If you are considering installing CCTV in your hotel, what should a hotel CCTV system look like? probably isn’t the most important question that should be asked. As specialists in installing hotel CCTV surveillance systems, our advice would be to focus on the rationale as to why you should have CCTV.
Known as defining “your operational requirement” this exercise determines subjects such as what the system will be used for, how the system will be deployed, how the system will be operated and what you will be doing with the data stored. For the majority of hoteliers, the safety and security benefits of a good well-designed system will be providing many benefits.
That is not to say that aesthetics is not important, as no-one wants to have a beautifully designed hotel, only for its decor to be spoilt by the sight of ungainly camera’s mounted to walls and ceilings. However, the practical approach would be to ensure there is a careful balance between aesthetics and the need to ensure employees and guests feel safe and secure whilst staying at your hotel.
Fortunately, modern CCTV systems and surveillance cameras are much sleeker in design and many manufacturers offer varied mounting types and sizes, offering both fully overt and other discreet versions to blend in with décor.
Does your hotel need a CCTV System?
All hotels would benefit from installing CCTV, not just the Hotels in higher risk areas where the threat of criminal or terrorist activity is high. A well designed and installed system will give many benefits as the image data will be of high definition will allow good identification of subjects and incidents captured. CCTV can not only be used for staff and guest security, but can be used and assist in health and safety, marketing & general day to day running of the Hotel, such as staffing- CCTV can be used to identify areas that are busy with customers and staff can be deployed to meet demand.
What areas should you protect?
The most common areas that benefit from having CCTV installed include:
- ENTRANCES: Camera’s will usually be positioned externally and internally to record people coming and going from the hotel. A properly installed camera will allow good identification of persons entering and leaving the premises.
- CAR PARKS: The parking area should also have cameras at strategic points as this helps reassure guests that their vehicles will be safe. Their presence will also help to deter criminally activity. Modern units can also have ANPR built in, and integrate into your access control system to give you control of vehicles that can or can’t enter.
- GUEST RECEPTION/FOYER: The reception area should also be monitored. Most hotels require people to check in and out via the reception desk, this area would have high footfall traffic, and CCTV can be used to monitor the area for safety and security, with added analytics such as unattended baggage detection.
- SPA/GYM/POOL AREAS: Other places to consider are recreational areas such as indoor pools, gyms and or spas. CCTV images can display these areas to allow monitoring for health and safety purposes, especially in pool areas unsupervised by lifeguards.
- STORE ROOMS: Overt or covert camera’s in store rooms can help to prevent theft, particularly if valuables or sensitive information is being stored.
- CORRIDORS: Due to limitations within data protection laws, human rights and privacy laws, deployment of cameras in hotel bedrooms and changing rooms is not permissible, but cameras strategically placed in corridors, will allow data and images of persons entering and leaving rooms to be recorded.
- BACK OF HOUSE: These include service exits and stairs. You may not think it’s necessary to provide security in these locations because guests don’t normally use them, but these areas can be subject to criminal or other activity. Surveillance cameras in these areas will deter any activity, and also provide good security and health & safety monitoring.
What CCTV to install?
Determining how many and the type of cameras you need, where they are to be positioned, what they will monitor, and for how long, are critical questions that should be answered.
It is best to appoint an approved installer, like Tecserv UK which has SSAIB accreditation, who will be able to assess your needs and recommend the right CCTV surveillance system and manufacturer.
How to monitor CCTV camera’s
This will include providing advice on the type and location of camera and how best to monitor them from a central point. Sometimes the best location in a hotel is to have the monitoring station discretely positioned below the reception desk, as the desk is invariably manned 24/7. However, some hotels, particularly if they are part of a larger chain, prefer all systems linked and monitored centrally in a security control room operated by a trained security team.
Installing CCTV in your hotel?
Tecserv UK has distributor agreements with most CCTV system manufacturers. If you would like to show your employees and guests the that you care about their safety and security, installing CCTV in your hotel is a great way to demonstrate this and give added reassurance.
If your hotel or new build hotel project requires CCTV, or you’d like to discuss the maintenance or upgrade of an existing CCTV system, please get in touch.