235 | Lodging Leaders Spotlight: Yotel a tech-forward brand worth watching


Taco Bell made headlines when it opened a 70-room pop-up hotel in August in Palm Springs, California.

It was a marketing scheme that lasted four days.

The day The Bell Hotel began to accept reservations, it sold out in two minutes.

The guaranteed novelty of staying in a Taco Bell hotel obviously paid off for the company, but it’s not the only fast food business that has ventured into the hotel space.

Ten years ago, Simon Woodroffe, founded YO! Sushi, which delivers food on a conveyor belt and has robots that deliver drinks. Woodroffe went on to use his technology and design prowess to co-create Yotel hotels with Gerard Greene.

Yotel began with technology-enabled sleeping cabins at airports.

Today, Yotel Hotels & Resorts is a sustainable hospitality company that recently launched an ambitious plan to expand its presence around the world.

In this episode we talk with Hubert Viriot, CEO of Yotel Hotels & Resorts for the past five years, about the company’s growth strategy.

Also featured is Christopher Grey, chief technology officer at Intelity, which recently teamed up with Yotel to scale its innovative, tech-forward guest-services platform.

And we include some audio clips of Woodroffe talking about the early vision for Yotel.

Resources and Links

  • 290 | DAY-CATIONS: Hotels turn guest rooms into private office spaces

    With hotel occupancies hovering around an average of 50 percent, owners and operators are seeking new ways to generate revenue beyond traditional overnight stays. One solution in the works is day use of hotel rooms. Hotel companies such as Red Roof, Hyatt Hotels Corp. and Hilton are promoting the practice during the COVID-19 pandemic. Ahead of the curve is, a day-use booking platform that is marketing hotels as the new office space. Long Live Lodging explores the unconventional use of hotels and how owners and operators can position their properties to attract day users. This is part of our ongoing coverage of the coronavirus crisis and its impact on the hotel industry.

  • She Has a Deal

    She Has a Deal is a hotel development competition in which all-women teams pitch their ideas to prospective investors to win $50,000 in equity toward their project. Tracy Prigmore, founder and CEO of TLTSolutions, a hotel investment group, created She Has a Deal to open doors for women interested in hotel ownership. Five teams will read more

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