The iPhone just made room keys obsolete at Starwood hotels


Your iPhone is now a hotel key too: Photo: Starwood Hotels
Your iPhone is now a hotel key too: Photo: Starwood Hotels

The dream of replacing all the pieces of plastic in your wallet with your smartphone got a little closer to reality today as Starwood hotels announced that its new keyless entry system – SPG Keyless – is rolling out to hotels worldwide.

Guests at Aloft, Element, and W Hotels around the globe can now use their iPhone and the SPG app to skip the hotel front desk altogether, walk straight to their room, and unlock it, no key required.

The SPG Keyless system is debuting today in 10 hotels in markets including New York, Los Angeles, Hong Kong, Beijin, and Doha. The keyless entry also works on Android, but Starwood CEO, Frits van Paasschen, says his company is just getting started on changing the hotel experience.

“Not only does SPG Keyless alleviate a perennial pain point for travelers, but it also transforms the first interaction with our guests from one that is transactional to something more personal. This is just the beginning, because through mobile we have the opportunity to marry high tech and high touch to transform the hotel experience in many exciting ways.”

The new simplified check-in process is shockingly simple. Just download the SPG app and you can check-in up to 24 hours before your reservation, retrieve your room number and Bluetooth key. Then when you come to the hotel you go straight to your room, pull up the app and hold your smartphone up to the lock to open it.

Keyless entry will be available starting on November 5th, but Starwood hotels plants to bring SPG keyless to 30,000 rooms in 150 hotels around the world by early 2015 at all Aloft, Element and W hotels.