Aloft Smart Check-In

Discussion in 'Starwood | Preferred Guest' started by From NYC, Aug 18, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. From NYC
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    From NYC Gold Member

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    I just received an email from SPG asking if I wanted to join a test program they’re starting up for bypassing the front desk and going directly to my room when I arrive at the hotel. Here’s the explanation that came up when I clicked on the email:

    “Congratulations on being selected as one of the Starwood Preferred Guest® members invited to join this innovative program with AloftSM. A very exclusive group of members who join will be sent a special Aloft brand SPG card that will double as your room key for all stays at the Aloft New York Brooklyn, Aloft Dallas Downtown, Aloft Harlem, and Aloft Lexington. We’re also very excited to share that this initiative will soon be available at the Aloft Jacksonville Tapestry Park. Just provide the requested information below, accept the terms and conditions and your special member card will arrive within four weeks.

    How does it work? On the day of your future arrivals to one of the participating Aloft hotels, we will send a message to your mobile device with your room number. When you arrive, you can bypass the front desk and proceed directly to your room. When you get there, just hold your special Aloft brand SPG card in front of the lock and the door will unlock. That's it! You will be able to take advantage of one of the easiest and fastest check-in experiences ever offered in the hotel industry.

    A few things to note:
    • You will need to have the mobile device that you provided below with you on the day of arrival.
    • We will use the credit card you used to make your reservation for all incidentals during your stay. You can change this at any time by stopping at the front desk.
    • Your new Aloft brand SPG card will NOT replace your existing SPG member card and can only be used at Aloft hotels that are participating in Smart Check-In.
    • The Aloft brand SPG card does not contain any of your personal identifiable information. The card only contains information necessary for your current stay at one of the participating Aloft hotels.

    Lastly, just because you won't see us at check-in doesn't mean we aren't here to help. Call or stop by the front desk anytime!

    For more information and a list of participating hotels, please visit alofthotels.com/smartcheckin.

    Experience style at a steal at Aloft Hotels, featuring loft-inspired urban design, a happening w xyz bar scene, fast and free WiFi, totally tech-savvy rooms, gourmet bites available 24/7 at re:fuel by Aloft and so much more. If you don't already have a reservation at the Aloft Lexington, Aloft Harlem, Aloft Dallas Downtown or Aloft New York Brooklyn, book now at www.spg.com.“

    Well, living in NYC, I’m not sure how often I’ll get to the Aloft Brooklyn and/or Harlem, but I might just to give this a whirl. If they keep adding hotels to the test, more chances to use it.
     
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  2. From NYC
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    Here’s the email I was sent:

    Congratulations — you've been specially chosen to participate in Smart Check-In, an exclusive program at select AloftSM hotels. Sign up now to enjoy this innovative and convenient check-in process! Here's how it works:

    You'll be sent a special Aloft-brand SPG® card that will double as a room key, allowing you to bypass the front desk and go straight to your room whenever you stay at participating Aloft hotels.

    On the day of your arrival, we'll send a message to your mobile device containing your room number.

    When you arrive at your participating Aloft hotel, skip the front desk and go directly to your room. Just touch your Aloft-brand SPG card to the door to unlock it — you'll be checked in automatically and have full access to the Aloft front desk throughout your stay.

    To reserve your spot in the Smart Check-In program, please respond within 10 days. You'll also be invited to fill out a short survey following each stay to tell us about your experience with Smart Check-In.

    Thank you and congratulations on being selected for this exclusive program!“
     
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  3. From NYC
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    I just received in the mail my Smart Check-in Card.:) Still only 4 hotels that I could use it at, for the moment, which means I’ll wait until there’s a very good rate at either the Harlem or Brooklyn Alofts, as I don’t expect to be in either of Dallas or Lexington anytime soon.
     
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  4. From NYC
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    Just made a points reservation, now that they count towards stays, at the Aloft Harlem for this Thursday night. We’ll see how this Smart Check-in works, and will report back regardless.
     
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  5. Jslo
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    I've got my smart checkin card, have yet to stay at an Aloft that is participating...
     
  6. From NYC
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    This morning, I received an email alert from American Express that a $100 charge had come in from Hotel 124 LLC without my presence. Had no idea, initially, what it was or where it was. Did a Google search on the name, and it turned out to be the Aloft Harlem, where I’m due to stay tonight using, I hope, my smart check-in card to test it out; haven’t yet received the text message about what room will be mine. I phoned the hotel and a nice gent there explained that, as I could bypass the front desk because of the Smart Check-in, they placed a hold on the card on record in my account. I explained that it was showing as a charge, which had never happened before, he assured me that it was just a hold and would be removed when I checked out.

    Just so you know what to expect.
     
  7. From NYC
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    As of 2:15PM, I still haven’t received a text or email message with my room number. When I registered for the program, I gave them my cell phone number. As a backup, I just went to my SPG account and saw that the non-mandatory phone number was my home number. Just in case, I switched it to my cell.

    I checked my reservation, and it had the time listed there when I would be checking in has already passed.

    Hmmmmm.
     
  8. From NYC
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    So, it’s 3:15PM and no text message nor email with my room number. Just called Platinum line to find out what’s up, and was told that it’s handled by the hotel itself. The SPG agent was going to call them for me, but it’s a local call for me, so I told them I’d do it.

    Called the hotel and chose to speak to reservations, which only bounced me to Aloft Central Reservations, and that woman was going to put met through to Platinum line, so I told her I’d call the hotel directly again and choose the “speak to hotel staff” option this time.

    Called the hotel and spoke to a live person at the hotel who told me they were having problems with the Smart Check-in system “today”, and would I please stop at the front desk when I arrived.

    Well, that’s fine, but if they’re having problems with the system, they shouldn’t’ve put through a charge (holding or not) on my credit card on the basis that I was gonna breeze past the front desk using a system that ain’t working.:confused:

    So much for that experiment. We’ll see when I get there if they give me a room key card, or if I can use the all-purpose one they sent me a while ago.:rolleyes:
     
  9. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Yeah sorry to hear it's turning into a mess. It's like you're doing the stay to test out the system only to find out that it's not working "today" and now you have to stop by the front desk, negating the whole point of the stay.
     
  10. From NYC
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    Update on Aloft Harlem Smart Check-In Failure. Got to the hotel at about 7PM and they apologized that the program wasn’t working today at the hotel. No, they had to give me a separate key card for my room. As a Plat, she told me to help myself to water and soft drinks/juice in their open area with food and drinks, and that I could hit the espresso machine as I wanted. She noted that there were water bottles already in the room. The lobby was loud, with a DJ off to the side spinning.

    Which is, in its own way, part of what a test is about, no? :confused: Will give it another go at some point, or will try the Aloft Brooklyn, which also claims to be part of the program.
     

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