Lifestyle hotel brand Virgin Hotels has updated their mobile app, dubbed Lucy. The app incorporates several innovations in contactless features, including pre-arrival identity verification, cashless tipping and expanded room controls, that guests can employ from their smartphones.
The launch of the new and improved app comes only a year after the last upgrade, in July 2020, when the new features included mobile key functionality and guest room selection. In response to COVID-19 concerns, the app allowed guests to avoid touching and keeping track of a plastic room key as it could now handle everything from checking in to unlocking the room directly with mobile key capabilities.
The app kept its original features, including the ability to book stays, provide local recommendations, order room service, initiate service requests, and provide an up-to-date look at individual hotel happenings, news and programming.
Originally launched in 2015 as a “personal comfort assistant,” the newly updated version rolled out last week at Virgin Hotels in Nashville, Dallas, Chicago, and the recently opened Las Vegas with Virgin Hotels New Orleans coming this summer.
By joining Virgin Hotels’ Loyalty and Preferences program,The Know, guests can access the latest version of Lucy and its new features. By integrating with The Know program, Lucy now offers a seamless connection between one’s loyalty profile and the booking platform creating a personalized and streamlined guest experience.
“The Know program continues to gain popularity with our guests for its focus on personalization and surprise and delight offerings,” said Doug Carrillo, Chief Marketing Officer. “With the addition of the exclusive use of our app Lucy, Know members now have access to extraordinary experiences at Virgin Hotels.”
Lucy’s secure ID verification allows guests to safely check in and use their device as the mobile key. Virgin Hotels has built-in new features and several safeguards that validate one’s credentials, with the goal of ensuring a safer and more secure experience.
With the new cashless tipping ability available at most hotels, Lucy is now offering a safe, easy, and contactless way for guests to give gratuities to hotel staff. “Gone are the days of searching for singles or forgoing tips altogether,” reads a company press release. “Now, guests can simply use the mobile app to provide gratuities digitally to housekeeping, bell staff, and valet throughout their stay.”
Additionally, Lucy is “getting moodier” with expanded in-room lighting settings, including “Get Lit,” “Get Comfy,” and “Get in the Mood.” With the touch of a button, guests can set the scene in their room and control the light from the palm of their hand. These new features join the app’s existing capabilities, including mobile key functionality, thermostat and TV remote controls, and the ability to order room service anywhere in the hotel.
“In the era of ‘contactless everything,’ it’s imperative that we continue to prioritize our guests’ safety and security. With these new features, Lucy not only offers additional levels of convenience but also added peace of mind for our guests when traveling,” said Denise Walker, Vice President of Information Technology. “Virgin Hotels has always put the guest experience first, and we’re excited to launch these expanded features and create an overall more elegant user experience for our guests.”
Lucy will reportedly keep its original features, including the ability to book stays, provide local recommendations, order room service, initiate service requests, share feedback in real-time and provide an up-to-date look at individual hotel happenings, news, and programming. Users of the Lucy app can also access Apple Music and jam out to their playlists, exercise in the hotel fitness center with custom routines powered by Fitbod, and purchase hotel gift cards.
The updated mobile app is now live at all four Virgin Hotels in Nashville, Dallas, Chicago, and Las Vegas. Virgin Hotels recently announced an expansion of its presence across the US throughout 2021, welcoming three landmark properties in Las Vegas, New Orleans and New York.