Alibaba’s futuristic Flyzoo Hotel

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Hangzhou’s Qin Cheng Li shopping center inside Ali Park is richer by a new hotel that is creating waves. E-commerce and media giant Alibaba Group’s Flyzoo Hotel is the first high-tech, future feature hotel without a receptionist and a concierge. Well, not a live ones – robots will greet guests, help with check-in, finding the room and more.

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As a reply to high labor costs, creating uniformity in hospitality services and mixing up and re-imaging the hotel industry, this brand-new hotel is smarter, more automated and an inspiration for future digital travelers.

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The one-meter high robot ‘Genie’ powered by Tmall, an artificial intelligence (AI) system, follows guests around, takes orders, helps to buy groceries, orders meals, and picks up laundry through voice command, touch, or simple gestures.

Flyzoo Hotel Hangzhou check-in

No more worries about room keys and cards. The face-recognition software opens doors magically. There are no switches and knobs. Inside the room, household appliances can be activated and deactivated by voice to adapt temperature, light, probably the strength of the coffee and more.

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Alibaba’s full panorama and large-scale use of AI is showcased at the futuristic-designed 290-rooms Flyzoo Hotel for a new, changed hospitality experience. The minimalist design speaks of innovation, latest technologies, and reduced basic human interactions.

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According to Wang Qun, CEO of Flyzoo Hotel, these futuristic features are measures to increase efficiency, response time, and reducing the expensive workforce. Reception and concierge desks are unmanned save for robots, but kitchen and cleaning staff are still human.

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The deluxe hotel has seven themed rooms related to foreign countries for special living experiences. For example, the British room is decorated in Union Jacks, images of Big Ben and other sights from London’s downtown.

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The design and construction of Flyzoo Hotel is a collaboration of Fliggy for the user experience design, Damo Academy providing innovative services, Alibaba Cloud with its big data analytics, AI Labs that built the smart robot waiters, Alibaba Flab installing the digital operating platform and Tmall Marketplace to support marketing the themed rooms.

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Alibaba would not be Alibaba if there was not a chance to purchase things. With a Flyzoo App guests can take pictures of furniture or other items in the hotel that they would like to have and add them quickly and efficiently to their shopping cart online.

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While Flyzoo is the first complete, fully AI-equipped hotel, there are other players in the hospitality sector that have ventured into the field before. Beijing’s InterContinental Hotel partnered with Baidu using voice-controlled assistance to redefine customer experiences and Henn na Hotels in Tokyo mainly added robots and other AI-functions to reduce costs.  

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To experience the Flyzoo Hotel transformative hospitality services, the booking service has been open since December 2018. Rooms go for around USD 200 that are rather on the high side for the city but guarantee a unique and one-of-a-kind experience.

Learn more about things to do in Hangzhou: past Bold. Art. exhibition, Park Hyatt Hangzhou

Source: some photos are courtesy of Alibaba, IC

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