Hotel guest asks for room service. Is shocked by what shows up at her door

@gogettersaraha/TikTok Olena Yakobchuk/ShutterStock (Licensed)

‘I think I was in shock and too stunned’: Hotel guest asks for room service, is shocked by what shows up at her door

'I wanted to take it home.'


Jack Alban


Posted on Feb 10, 2024   Updated on Feb 14, 2024, 12:33 pm CST

An Aloft hotel guest in Chicago requested a toothbrush. Shortly after, a robot came to her door with her requested item, along with a bunch of lollipops that were up for grabs.

TikTok user Sarah A. VanVactor (@gogettersaraha) uploaded the video online that shows, in what can oddly enough be described as, a “friendly” interaction she had with a robot that looks like a cleaning bin attached to wheels with lights.

Her awkward attempts at talking to the little guy look like something of the The Creator, minus all of the bloodshed, and folks who saw her post were smitten with Aloft’s delivery system, which the Daily Dot has written about previously.

“I called room service for a toothbrush. Look what arrived,” they write in a text overlay of their video as a robotic receptacle, with an open container filled with toothbrushes and lollipops, beeps, and chirps. A warm glow of light emanates from its base, almost inviting hotel guests to take items from inside. VanVactor grabs an individually wrapped toothbrush from the robot and proceeds to hit some dialog boxes on a touch screen featured on the device. Upon doing so, the robot chimes again and then begins to turn as she shuts her door, laughing, as the video ends.

“Lol not me talking to it,” she says, highlighting how it appeared that she was attempting to engage in a conversation with the robot, which looks like it could very easily fit into Big Hero 6 or Wall-E.

Commenters who saw the robotic hotel assistant were floored by its programmable behavioral patterns.

“I love the happy chirps and lil dance when you give 5 stars,” one person penned.

@gogettersaraha Lol not me talking to it #aloft #alofthotel #alofthotels #chicago #chicagohotels #chicagohotel #magmile #robot #robots #roomservice ♬ original sound – Sarah A. VanVactor

Another person also seems to have developed a close bond with the robot or was at least trying to. “Giving it any less than 5 stars would be evil,” they penned.

For someone else, they couldn’t understand why VanVactor wouldn’t have taken advantage of the unique candy opportunity she was afforded with the robo-delivery.

“The way I would’ve taken a whole handful of lollipops,” they said.

Another user couldn’t believe VanVactor wasn’t lollipopping it either, writing, “NOT EVEN 1 LOLLIPOP?” But, according to the TikToker, surprise may’ve been an element in her decision to not reach for a sweet treat.

“I think I was in shock and too stunned to grab a lollipop,” she penned.

Of course, hotels run by robots aren’t new: Japan has featured hospitality businesses that are staffed entirely by pre-programmed robotic staff members, including velociraptors. However, there are businesses, like Richtech Robotics, that sell less humanoid-looking robo companions more akin to the model that was featured in VanVactor’s video.

Richtech’s “Skylark” robot was designed with hotels in mind and the company’s website shows off how its functionality centers around retrieving and delivering items for hotel guests: “Skylark works together with an AI platform that integrates into your hotel to streamline operations and elevate your guests experience. Our AI platform intelligently responds to guest requests and dispatches a robot or a human, depending on the task,” the company writes.

Two different types of robots are shown off on Richtech’s website: one that is designed for bringing items to guests and another that’s made to clean up any messes or spills: it looks like a Roomba on steroids.

“If a guest calls asking for a delivery our AI platform dispatches Skylark to use the delivery module to pick up the item and quickly deliver it to the guest. If a guest calls asking for a cleaning service our AI platform dispatches Skylark to use the cleaning module to locate the mess and clean it up.”

The business promises “cleanliness that shines” and that its robot can get in “nooks and crannies” as a tool meant to assist maids who can focus on tasks that require a human touch.

Social Tables penned a list of hotel chains that have implemented robot and AI technology to improve guest experiences: Hilton worked with IBM to manufacture “Connie” in 2016, which became the “resident robot” at the McLean hotel in Virginia.

Aloft (the same hotel chain that VanVactor stayed in Chicago) officially became the first hotel with a robot butler, which they put to work at their Cupertino, Califonia location. Its main goal was akin to what VanVactor showed off in her clip: To surprise guests with room deliveries of item requests.

The Crowne Plaza in San Jose Silicon Valley (appropriate) also has a robot: “Dash, [who] is all about delivering snacks, toiletries, and other hotel amenities. When called, Dash makes its way through the hotel, using a unique Wi-Fi connection,” the outlet wrote.

The Daily Dot has reached out to Aloft via email and VanVactor via TikTok comment.

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*First Published: Feb 10, 2024, 12:00 pm CST