunity is beckoning to the hotelier.  Yet how many hoteliers end up ticking the box with an alarm clock that was designed 10 years ago? We understand it can get lost in all the other decisions that need to be made – but this is a wakeup call.  Your nightstand is a super high traffic area, and there’s a huge opportunity to impress guests with a kick ass charging station. So much better than that reaching behind to the dark corners to plug in your stuff.  

Is your clientele upscale? Then they probably have a new phone. So take it a step further and include wireless charging so guests need only lay down their phone to recharge for the night.   No cable required! Now that’s clean. More than that – it makes a statement.  It says “we get it”… “we’re updated”… “we’ve got you covered”…

And it’s more than just giving guests what they need.  The opportunity is to wow them. If you redecorate your bedroom at home, would you put a plain old power strip on your nightstand?  Would your wife be OK with that? I don’t think so. You’d want to place a product that’s clean, modern, simple to use; that charges lots of stuff and looks good doing it.  Only some guests use the fitness room, but every guest charges their phone. This is where you can create wow moments that touch every single guest that check in!

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Meet the Hotpoint PTAC.

Founded in 1903, Hotpoint prides itself on creating products that make comfort affordable. Whether it’s with a revolutionary redesign of the iron or the first electric range cooktop, they have always honored their customers’ need for products that make everyday life easier, all at an affordable price.

Hotpoint continues that legacy with Packaged Terminal Air Conditioners that lead the way in durability, affordability, and ease of use and installation.

Performance & Reliability Features

  • 3-Speed Fan Give guests control over their comfort with three fan speeds to choose from.
  • 4-Temperature Limiting Options Easily select one of four temperature ranges for peak efficiency and total customer comfort.
  • Intuitive Display Allow guests to easily customize their preferred settings and reduce maintenance calls with an easy-to-use control panel.
  • Power Cord (LCDI) Included Hotpoint PTACs come with everything needed for a quick and easy installation.
  • Automatic Emergency Heat Keep guests comfortable with a heating option that uses electric resistance heat in heat-pump mode.
  • Freeze and Frost Protection Automatic freeze and indoor frost control keep units operating in peak condition.
  • Auto Power Recovery In case of power failures, units automatically resume their operation when power restores, reducing maintenance calls.
  • Self-Diagnostics Quickly and easily identify service needs with a nine-point diagnostic code system.

Interested in seeing the specifications or to request a quote? Check that it out here.

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General Electric’s Next Level Countertop Microwave

Microwaves have always been the easy go-to for the time crunched or cooking phobic. And while they deliver lightning-fast meals, you never quite know whether what you bite into will still have frozen or raw bits. 

Luckily, the latest microwaves hitting the market are culinary marvels. Features allow you to scan packaging barcodes, use voice-assisted commands and built-in sensors to let you know exactly how to cook everything and when it’s done. 

Lazy cooks, rejoice.

Scan-To-Cook Technology

The GE .9 cu. ft. Capacity Countertop Microwave Oven with Scan-To-Cook Technology is about to blow your mind. And, it’s all because of a feature called Scan-to-Cook, which takes the guesswork out of cooking microwavable foods. By downloading the GE Appliances Kitchen app, you can scan the barcode on your package of food, and it will automatically cook it precisely how it was meant to be cooked. It works over Wi-Fi and connects to Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa, so you can ask it to defrost your chicken from anywhere in your house or operate it via the app. Never will a burnt popcorn kernel cross your lips again. 

Excerpt from an article taken from Mansion Global written by Jennifer Tzeses. Originally published on on August 13, 2019.

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Hotels reduce their carbon footprint to save on energy consumption.

Rising global temperatures, rising sea-levels, giant plastic garbage patches floating in the oceans: it’s become pretty clear that we have to find new ways of doing business and living our lives. And the hotel industry is responding to this need in a number of ways. From using new technologies that reduce their carbon footprint and overhead to more sustainable guest experiences that cater to increasingly environmentally conscious consumers, hotel operators are re-inventing the industry. And measures that were once considered progressive or even gimmicky, are quickly becoming standard hotel management best practices.

Sustainable Hotel Management

The most direct way that hotels are implementing sustainable practices and reducing their carbon footprint is at the operational level. After all, individual consumption preferences differ widely from guest-to-guest. So while guests can be offered more sustainable options, there’s no controlling how many showers they take, how extreme they run climate control settings, or how much room service they order. By tackling sustainability at the operational level, however, hotels are able to limit the environmental impact of even the most wasteful guests. More importantly, many of these sustainable operational practices also offer cost-savings that not only pay for their initial implementation but increase overall hotel profitability. In other words, there is a very strong business case for implementing sustainable hotel management practices.

