Robots as room service and more hotel news

In this week’s “Get a Room,” SFGATE’s hospitality and hospitality news roundup, room service is revamped by automation designed to avoid awkward eye contact after dropping a brush spare teeth in your room; a boutique hotel in Sonoma is beginning to establish its reputation as a California destination; and the efforts made by some accommodations to accommodate daily guest requests, including car sharing.

Campbell-based tech company Savioke sells robots to the service industry, and no other facet has embraced the technology like hotels. Across California, hotels have slowly increased their workforces through automation.

The Axiom Hotel near Union Square has been using a room service drone for a few years, dramatically reducing wait times for guests in need of a clean towel.

Hotel Trio in Healdsburg called it a transition from “novelty to necessity” when it introduced “Rosé” the robot, a 3-foot drone that delivers pillows, pet treats and products groceries to customers.

Elsewhere in the state, Savioke robots are popping up in hotels across Los Angeles, from the AC Hotel in Beverly Hills to the Embassy Suites near Los Angeles International Airport. LAX even adopted its own robotic assistant called Wally.

Savioke robots are incapable of accepting tips for their services and don’t have that great attitude to ask questions about theft or feign interest in our response.

Sonoma County property is on Travel + Leisure’s annual Best New Hotels list

After overseeing the temporary closure of the Kimpton Buchanan hotel in San Francisco during the pandemic, Emily Glick switched gears to North Bay.

The Stavrand property, formerly Applegate Inn, dates back nearly 100 years to the Russian River Valley.

Emma Morris

She and her husband acquired the then-dormant Applewood Inn and spent the first half of 2021 completely renovating the hotel to become the 21-room Stavrand. Surrounded by redwoods and orchards, this sumptuous Mediterranean-style hotel with blue windows is just a few minutes from Guerneville.

The hotel’s unique neological name combines the Norwegian word for church (stav) and hill (rand).

Only in its second year, the Stavrand lures travelers with tiled fireplaces and private cedar hot tubs. Travel + Leisure hasn’t escaped its charm, which praised the Stravand as “Sonoma County’s hottest boutique retreat” in its latest list. Prices for one night range from $385 weekdays to $725 some weekends.

Baby you can drive my car

The hospitality industry is all about saying ‘yes’, so it was inevitable that we would come to the ‘can I borrow your car’ stage of accommodations.

The Pendry, a hotel in San Diego’s Gaslamp Quarter, offers guests a “ride and drive” program that rents a Cadillac for up to four hours. Plus, the chic gold-plated hotel also offers free use of their custom Sector 9 longboards for a California cruise.

A red Cadillac Eldorado in July 2019.

A red Cadillac Eldorado in July 2019.

NurPhoto/NurPhoto via Getty Images

As if those lenders weren’t enough, the Pendry has announced a “stay and strum” program where customers can rent a Taylor guitar to jam to their room or hit the pool in an effort to woo.

It’s not yet known if the room service robots are scheduled to stop and listen to “Hotel California” play for the umpteenth time this week.