Renovation Update: Mid-scale Hotel Operators Buy RFID Locks for Cool Factor, Efficiency

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Holiday Inn Knoxville, Hotel Harrington in Washington DC, and Howard Johnson Admiral Inn Convert to Cost Saving ‘Contactless’ Locks

The ILCO 790 electronic lock from KABA.

The ILCO 790 is reliable and the convenience and quality is excellent. Our guests return keys as they check out and the system is very cost effective.

A growing number of hotel operators can speak at length about the value, safety, and reliability of converting to RFID locks for their guest room doors, but at least one of them has another favorite benefit that is short and sweet: “Our guests think they are cool.”

Holiday Inn Knoxville: Cool and efficient
The 283-room Holiday Inn Knoxville is upgrading to RFID electronic door locks as part of its recent renovation project. “We opted to install RFID locks because it is current technology,” said Ryan Cazana, the property owner’s representative. “ILCO 790 electronic locks from KABA are more reliable than any other locking system, so our guest keys work every time. We virtually never have to issue replacement keys. RFID locks cost about the same as magnetic-stripe systems and our guests like them.”

An additional benefit that Cazana noted was KABA ILCO’s professional installation service. “The ILCO installation team was very professional and retrofitted the new RFID locks during our property renovation to accommodate the hotel’s schedule.”

Hotel Harrington: RFID locks are ‘Exactly what I wanted’
Ann Terry, general manager of the 97-year-old Hotel Harrington in Washington, DC, is also pleased with her property’s RFID lock conversion. “We used iron keys until recently,” she said. “I spoke to KABA about RFID lock technology and they offered to install one ILCO 790 lock on a storeroom as a trial. It was exactly what I wanted—effortless to use and reliable.”

Terry was so impressed that she had KABA install RFID locks on all Hotel Harrington’s 300 guest room doors. The retrofit to the older property went smoothly. “Many of our doors are quite old, but KABA’s team was experienced at fitting the new ILCO RFID hardware to the existing doors. They only took 10 days to do all our rooms. The installation team went from floor to floor with minimal guest inconvenience. The ILCO 790 is reliable and the convenience and quality is excellent. Our guests return keys as they check out and the system is very cost effective.”

Howard Johnson Admiral Inn: RFID locks are sealed against the elements
The Howard Johnson Admiral Inn on Tybee Island, GA, chose ILCO 790 RFID locks for their dependability. “RFID keys are easy for guests to use,” said Shawna Starks-Allen, hotel manager. “We have two outside entrance doors that also have RFID locks now. These locks are ideal for us because they are sealed against the elements.” Ms Starks-Allen also noted that her original locks were 15 years old and were failing. The company that sold them to her property would not replace the old locks without considerable expense. “The cost for the ILCO 790 RFID locks was comparable to my previous vendor’s units, so it was an easy decision to install the latest and easiest to use technology.”

KABA, Saflok, ILCO
KABA is a globally active, publicly traded security corporation. With its “Total Access” strategy, KABA specializes in integrated solutions for security, organization, and convenience at building and information access points. KABA is also the world market’s number-one provider of key blanks, key cutting and coding machines, transponder keys, and high-security locks. It is a leading provider of electronic access systems, locks, master key systems, hotel locking systems, security doors, and automatic doors.

Saflok joined KABA in 2006. Saflok is a market innovator with 30 years of experience designing, manufacturing, and distributing electronic locks and systems. Its solutions are installed globally in the hospitality, lodging, multi-housing, and commercial markets. Saflok is committed to delivering best in class solutions that help properties achieve improved operations and reduced costs.

ILCO is a division of KABA. The ILCO brand is known worldwide for electronic locks that offer exceptional quality and technology innovation at competitive prices. ILCO is also a leader in key blanks, automotive transponder technology, key cutting/duplication machines and brass replacement cylinders.


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Dena Reyes

Julie Keyser-Squires, APR
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