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Yobots, Lady Gaga's Papa and a Digital Nomad's Wet Dream are Coming to the Yotel

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  Site Where: 570 10th Ave [map], New York, NY, United States, 10036
May 9, 2011 at 12:50 PM | by | ()

Without a doubt, we are geeking out over the arrival of Yotel Times Square, set to open on June 1st, thanks to the combination of affordable (somewhat) lodgings with pure high-tech fun like touch screen check-ins, retractable beds, free WiFi and mood lighting. Oh and the Yobot.

Yes, when the Yotel opens it will have a robot on site whose sole job is to store your luggage into lockers in the lobby. The NY Times reports:

Itís just a robotic arm, not humanoid like [The Jetsons' robot] Rosey, and itís as much entertainment for passers-by as it is utilitarian. Your bag goes on a slab that Yobot then picks up and slides into one of 133 lockers, usually with a flourish of dipping, twisting and other acrobatics. You get back a bar-coded ticket, which you insert into the system when you want Yobot to return your bags.

You can use Yobot when you have extra luggage that you don't want taking up precious space in the rooms or if you arrive before check-in time and if you need to store your stuff after check-out but before your flight/train ride. Right now, it doesn't look like there is a fee to use Yobot and best of all, no awkward tipping of bellmen needed.

In other tech news concerning the Yotel, we learned that Lady Gaga's papa, Joe Germanotta and his GuestWiFi company, now a division of SpotOn Networks will be doing the WiFi for the hotel. WiFi is totally free, which we already knew, but Germanotta told us that you will actually register your devices at the check-in kiosk to get the free WiFi. You can also register multiple devices so you won't get double-dinged for each device you sign onto the internet with.

Lastly and perhaps most importantly, Yotel has a massive restaurant/nightlife concept from Chef Richard Sandoval called Four. And as the name suggests, there will be four spaces for guests to drink, eat and socialize.

At the Dohyo sushi restaurant, while the space is designed in the size and shape of a Japanese sumo wrestling ring, the focus instead will be on the long communal tables that rise out of the floor thanks to a patented Yotel hydraulics system. Once dinner time is over (small plates with "flavors, ingredients and techniques from around the world") the tables will lower back into the ground, clearing way for a dance floor or a performance space. [Ed. Note: Must get video of this. Must.]

Outside at the Terrace restaurant will be NYC's largest outdoor hotel patio serving up "pitchers of cocktails, bowls of punch, and steins of beer", no doubt giving the Standard's biergarten a run for their money. A smaller Green Lounge will overlook the Terrace for those who want to stay clear of the madness below.

Lastly, the Club Lounge is a hybrid work-socialize space with glass-enclosed Club Cabins available to rent by the hour or the day that come with banquette seating, a coffee table that can flip out to a full-sized table, a flat-screen TV and a video game console. OMG, fellow Digital Nomads, this is what we've been waiting for! You can even order food and bring it back to your cabin in bento-style boxes. Brillz.

But should you want to burn the midnight oil in a cabin, the bar in the Club Lounge opens up at night and will even feature DJs on the weekends. So no work will be done once that starts up.

Yotel will also have a Mission Control concierge desk where you can get snacks and gear to go along with your questions about the city as well as a Studioyo where you can do yoga, hold meetings and host private events.

Now that we're seeing the public spaces come to life, and that they have so much more to offer than most NYC hotels (free wine hour? That's sooo 2008!), we're starting to think the $149 and up asking price for a room at Yotel might not be so bad. Just keep your fingers crossed that this hotel can stay mostly affordable, even as it takes off.

[Photo: NY Times and Yotel.com]

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