Innovation That Matters

Hotel offers each guest a favourite book, on Kindle

Travel & Tourism

When preparing for some shuteye in the city that never sleeps, one option is to settle down with a favourite book in New York’s Algonquin Hotel. Combining a long-standing literary tradition with one of the latest gadgets, the hotel is offering free loans of Amazon’s Kindle, pre-loaded with a book of the guest’s choice. The digital book service—which launched in September 2008 to coincide with National Literacy Month—ties in with the hotel’s literary roots, reminding guests that it used to be frequented by such fabled writers as William Faulkner, Gertrude Stein and Dorothy Parker. For guests whose decision-making skills are paralysed by limitless choice, the devices also come loaded with bestsellers and modern classics, as well as books written by members of the hotel’s famous Round Table, including Edna Ferber and Robert Benchley. Guests are free to use the devices anywhere within the hotel. It’s a win-win all round: customers try something new, Algonquin offers a personalised service using the latest technology and Amazon gives a select group of potential buyers first-hand experience of their product. (Related: Hotel offers reader-in-residence.) Spotted by: Bjarke Svendsen



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