Pennyhill Park, Ascot

Pennyhill Park, Ascot

Client: Exclusive Hotels Group
Type of works: supply and implementation of the Genesis GSM all-in-one comms system from Call Systems Technology.

An award-winning 5-star Exclusive Hotel and Spa improves staff communication for conference, housekeeping and maintenance staff - and slashes call costs

Pennyhill Park, the award-winning country house hotel and spa near Ascot, has installed CST's new Genesis GSM private mobile phone network, that has not only dramatically improved communications between staff, but also started to slash the hotel's phone call costs.

Set in 123 acres of rolling Surrey parkland, Pennyhill Park offers everything from five-star spa breaks and treatments, along with its own golf course, to fine wines, superb dining and impeccable service in their two award winning restaurants. But while the hotel's standards remain legendary, the historic Victorian mansion at its heart was designed in a pre-telephone era, and the management wanted to improve staff communications.

"We found we were using a variety of systems - mobiles, paging and two-way radios - to ensure our staff could communicate. Even national mobile did not give us full coverage" said Duncan Couper, Pennyhill Park's Front of House Manager. It was getting complicated and inefficient - and was affecting customer service. They needed extra training to work it all, and phone call and management costs were rising.

"We were looking for a new solution that would reduce this complexity and rising phone call costs, and at the same time give us total communications throughout the hotel."

The solution came this year with the latest Genesis GSM from Call Systems Technology. Genesis GSM allows a conventional mobile to act as an 'all-in-one' device; pager, two-way radio, DECT phone and alarm alert. It integrates to the site's PABX to automatically route outgoing calls for the lowest possible cost.

Genesis GSM is a robust and reliable system that was able to use the existing IT infrastructure to give complete coverage in all areas of the hotel and spa, including the driveway and helipads, the facilities offices, and even parts of the golf course.

"The installation has made a huge difference to Pennyhill Park", says Duncan Couper. "In essence it means our staff can use one mobile handset throughout the hotel for all communications systems.

"Staff can call and text each other free of charge when on site. They can dial out using least-cost routing, because they are effectively part of the hotel's internal phone system. Text mesages from Genesis Messaging Software can be received on the handset along with critical Fire Alarm alerts."

Duncan Couper is delighted at just how quickly Genesis GSM has become a key part of the hotel's operation. Already there are plans to add modules to expand the system's reach and flexibility. These include additional pagers for fire marshalls, valets and housekeepers, along with Genesis task manager software, and an interface to their vehicle recognition system.

The training required for the Genesis GSM system was very simple because staff already have experience with mobile phones in every day life.

Crucially, the Genesis GSM system allows room for growth, permitting further expansion throughout Exclusive Hotels Group to provide all inter-site phone calls to be made free of charge.

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