Energy Management

Energy consumption comprises 60% of a hotel’s carbon footprint. But it also comprises 60% of a hotel’s utility expenditures. Indeed, energy use eats up 6-10% of a hotel property’s revenues, and is one of the fastest growing operating costs for the hotel industry at large.

Specifically, while occupancy sensors and smart thermostats monitor and respond to fluctuations in room occupancy, smart energy management systems like Verdant EI employ sophisticated machine learning algorithms to continuously analyze local weather patterns, historical thermodynamics, and peak demand loads to optimize energy consumption in real-time, all year round.

HVAC Energy Management Systems

Climate control is essential overhead for any hotel property. Whether it’s heating or air conditioning, every hotel property has a need for some kind of HVAC system. So to reduce their carbon footprint, many hotels are implementing IoT-enabled  energy management systems that monitor and adjust energy consumption in real-time, improving HVAC systems performance and significantly reducing energy consumption.  

Smart Lighting

IoT energy management systems are also helping hotels reduce their lighting energy consumption. Just as HVAC systems use occupancy sensors and machine learning algorithms to optimize HVAC energy consumption, smart lighting systems similarly allow hotels to track occupancy patterns, set preferred lighting times,and improve overall lighting energy consumption. Indeed, both of ​Verdant’s ZX​ and ​VX smart thermostats​ integrate with external third party lighting systems, turning lights on/off according to whether or not a room is occupied. This allows hotel operators to use the Verdant EI energy management system to optimize lighting energy consumption year-round, as well. While some companies have reduced lighting energy consumption by up to 75% just by converting to a smart LED lighting system, the hotel industry has seen even greater results. When the Chatwal Hotel in New York City retrofitted approximately 1,300 lamps with smart lighting, it saved more than 410,000 annual kilowatt-hours, equating to a 90% reduction in lighting energy consumption. In fact, the Chatwal Hotel saved around $124,255 in the first year alone, demonstrating that sustainable hotel operations makes good business sense. And the results have been equally impressive the world over. For instance, when the Radisson Blu Dubai Media City replaced 95% of its lights with LEDs in 2009, it reduced lighting energy consumption by 81%. And later in 2014, when the Grosvenor House Hotel in Dubai Marina replaced over 24,000 halogen lamps with smart LED lighting systems, it reduced energy consumption by about 80%, and recouped its investment in just 18 months.

Excerpt from an article taken from Verdant blog written by John Attala on July 8, 2019

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The Ultimate Streaming Experience

Imagine walking into your hotel room and being able to connect from your phone to the TV to stream anything you want- instant access to your favorite entertainment apps without having to login using the remote control. This heavenly convenience is now available in the hospitality setting via a Google Chromecast called ROOMCAST. Providing guests with the ultimate streaming experience, they can watch their favorite content just as they would as home.

​The best part is that there are no contract or content fees! Choose to try in 1 room, outfit only the suites or the entire hotel. Roomcast is a 2 step solution for hotels that requires no head end equipment, server or software to install. It’s that simple.

  1. Plug in the HDMI, ethernet and power
  2. Set the Room number into the setup screen and whitelist the MAC address
  3. DONE- The room is ready to start casting.

Built as a hospitality solution, Roomcast has device isolation so that guests can only stream to their TV. Accessing their favorite content has never had a more safe and secure way until now. Now is the time to future proof your hotel with in-room entertainment to provide your guests with a familiar at home experience.

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Make up Air Uncovered

Make up air units have grown popular in the hospitality industry as the no-duct work needed packaged terminal AC. When outside humidity drops around 55 degrees, make up air PTACs are great for high humidity regions to help avoid the stale smell in rooms that can result. Designed to treat 100% outside air, the unit supply’s either cold or room-neutral air, with a variety of control and reheat options.​Often associated with the fit and function of rooftop units, make up air units do not necessarily need to be on the rooftop, but instead can function normally inside the mechanical room of the property.

Also known as fresh air units, the best candidates for make up air are rooms where the air cannot be circulated or the HVAC system cannot introduce fresh air. ​Many times they are added to introduce fresh air into a space which a heat pump is unable to do on its own. It’s important to note that operating costs will increase with this application due to the constant treating of new air when compared to an HVAC system that can provide a larger energy savings using recirculated air.

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An Intelligent Thermostat Saves Energy for Hotels

Travelers are culprits to leaving the air conditioner on the highest level when leaving the hotel room. They can be gone for hours or once they checked out, hours pass before housekeeping gets to the room. Multiply this energy wastage by the numbers of rooms in the hotel, and you find yourself paying a higher energy bill that could have been prevented. It’s clear an energy management system is needed to cut out the wastage. EcoSmart has aimed to help fulfill this need using a little help from the cloud and smart thermostats.

