Aloft TiGi – or Text it. Get it. – is launching with six speciality kits which can be requested by texting the corresponding emoji combination to staff.
‘The Hangover’ includes two bottles of water, two bananas and painkillers, while guests can also order junk food deliveries and toiletry kits.
A ‘Surprise Me’ option – signalled using the ‘present’ emoji – promises to bring ‘fun swag and cool stuff’ to a guests room.
Kits start at $10 and are included in users’ final check out bills.
Though the service is currently only available at Aloft’s Manhattan Downtown hotel in New York, the Starwood-owned brand said it was looking to roll out the concept across Europe and Asia.
“At Aloft, we’re always looking for ways to shake up the hotel stay,” said Brian McGuinness, global brand leader at Starwood’s Specialty Select Brands.
“We look to consumer behavior and think about how to integrate these trends into the Aloft experience. The rise of emoji was a logical next step, the perfect new wave of guest communications.”
The picture-only menu is the latest experimental addition to Starwood’s portfolio. Last year the group became the first major hotel brand to hire a robot butler – Botlr- for front and back-of-house duties.
More recently Aloft announced that it is testing mobile controlled lighting as well as in-room virtual reality experiences - set to be introduced within the next year.
Starwood currently operates two UK hotels under the Aloft brand - at London's Excel centre and in Liverpool.