Ashford Castle Hotel.

Ashford Castle is the latest addition to the Red Carnation collection of hotels and has been fully restored far beyond its former glory. The technology that has been employed in a Castle that is over 800 years old is truly amazing.

Red Carnation hotels wished to keep the tradition of a Key, and yet be able to have a facility that provided security and the knowledge of room presence, in order that staff knew when a guest was in the room. And so, upon check-in, guests are issued with the “Key to the Castle”.

The guest simply hangs the key in the bedroom, and this in turn energises the room, highlighting to the hotel that the guest is present in the room. This thus ensures that the guest is not disturbed during room services, such as “turn down”.

The guest uses Vitrum glass panels to control temperature within the room, the dimming of their lights, the controlling of the blinds, underfloor heating, bathroom towel rails, and the Do Not Disturb and Make Up My Room functionalities. Micromaster is also deployed within the public areas and a selection of the “back of house” segments of the castle.

Micromaster by VDA provides a multipurpose tool for the management of the hotel’s personnel, security, and guest services. Both Housekeeping and Reception staff are issued with specific key cards that permit supervisors to monitor where they are within the hotel, facilitating their operations. For example, if a guest needs a towel, the housekeeper nearest to this room may be contacted to deliver one.

With regards to monitoring security, Micromaster permits the management to track who has entered and/or left the room and at what specifi c times. If a door has been left ajar for a given period of time, Micromaster sends an alarm to the reception desk to prompt a check on that room. All windows are also monitored, and the system will instigate the turning off of the air conditioning if they are left open for a certain period of time.

Both fi nancial and energy resource management at Ashford Castle are also facilitated by Micromaster. In terms of energy management, some of the benefi ts include the permitting of the air conditioning to be set at predetermined levels, to avoid excessive heating or cooling, the control of the lighting and all electrics (with the exception of the TV and specifi ed electric sockets) to turn on or off at a customisable set time after a guest leaves their room. These resource management features assist Ashford Castle achieve eco-effi cient operation, and respond to increasing regulations, and also help to control the associated costs and environmental impact linked with energy consumption.

Ashford Castle has been a movie location for many fi lms over years, but one of the most famous fi lmed there was “The Quiet Man”. The guest at Ashford may now enjoy a fully restored Video on Demand version made from the original master reel through the VDA ONAIR system, both in their guestroom and also in the hotel’s cinema.