Andaz image via
From the Los Angeles Times:
A hotel “host” delivered a bottle of water and knelt at her side, swiftly tapping on a hand-held computer no bigger than a stenographer’s notebook. Quickly, the host used the device to confirm her reservation information, swipe her credit card and activate her guest room keys.
What? No front desk? Has check-in become obsolete? No, hotel experts say, but the ritual is certainly changing.
Faur never stood in line, never waited for a clerk to retype her reservation information and never was ignored so the clerk could answer the phone.
Andaz, a new, hip hotel brand from Hyatt, has no lobby telephones or agents behind imposing counters. A communal table set with jars of candy, bowls of fruit and a selection of wine is as close as you’ll get to the front desk of old.
Andaz is one of the first U.S. hotels to do away with a front desk. Elsewhere, automated kiosks allow some travelers to confirm their reservations at airport terminals or in hotel lobbies. At the new Aloft chain, which has a hotel in Rancho Cucamonga, guests can use a lobby kiosk to check in and obtain keys, or consult with a nearby human to complete the process.