Travel

If you love all things strange, check into Japan's robot hotel

Don't worry, these dinosaur robot receptionists at the new Henn na Hotel Maihama Tokyo Bay in Japan don't bite
 

Photo: Henn na Hotel Maihama / Facebook

Travel agency H.I.S. yesterday celebrated the opening of its second robot-staffed Henn na Hotel, conveniently located near Tokyo Disney Resort in Urayasu, Chiba prefecture.

Henn na Hotel means "strange hotel" in Japanese. But its website says one of the definitions of the Japanese word "Henn" is "to change", and that it represents the hotel's commitment "in striving for the extraordinary sensation and comfort that lies beyond the ordinary".

There are plans to launch 100 more such hotels, including some overseas, within the next five years, reported The Japan Times.

A staff member of the hotel told the paper that about 80 per cent of available reservations are booked until the end of this month.

The first Henn na Hotel - opened in July 2015 in Sasebo, Nagasaki prefecture - was recognised by the Guinness World Records in November last year as "the first robot- staffed hotel" in the world.

In Chiba, the six-storey building features 100 rooms and uses about 140 robots. Seven human employees are on site at all times to offer assistance, particularly in emergencies.

This article was first published on The Straits Times on March 16, 2016.