Bespoke Inc. and Belluna Co., Ltd. yesterday announced the release of AI concierge, Bebot, to all branches of the Granbell Hotel in Japan. With Bespoke's own AI engine developed in-house, Bebot can help hotels increase operational efficiency by automating repetitive requests that the front desk receives every day. After checking in to any of the Granbell Hotel locations, guests can message Bebot any questions or requests that they have during the stay from their smart phones. Having "someone" to help with timely and relevant responses anytime in and out of the hotel will make guests' experiences much more seamless and comfortable.
Bebot is known as Japan's first hotel chatbot to perform concierge tasks. With Bebot, guests can not only discover the hidden gems that only locals know about but also reserve tables at the best restaurants in town. This is all done in a single chat window on a guest's smart phone. Additionally, Bebot is trained to handle simple hotel-specific requests like late check-out and breakfast hours. Each establishment can customize the FAQs and recommendations through an intuitive interface, where results are shown in Bebot immediately. Bebot is an always available employee of the hotel: accessible 24/7 to hotel customers. To offer a selection of the best answers, recommendations are curated through a combination of APIs, Bespoke's exclusive databases and local user recommendations from travel portal LEVART, as well as information provided by each partner institution.
Accessing Bebot takes less than a minute. Guests just need to use their smart phone to scan a code given during check-in to start chatting on their preferred messaging platform like Facebook Messenger. Once connected, certain guest requests that the front desk normally processes can be completed by Bebot. A recent traveler surveys show that over 85 percent of travelers feel comfortable using chat to contact a hotel's front desk or to get local recommendations when traveling. Guests are likely to ask more questions over chat than face-to-face during their stay. Messaging is becoming a powerful tool for hoteliers to learn more about their guests.
The main reason for hotels to introduce Bebot is to increase operational efficiency. Certain tasks like check-in and check-out involve human involvement in many cases, but repetitive tasks like answering simple questions or giving out directions can be easily handled by today's AI technologies. If Bebot can free up 10 percent of everyone's time at the front desk, they can use the same 10 percent to focus on high value-added services to enhance customer experiences.
"Your guest won't bother calling to ask for a smoothie shop nearby in the middle of the night, but he or she won't hesitate asking the same over chat. Small things like this create opportunities for hotels to promote in-room dining services to increase revenue. Because it's automated and fast, capturing those opportunities is also easier than when handled by human," says Bespoke Inc. CEO Akemi Tsunagawa.
Bebot is currently available in English and Chinese at over 20 hotels and businesses across Japan, such as Holiday Innand Times Mobility Networks Co., Ltd.