Visiting the Henn na Hotel east of Tokyo, Japan may be one of the weirdest holiday experiences you ever had.
When you approach the front desk, you will see the hotel staff are a pair of giant dinosaurs that look like cast members of the Jurassic Park movies.
A pair of robot dinosaurs wearing bellboy hats welcome guests from the front desk at the Henn-na Hotel in Urayasu, suburban Tokyo on August. – The reception at the Henn-na Hotel east of Tokyo is eeriely quiet until customers near the robot dinosaurs manning front desk. Their sensors detect motion and they bellow: “Welcome.” It might be about the weirdest check-in experience possible, but that’s exactly the point at the Henn-na (“Weird”) chain, which bills itself as offering the world’s first hotels staffed by robots. AFP
Robotel is the world’s first hotel staffed by dinosaur robots that bellow “Welcome” when you approach them. These large robot dinosaurs gesticulating with their arms process check-ins through a tablet system that also allows customers to choose which language – Japanese, English, Chinese or Korean.
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Guests, both adults and children find them a little unnerving and bizarre, but also charming. It’s just something you have to get used to and it can take time.
Yukio Nagai, manager at the Henn na Hotel Maihama Tokyo Bay says he hasn’t “quite figured out when exactly the guests want to be served by people, and when it’s okay to be served by robots.”
As AP reports, “each room is staffed with mini-robots that look a bit like spherical Star Wars droid BB-8, and help guests with everything from changing channels to playing music. Even the fish swimming in the lobby run on batteries, with electric lights in their articulated bodies flickering on and off as they work their way around giant tanks.”
So why are the robot dinosaurs present in the hotel in the first place? According to the manage it’s because “relying on robots for everything from front desk duty to cleaning had proved an efficient choice in a country with a shrinking labor market.”
“It’s becoming difficult to secure enough labor at hotels. To solve that problem, we have robots serving guests.” Nagai said.
In the near future there may be humanoid-shaped robots that perform duties normally carried out by humans.