One of Canada’s busiest hotels, this multi-themed property couldn’t find a booking engine capable of handling its many room types so b4 created one. For a themed property like Fantasyland Hotel in Edmonton, it is crucial that potential guests be able to search for and book the exact room type they want. One of Canada’s busiest hotels, guests travel from all over the world to stay in guestrooms styled like an igloo, a Polynesian paradise, an African safari and many more. In fact, Fantasyland boasts 11 different themes with a whopping 32 different room types at the 355-room property. Combined with the myriad package deals and promotions they offer, Fantasyland needed a booking engine capable of displaying and processing real-time availability for more options than most off-the-shelf products could manage.
Unable to find a booking engine that could meet its needs and also integrate with its existing property management system-Infor’s SoftBrands Epitome PMS-Fantasyland turned to b4, developer of the hotel industry’s premier fully-customizable reservations system and guest satisfaction feedback tool, to build a bespoke system.
“We’ve been extremely impressed with how responsive b4 has been to every request we’ve made, even after the booking engine went live. They’ve really taken ownership of the project and faced head-on the massive technical and logistical challenge that we gave them,” says Joseph Schuldhaus, vice president of information technology for Fantasyland’s owner, Triple Five Group of Companies. “The system b4 built for us makes it simple for guests to customize their stay with our special themed rooms, and to book groups, packages and add-ons-even on mobile devices-all of which have given our hotel a tremendous revenue boost. Plus, we can make changes to promotions on the fly, a feature not offered by other systems we considered.”
Triple Five Group’s other hotel property, West Edmonton Mall Inn, has likewise implemented the b4 booking engine and Feedback, the complementary state-of-the-art guest satisfaction tracking and management tool.
Hotels running Epitome and Infor’s other PMS, Medallion, already benefit from a two-way interface with b4. In addition to Medallion and Epitome, b4 has achieved two-way certification with Micros Opera, Agilysys Visual One and Datamagine, as well as InnQuest roomMaster. Crucial information such as room rates, inventory availability and guest profile data are automatically exchanged in real time between the PMS and the b4 online booking engine, ensuring that customers have an accurate view of booking options and increasing the speed of confirmation times. The interface delivers the benefits of the b4 booking engine without staff having to manage an extranet of rates and availability, nor must they manually enter bookings as they are confirmed.
But the sheer number of room types at Fantasyland-not to mention the necessity of having all of the room types be searchable and bookable from mobile devices, as well-required significant customization by b4.
“At b4, we take great pride in meeting our clients’ goals and objectives,” says Saar Fabrikant, president and CEO. “Fantasyland asked us to develop a wide range of difficult customization in a very tight timeframe-less than a month-but we pulled it off. We’re excited to have one of Canada’s most famous hotels online with us, and we’re proud that they’ve opted to implement nearly the entire suite of b4’s products.”
“Besides the functionality advantages offered by b4 and the firm’s willingness to do significant customization to the booking engine, there were some financial benefits to selecting b4 as well,” Schuldhaus says. “Unlike most booking engine providers, which typically charge a per-reservation commission, b4 allows hotels to pay an affordable monthly fee, regardless of the number of bookings we receive.”