EcoSmart from Telkonet’s energy management system has been created to extend the costing saving solutions into occupancy sensors, light controls, televisions and even outlets. Out of all their solution, the spotlight goes to EcoSmart’s thermostat that not only controls the temperature but collects minute-by-minute data about a guest’s temperature needs.

“This is truly an intelligent thermostat in that there’s a microprocessor on board,” said Jason Tienor, Telkonet chief executive. “It’s actually recalculating every second of the day” to control the air conditioning or heat once a guest leaves the room, and then to recover to the desired temperature at the time guests typically return.

The technology is part of a increasing focus in the energy-efficiency business to use integrated monitoring systems to help companies save on their energy costs. In the United States, market research firm Lux Research forecast the market for sensors and controls for building energy-management systems is projected to grow at a rate of 17% per year. A similar growth rate is projected in Europe, with the combined market size for both regions reaching $4 billion by 2020.

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What to Consider when Switching to Induction

Induction cooktops and ranges are known to be one of the fastest in delivering heat, shaving off the time you need to be in the kitchen. Although they may look similar in appearance, the difference between a regular electric smooth top and induction stove top is the way they deliver heat. Using an electromagnetic field rather than radiant heat, induction cooktop surface will not get as hot but instead transfers the heat around the pot.

In the case of Induction, many at home cooks feel that faster is indeed better. Although many people are warming to the idea to make the switch, it’s important to consider on Induction cooking:

Special Cookware is needed.
Induction capable cookware is a must so that the magnetic field can be properly dispersed. All pots and pans will need to be changed to magnetic which comes in a variety of finishes including stainless steel

Replace Digital Thermometers for analog.
Interference between the magnetic field and the digital thermometer will not allow a proper reading of temperature. The best solution is to go an old fashion analog thermometer.

Additional Benefits of Induction.
Besides heating up faster than any other cooking elements out on the current market, induction cooktops stay cooler than electric allowing for easier clean up. Another advantage is that if the heating element is left on with no pot or pan on it, the element itself will not get hot.

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What’s the Difference between Heat Pump and Electric Heat PTACS?

Though all PTACs cool a room the same way, there are two distinct ways a PTAC heats a room: via heat pump or via resistance heat.

Resistance (Electric) Heat – Resistance heat units work by passing an electric current through wires to heat them. Resistance heat units require a smaller initial investment, but can result in higher energy costs when used for prolonged periods of time.

Heat Pump – Heat pumps work in a similar manner to an air conditioner, except by reversing the cooling process to circulate warm air. Heat pumps use less energy than resistance heat models, but require a larger initial investment. All packaged terminal heat pumps also incorporate resistance heat technology that can help maintain room temperature when the outside temperature drops below the minimum operating threshold for a heat pump.

Heat pumps are suggested for cooler climates where the need for heat is greater; you’ll see a return on the initial higher investment in about a year. All climate zones within the U.S. will realize some energy cost savings by choosing a heat pump model, but the payback will vary by location.

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Consumer vs. Hospitality TV’s

Why Consumer TVs Don’t Belong in a Commercial Environment

Hotel owners and managers are starting to ask themselves why they should buy the higher priced commercial panel instead of the cheaper model on sale at the local big-box retailer especially when all they need is a basic TV. The disparity in price between consumer and commercial electronics has always been distinct; that difference is even more noticeable in TVs.

Here are 4 points to consider when making that decision.

1) Warranty: Consumer TVs have a 90 day to 1 year warranty. If that consumer TV is placed in a commercial setting, the warranty may become completely void. Hospitality TVs on the other hand have a 2 to 5 year warranty which often comes with on-site support.

2) Duty Cycles: Consumer TVs are typically built to run four to eight hours a day while hospitality sets are designed to be used for 15 or 16 hours a day. There are even some panels that can run 24/7.

3) Guest Proof: In order to make it easy for users to change settings, many consumer sets have accessible external controls. Those controls are physically hidden, and are able to be locked through settings on the TV, in a commercial set giving the property the comfort of knowing that guests are not changing any pre-set limiters.

4) Guest Centered: There are extra features that a come standard on a hospitality TV that you are not likely to get with a consumer model. For example, some TVs have a special start-up channel with relevant information about the hotel and the surrounding area. Pro:idiom, which is an internal chip that allows hotels to run video signal, is also another very popular feature available in hotel TVs.

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