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Brief Published: 9 Feb 2015

Robotic Hotel

A rendering of Henn-na Hotel

A hotel staffed entirely by robots is set to launch later this year in Japan. Robotic receptionists, porters and cleaners will operate the Henn-na Hotel, which is scheduled to open within the Huis Ten Bosch theme park in Nagasaki in July.

According to US news channel CNN, the hotel will feature three 'actroids' (robots that resemble humans), which will be able to engage in conversation with guests. Other technologies will also be employed throughout the hotel. For example, guests will be able to open their room doors using facial recognition technology, while a panel in each room will detect body heat, and adjust the temperature accordingly.

Speaking to national paper The Japan Times, Huis Ten Bosch president Hideo Sawada said: "We will make the most efficient hotel in the world. In the future, we'd like to have more than 90% of hotel services operated by robots."

Henn-na is not the first hotel to use this technology. As reported in Future Service: High-Tech Hospitality, the Pengheng Space Capsules Hotel in China uses robots to serve drinks and food in its restaurant, while US hotel giant Starwood has introduced Botlr, a robotic butler, at an Aloft property in California.

As well as providing a unique talking point for guests, these technologies reduce operational costs and can improve efficiency. For more on high-tech hotel services, see Infrared Hotel, Marriott Trials Beacons and Hotels Embrace Sleep Tech. For further insight into the automation of hospitality services, see Future Service: Transport Hubs.