Hotels and accommodation facilities, restaurants, travel agencies, tourist offices are increasingly called to revolutionize their offer with innovative technology solutions. From the management of high-efficiency facilities that use electricity, heat and water in a sustainable way, to ICT systems to make buildings smart and safe, to digital solutions that enrich and facilitate the travel and accommodation experience.
The four clusters in the Sentinel project are developing a strong partnership in order to help their SMEs in exploring, identifying and selecting new and emerging markets where the hospitality sector is creating new opportunities. But what are the areas of expertise of SMEs involved?
Technology innovation for hospitality
Architecture and building, interiors furnishings and equipment
Systems and solutions for smart and safe buildings
Energy efficiency and water management
ICT solutions for booking, marketing and enhancing the tourist experience
The SENTINEL project puts together companies from sustainable architecture and building. interiors furnishings and equipment, energy efficiency and renewable energies, water management and ICT.
Architecture and building, interiors furnishings and equipment
Companies operating in the following sectors related to home interiors and contract (hospitality and
- Furniture and carpentry (room, dining, outdoor, upholstery, wardrobes, doors, …)
- Lighting (decorative, technical)
- Fabrics (curtains, home fabrics, technical, bedding, restaurant, …)
- Flooring (vinyl, laminate, wood, carpets, …)
- Wall coverings (paper, textiles, wood, laminate, vinyl, …)
- Sleeping (mattresses, bedding, …)
- Decorative elements (paintings, …)
ICT – Information & Communication Technologies
Within the Hospitality sector, ICT companies can work along the whole value chain:
- Smart systems to optimise and make smart and safe building and districts. To this matter, ICT companies offer systems for:
- the measurement, monitoring and management of consumptions of any energy carrier (e.g., electricity, water, gas) and new models of interaction between end users and building;
- integrated and secure building management for a greater inclusion and to improve the users’ quality of life;
- domotics and automation solutions for hotels and other accommodations that allow to centrally
monitor, manage and control architectural and interior lighting, thermostats, security, access, digital signage and distributed audio and video throughout the venue.
- Systems and solutions for promotion and marketing, booking and management to be apply in all phases of the hospitality lifecycle (hotels and other type of accommodations, restaurants, travel agents, tourism offices, etc.)
- Systems and solutions for enhancing the tourist experience as added value for the hospitality sector. ICT companies offer advanced and innovative solutions able to gather data that can be translated in information about the customers’ behaviour, interests and needs, which helps to improve all processes and enhance the offering. In particular, IoT and Big Data applications will allow travel and hospitality companies to integrate advanced analytics and machine learning to adapt their offer to customer behaviour in real time as well as web and mobile, and advance Ux and UI enable a new and immersive tourist experience.
Energy companies provide innovative technologies which are situated in the value chain of manufacturing building materials & energy technologies (e.g. facades; biomass, solar, …), component suppliers, contractors. The relevant value chain parts of the contract-hospitality market for energy companies are:
- Energy-efficient building: solutions characterised by resource-saving manufacture, natural materials, sustainability and energy-efficiency
- Solar & energy storage: the possibility to use solar thermal systems and photovoltaic is given everywhere. Especially in the hospitality sector in countries with a lot of sun the payback period of these products is short
- Biomass: biomass heating systems include the following features which are interesting for the hospitality sector. The fully automatic operation (automatic ignition and shutshow, fuel supply, ashremoval, heat exchanger cleanting) is very convenient. High fuel efficiency (80-90 %), ultra-low emissions, very high o peration and fire safety standards, low fuel costs and the potential to combine the system with solar
thermal systems, using an accumulator tank (storage tank) are other advantages which are very interesting for the hospitality sector
- Contractors/plant operators that finance, install and operate plants at the premises of the client. Main
advantages are renewable energy supply without own investment and risk of the client at a guaranteed price
Companies on the water chain in hospitality and tourism sector work with:
- Swimming pool and spa zones. Innovative systems to optimize the management and reduce the water, energy and chemicals consumptions related to spas and swimming pools. These innovative solutions and processes will also benefit at H&T customers (for example, by the reduction of chlorine products).
- Irrigation processes. Innovative solutions to reduce the water consumption and improve the management of the irrigation zones.
- Wastewater and grey water treatment. Companies are working to install, develop and improve the wastewater treatment to reach the standards required by the legislation and to avoid the typical problems of this type of processes (such as odours, visuals impacts and noises). Moreover, some of these
companies are working to develop and install solutions in order to separate greywater from blackwater and to treat and reuse greywater for nondrinking purposes, such as irrigation. Several companies can offer solutions for water disinfection, while other companies are developing solutions that are totally integrated at the H&T landscape, using artificial lagoons or wetlands to treat the used water.
- Drainage systems. To ensure the correct water management is essential a good maintenance of the drainage systems. Moreover, there are companies working on optimizing the drainage systems with new configurations and materials.
- Water supply. There is the possibility to find other water supplies at the H&T installations. For this reason, some SMEs perform studies to identify groundwater resources in order to reduce the costs associated to the water and diversify the risks of having just one water resource. Moreover, there are systems to evaluate the possibility of using rainwater as the third water resource and there are some H&T companies that are already using it.
- Water consumption monitoring and tools. There are companies working on the development of data gathering processes, tools and software to evaluate and control water consumption at H&T sector. There is a tool call “Water footprint” that could be an important indicator to evaluate the water consumption at the H&T facilities, not only for being able to communicate the water consumed, but also to have identified the highest consumption points in order to try to optimize them.