Emirates Palace has raised the luxury stakes in the Gulf even higher by unveiling an ATM that dispenses gold.
The machine, which monitors the price of gold minute-by minute, offers small bars that weight up to 10 grammes engraved with the Emirates Palace logo, as well as a variety of coins.
Thomas Giessler, the inventor of the Gold to Go machine, chose Abu Dhabi because of its luxury atmosphere, and hopes it will tie in nicely with the region’s traditional ties in gold commerce.
“A gold machine should be made of gold,” said Thomas Geissler, the chief executive of Ex Oriente Lux AG. “This is now at a hotel made out of gold. It is the perfect place.”
Six coins of differing weights come engraved with a maple leaf, kangaroo and Krugerrand, symbols of the gold-producing nations South Africa, Canada and Australia.
Emirates Palace Hotel general manager Hans Olbertz said: “We seized upon this idea and, as one of the most exclusive hotels in the world, we wanted the Emirates Palace to play a pioneering role and be the first hotel in the world to offer its guests this golden service.”
The idea is aimed at both a souvenir and an investment. Gold is still one of the most sustainable forms of investment and is currently as a record high price due to volatility in the current global economic market.
The machine is armed with various security measures, including anti-money laundering software. If the machine develops a fault, it will automatically shut down.
A website that updates the price of gold every 10 seconds transmits the information to the ATM, which updates its rates every 10 minutes.
Emirates Palace is considered one of the most opulent hotels in the world. It picked up seven of the most coveted honours at last week’s prestigious World Travel Awards at a glittering gala held at The Address Dubai Marina.
Emirates Palace won “Middle East ‘s Leading Meetings & Conference Hotel”, “Middle East’s Leading Meetings ‘&’ Conference Resort 2010”, “UAE’s Leading Hotel”, “Abu Dhabi ‘s Leading Beach Resort 2010”, “Abu Dhabi ‘s Leading Hotel”, “Abu Dhabi ‘s Leading Meetings ‘&’ Conference Hotel” and “Abu Dhabi ‘s Leading Resort”
Commenting on the achievement, Janet Abrahams, Director of Sales and Marketing, Emirates Palace, said: ‘‘We are extremely delighted to win these high-class coveted titles in one strike which underpin our leadership and excellence in the region’s hospitality industry.
‘‘These prizes come as a vote of confidence in our hotel powerful brand,’‘she said.
According to her, the Emirates Palace has maintained its leading position despite the tremendous challenges the world tourism and travel industry has been experiencing over the past two years.
The World Travel Awards, now in its 17th year and the global travel and tourism industry equivalent of the Oscars, is helping to drive up standards of customer service and business excellence throughout the world.