How Technology is being used in Serviced Apartments
Friday October 23, 2015 by Alex Wood
Madonna famously once sang that ‘we live in a material world’ and although I realise I may be showing my age somewhat, I do think it’s high time that we updated her modernist mantra to read ‘we live in a technological world’!
Now don’t get me wrong - I absolutely love the Technological World and consider myself indescribably lucky to have been born into a time when technology not only makes our lives so much simpler than ever before, but also means that so much incredible information is more easily accessible than ever before. The scale of the internet alone is vast, encompassing videos of leaping cats, finding those favourite old tunes, self diagnosing injuries and many more ‘applications’. And we can tap into all this with the mere click of a button…or nowadays the swipe of a finger.
And this positive perspective doesn’t diminish when it comes to reflecting on my travelling life. It’s kind of easy to demonise the tech-savvy lifestyle which is sometimes touted as narrowing our horizons instead of expanding them, but for me that’s never been the case. To me, the tech-bashers show a lack of understanding of what technology can be, and is used for, to enrich our lives and add to our experiences. I know it may sound a little incongruous to praise technology as a tool for living a free spirited, travelling lifestyle but bear with me!
1. Technology keeps you connected with loved ones back home
Very, very important. No matter where you are in the world, one thing’s for sure – you’re going to want to keep in touch with your nearest and dearest when you’re away from home. One of the hardest things about traveling abroad is being away from your family and technology has made it possible to keep in contact in ways that just a few years ago seemed like sci-fi. OK, so we haven’t quite made it to teleporters yet but a simple skype call would have been mind blowing when I was 18! Ooops, showing my age again!
My pet hate is hotels that promote themselves as having WiFi and then when you arrive you find it’s only available in the lobby and even then only a tiny amount, so you’re forced to pay for an upgrade to contact home! Aaargh. Most serviced apartments on the other hand, have unlimited WiFi in each apartment which makes them a clear winner in my book.
2. Technology keeps you connected to online communities
Now I’d never have described myself as one for living a virtual life, but when I was simultaneously deprived of both broadband and mobile connections a few years ago (it’s a long story), I realised just how much I missed checking into Facebook to see what my own ‘online community’ of friends was up to. I suppose I could have called them, but I just didn’t. Maybe we all have more of a virtual life than we like to admit? When you’re travelling away from home the support of your online communities can be invaluable – even from the other side of the world.
Again, my point about internet access stands true here as well – free, unlimited WiFi is a must these days and most serviced apartments provide it, thankfully. Many even have fancy smart TV’s as well, so you can plug in your mobile device and use the big screen to check out your contacts and reconnect. Cool! Quayside Apartments in Cardiff even provide Wii consoles in the apartments.
3. Technology can help you plan your travels
I don’t know about you, but sometimes planning the trip can seem so much effort that I need a holiday to recover. Even on a business trip I feel obliged to make the most of my visit and cram in as much as possible, but what to do first? Luckily for overwhelmed people like me, there are so many websites and apps to help you find whatever you need and guide you round, that I sometimes think you could be dumped blindfold into a random city (and with the help of geo-location) find a pre-planned itinerary of the top 10 sights within 5 minutes. Even if you still don’t actually know where you are!
At Prestige Apartments we’re really proud of our London Video Guide which helps you plan your whole trip to London and even book all the tickets, restaurants, shows, etc. in advance – check it out here!!
4. Technology makes travel easier
Have you tried booking a flight, hotel or car hire these days without using technology? It’s pretty much impossible, right? Whether we like it or not, technology has become inextricably intertwined with our travelling needs. I feel it’s often for the better and I have to admit to feeling (in some weird way) a bit superior when I swipe my phone app boarding card whilst lesser mortals are clutching a scrappy piece of paper. How last century!
We’ll all be contactless soon, or waggling our phones at some hapless un-techie Barista! And certainly, there’ll be no more desperately searching through bags trying to find where you put the printed out the details of your booking or trying to negotiate a price for the local taxi service from the airport! There are Apps for that sort of thing, darling! And it can’t be underestimated just how nice it is to have everything you need all in one super compact place – on your smart phone. Well, until you leave the aforementioned all-singing, all-dancing piece of kit on the plane that is! Even then you could always use your other phone to track it!
Supercity’s Rosebery Apartments takes in-house tech to a whole new level with ipad’s embedded in the walls of the apartments (They’ll let you set your apartment temperature, download the appliance manuals and even order a take away from a local restaurant or get some local area info). Also in the pipeline for next year are the updated Go Native West London Apartments which will have self check pods in reception and a key coded swipe card for access to the apartments (and can also be used to purchase items at the on site shop and restaurant). If only they could take care of the bill as well!
5. Technology can help you reconnect with your home culture
I’m not a total media junkie but when I’m traveling it’s sometimes really great to catch up with a bit of familiar home culture. I know there’s a big world of new experiences waiting out there all ready to expand my horizons, but I do like the Great British Bake Off! It’s friendly, gentle humour and that garden fete, tented atmosphere just gives me sense of nostalgia that’s hard to beat. And again, this is where serviced apartments kick in. When I’ve been inspired by the aforementioned Bake Off, the kitchens are full of all the modern technology you could need to rustle up that taste of home before you can say ‘Mary Berry’.
I’m sure we all have our own Bake Off’s, whether it’s Breaking Bad, 24 or something as obscure as the Ice Hockey (Ok, if you’re Canadian, it’s not obscure). I often recharge when traveling by dipping into these comforting doses of cultural familiarity. When I come back out of them, I’m re-energized and ready to engage with the glorious unfamiliarity of my latest destination.
We live in a Technological World. Embrace it!
Prestige Apartments has a wide range of serviced apartments and vacation rentals on offer throughout the UK. We’ll have something to suit all budgets and group sizes so why not consider booking a serviced apartment for your next trip. Just get in touch with our friendly sales team and they’ll help you to choose your perfect family friendly apartment.
Tel: 020 7704 6514 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Posted by Alex Wood