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Concierges at 10 InterContinental Hotels Will Be Among First to Use the iPad 2

March 11, 2011 at 8:40 AM | by | ()

It's iPad 2 day, in case you haven't figured this out already by passing mammoth lines at Apple stores on your way to work. Today is the day that the iPad 2 is available to purchase in store or order for home delivery online, and one of the first biters is a big one. InterContinental Hotels has bought up enough iPad 2s to outfit the concierges with them at 10 of their hotels, as soon as those babies arrive in the mail.

InterContinental is the first global brand to embrace the iPad 2, and the lucky concierges are at: InterContinental New York Barclay, InterContinental Buckhead Atlanta, InterContinental London Park Lane, InterContinental Hong Kong, InterContinental San Francisco, InterContinental Houston, InterContinental Dubai Festival City, InterContinental Shanghai Expo, ANA InterContinental Tokyo and the InterContinental Bali Resort. These properties will use the hot gadgets to dispense destination advice and "insider" travel tips, but the addition of cameras to the iPad 2 add a whole new option.

How FaceTime comes into the equation...

The concierges will be able to FaceTime chat with the guests: "The InterContinental Concierge team will utilize the new iPad 2's FaceTime for video chatting, thus allowing guests who book their stay at any of the participating Intercontinental properties a chance to book a virtual 10 minute appointment with one of InterContinental’s destination-savvy concierges via their MacBook, iPhone 4, iPod Touch or iPad 2.

Since InterContinental pioneered their iPad concierge use last year with the launch of the original iPad, they'll continue to offer the following services as well, just with the IPad 2:

InterContinental expects the Apple iPad to enhance its Concierge team's interaction with guests in various ways, including:
· Enhanced Maps and Directions - Rather than jot directions on a foldable paper map, Concierge teams will be able to provide exact directions, through interactive maps with high-resolution satellite imagery, close-up street views and detailed walking routes.
· Video Recommendations - Concierge teams' top local recommendations come to life in destination specific videos, a unique InterContinental feature. The Apple iPad will allow Concierge teams to present these short videos to guests, so they get a clearer idea of selected recommended activities even before they set off.
· Instant Booking Confirmations - Concierge recommendations of restaurants, performances and attractions can be clearly illustrated with vibrant images and sharp text, and bookings may be made and confirmed instantly by e-mail.

We're not sure we'll be as quick as InterContinental about updating our own iPad to the iPad 2, but Jaunted's story on how the new features will benefit travelers is swaying us over to the dark side bit by bit.

[Photo: Apple]

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