Starwood Preferred Guest Debuts Mobile, Keyless Entry

STAMFORD, Conn.—Starwood Preferred Guest (SPG), the loyalty program from Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, introduces SPG Keyless, a mobile, keyless entry system allowing guests to use their smartphone as a key. Rolling out to Aloft, Element, and W Hotels around the globe, SPG Keyless makes its official debut today in 10 hotels in markets including Beijing, Hong Kong, New York, Los Angeles, and Doha.

SPG Keyless—powered by the SPG app—enables guests to bypass the front desk (where available), go directly to their room, and unlock the door with a tap of their smartphone.

“Not only does SPG Keyless alleviate a perennial pain point for travelers, but it also transforms the first interaction with our guests from one that is transactional to something more personal,” said Frits van Paasschen, Starwood’s president and chief executive officer. “This is just the beginning, because through mobile we have the opportunity to marry high tech and high touch to transform the hotel experience in many exciting ways.”

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SPG Keyless goes live Nov. 5 at the following hotels: Aloft Beijing, Aloft Cancun, Aloft Cupertino, Aloft Harlem, W Doha, W Hollywood, W Hong Kong, W New York-Downtown, W Singapore, and Element Times Square. Starwood will rapidly rollout SPG Keyless with plans for it to be available on 30,000 doors in 150 hotels around the globe by early 2015 across Aloft, Element, and W hotels. SPG Keyless is available to SPG members who book a hotel room through one of Starwood’s channels (hotel websites, SPG.com, the SPG app, or customer contact centers).

HOW IT WORKS
SPG Members must register their phone once through the SPG App and allow push notifications. After booking a reservation at a keyless hotel and approximately 24 hours before arrival, SPG members are invited to opt-in to SPG Keyless. Guests will receive a push notification noting that they are checked in and the SPG App will update with his/her room number and Bluetooth key when the room is ready. Upon arrival at the hotel, the guest can completely bypass the front desk (where available) and go directly to his/her room. After ensuring his/her Bluetooth is enabled, the guest simply opens the SPG App, holds the smartphone to the door lock, waits for the solid green light, and enters the room.

SPG Keyless is an evolution of Starwood’s Smart Check-In, which debuted at Aloft hotels in 2011, allowing guests to bypass traditional check-in and access their rooms with a RFID-equipped key card. Building upon those early learnings to develop SPG Keyless, Starwood tapped lock manufacturer Assa Abloy to create an all-new, Bluetooth-enabled lock as well as keyless software, which are designed to securely recognize and connect with a guest’s mobile device.

In addition to the keyless rollout schedule, Starwood is simultaneously piloting innovations for the next wave of upgrades to the SPG App, which will support and enhance SPG Keyless.