A very unique hostel, “& And Hostel”, opens tomorrow, Aug. 19, along the covered Kawabata Shopping Arcade in central Fukuoka. Last night, we were given an advance look.
While most hostels are bare bones in terms of features and amenities, & And Hostel is definitely not. Produced with cooperation from a university and private technology sector companies, this is Japan’s first “smart” hostel.
Some of the rooms are outfitted with an array of gizmos and gadgets, some very functional and others maybe more for fun. Basic bunk bed dormitory accommodation starts at just ¥3,000 per night (without IoT). Private rooms with IoT (internet of things) features run from ¥9,500 to ¥12,800 per night.
Guests use an application on their smartphones to lock and unlock their rooms, and to control the air conditioning, lighting, aroma diffuser, audio/visual, and a “robot concierge” (called “Bocco”) that acts as an intercom to the front desk (there are around 10 different kinds of IoT devices in total).
Usually, each IoT device would need its own app (so for 10 devices you would need 10 apps), but & And Hostel has developed its own app (&IoT Platform Application), which allows you to control multiple IoT devices in your room using the one app.
On the first floor there is a restaurant lounge which is open to not only guests, but the public as well.