Texas hotel lets guests flip coin for free stay

Hotel Indigo San Antonio at the Alamo is offering a novel promotion — letting guests booking two nights get one night free based on a coin toss.

Guests that book a two-night stay between Aug. 24 and Dec. 30, 2011 will receive a coin toss at check-in. If the guests win the coin toss, the 91-room upscale lifestyle hotel will comp the first night of their stay. The deal applies to rooms booked at the “Flip Ya For It” rate, which is the same as the hotel’s regular rate. It does not apply to rooms booked via third-party websites at discounted rates. This is the first time the hotel has individually offered such a steep discount deal since opening in April 2010.

“We’ve only been open a year, and we’re trying to create some traffic so that when guests come back, they stay here,” said Holly Evans, general manager at the hotel. “It’s just trying to create a buzz and make things more fun.”

While she did not have hard numbers projected, Evans said the potential loss of revenue from the deal could be made up by increased traffic both while the deal is on, during the slower part of the tourism season in San Antonio, and afterward as guests that enjoyed the hotel return to stay at it for future trips. The hotel is located in downtown San Antonio down the street from the Alamo.

“We’re hoping that the increase in occupancy will counteract the decrease in revenue. The increase in traffic ups your revenue from other outlets at the hotel like guests parking their car with the valet, eating at the hotel restaurant,” Evans said.

The idea for the promotion came from the hotel’s managing company TNJ Group of Companies, Albuquerque, New Mexico. Pranav Patel, TNJ’s vice president of operations, management division was at a bookstore/coffeeshop that was offering a free cup of coffee for customers if they won a coin toss, and Patel decided this could be applied to hotel rooms.

“If it’s a huge success, there will be others that follow in our footsteps,” Evans said. “We’re willing to take the gamble and be the guinea pig. It could go viral.”

A simple coin toss could get you a free room at the Hotel Indigo San Antonio at the Alamo. Photo by Nicu Bubulei/CC
A simple coin toss could get you a free room at the Hotel Indigo San Antonio at the Alamo. Photo by Nicu Bubulei/CC