In an interesting move, Marriott has installed hi-def, hi-priced Cisco Telepresence Suites at two hotels in Bethesda, MD and New York City. (Your TICKET editor conducted an interview with a Cisco exec via Telepresence last year, and I must admit, it really did feel like we were in the same room—except for the eye contact, which was a little off-kilter. But still…)
Marriott is not stopping with two hotels. You’ll soon find Telepresence at Grosvenor House (London), a JW Marriott Hotel; JW Marriott Hong Kong; Renaissance Sao Paulo; JW Marriott San Francisco, JW Marriott Marquis Miami; Renaissance Washington, DC; Atlanta Airport Marriott Gateway; and Dallas/Fort Worth Airport Marriott with more to follow.
It’s ironic that a big travel industry player would jump on the virtual meetings bandwagon, but Marriott sees this as a new revenue stream, and we think they are on to something.
It sorta works like this: A small group of U.S. based businesspeople would travel to say, New York, and have a meeting via Telepresence with a group of colleagues in say, Hong Kong. The business people on both ends would save money, time and jetlag by not having to fly overseas. Marriott would still make money by housing execs traveling into New York and Hong Kong in addition to its percentage of the fees charged for usage of the suite. Everybody wins.
Don’t Forget! BOOK ALL YOUR ONLINE TRAVEL VIA LINKS FROM THE TICKET!
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