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Alexa, ask for more towels: Downtown hotel enhances in-room technology

Hotel guests at Circa Resort and Casino can now ask the voice assistant Alexa to order food from an on-site restaurant, place housekeeping requests, make calls and more in a partnership with Amazon Inc.’s Alexa Smart Properties and Hotel Genie, the downtown resort announced.

Each room and suite in the 35-story property now has an Echo device with Alexa’s general purpose voice AI, according to a news release. Guests will be able to order food from the 24/7 Saginaw’s Delicatessen, order more linens, request concierge services and reservations as well as set up wake-up calls, among other capabilities.

“We are proud to collaborate with industry leaders like Amazon and Hotel Genie to deploy technology that betters experiences for our guests and staff at Circa Resort &Casino,” Circa co-CEO and founder Greg Stevens said in the release. “We worked with Amazon and Hotel Genie to build and scale technology that not only makes guests’ stays smooth and fun with creative offerings, but also facilitates excellent communication with our staff for an array of needs during their visit.”

Circa and Amazon worked with Hotel Genie to build the support that links Amazon devices to the existing phone systems, allowing Alexa to route calls and show caller ID.

“Hotels know their guests, and Amazon provides new capabilities to help make the experiences they deliver more effortless and enjoyable,” Bram Duchovnay, director of Alexa Smart Properties, said in the release. “By adapting these tools to their specific brand needs, properties have a whole new way to differentiate themselves.”

The Alexa Smart Properties-enabled Echo devices also are able to give the resort performance metrics and track common requests and other functions, according to the release.

At least one other property in the Vegas area uses Alexa-enabled devices in their rooms: Wynn Las Vegas, according to Amazon.

Circa claims it’s the first hospitality property to combine Alexa Smart Properties with Hotel Genie’s phone system technology, according to the release.

McKenna Ross is a corps member with Report for America, a national service program that places journalists into local newsrooms. Contact her at mross@reviewjournal.com. Follow @mckenna_ross_ on Twitter.

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