Trends in coffee never cease to surprise and as the hotel industry has embraced the concept of great coffee, Zara Horner discovers the equipment helping to achieve this.

For some time now the world has expected a coffee on just about every corner. From Seattle to Singapore – and everywhere in between – hundreds of thousands of cups of Jo are produced and consumed each hour.

As coffee lovers become more discerning, and demanding, Schaerer’s head of marketing and coffee competence centre, Sarah Ognibeni notes “Consumers expect coffee from a fully automatic machine to be in no way less tasteful or visually attractive than the creations of a barista.”

The hotel sector is an important and growing market for the company. “Schaerer coffee machines are continuously developed with the aim of providing our customers innovative technologies for unique coffee enjoyment – virtually any coffee wish may be fulfilled at the touch of a button!”

Schaerer coffee machines have a modular design and can be adapted exactly to requirements.

“For example, the Schaerer Coffee Soul offers cutting-edge technology and elegant design,” Ognibeni says.

“With an output of up to 250 cups a day the coffee machine is perfectly suited for self-service during hotel breakfast. The Best Foam milk system is included for milk foam a barista would be proud of.

“Recently we launched new optional accessories designed to be the perfect complement to the narrow design of the unit and to offer hoteliers maximum flexibility for the best possible organisation of their work and supply processes, even in the smallest of spaces.

“The product range includes a Cup & Cool System as well as a cup warmer in wide and narrow models, and an under-machine milk cooling unit with a capacity of 9.5 litres. There’s also a striking visual highlight: integrated lighting in a choice of colours which enhance any individual restaurant styling.”

Meanwhile, the Coffee Link telemetry system allows real-time data analysis as well as location-independent access to the coffee machine.

Schaerer’s Barista coffee machine concept is for hotel bars and lounges “which celebrate the Italian espresso tradition and which want to offer their guests perfect espresso-based coffee specialities without having to employ staff with barista expertise,” Ognibeni says.

The fundamental principles of a portafilter machine are combined with the easy operation and process reliability of a fully automated coffee machine. Quality-related processes such as grinding, dosing, tamping and milk temperature control are all handled.

“All the operator has to do is insert the portafilter and select the desired beverage. At the same time, a typical array of sounds accompany what would have been traditional steps such as knocking out the filter or frothing the milk manually,” Ognibeni points out.

At the end of the year, Schaerer will be taking the quality of cold coffee specialities to “a whole new level” with Coffee Soul’s ‘Hot & Cold’ technology.

Ognibeni explains, “Under the motto of “brewed hot, served cold”, the coffee-based beverage will be brewed conventionally at 90 °C and cooled to 30-35 °C during the dispensing process using a special beverage cooling system. This allows summer specialities such as iced coffees to be prepared rapidly and with an intense flavour. The ice cream or ice cubes used keep their shape for longer, the beverage stays cool and dilution is reduced.”

Quality at quantity

Bravilor has been providing coffee and beverage systems since 1948 and sales manager, Peter Kaas says today hotel chains – especially at five and six star levels – offer their guests a wide variety of specialty coffees, “so their equipment must be the best just as they are.”

Bravilor Bonamat introduced the Sego compact espresso machine and the Esprecious-series with FreshMilk unit earlier this year in Singapore.

“The Sego is an economical compact machine with a small footprint,” Kaas explains. “It’s very easy to operate and maintain and is fitted with the revolutionary CIRCO-brewer. The Esprecious range suits many locations while the B-series and Aurora range are the ultimate solutions for banqueting and breakfast buffets in locations where large fresh brewed coffee quantities are needed in a short period of time.”

Kaas notes, “Getting skilled and qualified HORECA staff in the ‘coffee scene’ has become more and more of an issue. That’s one of the reasons we are manufacturing more fully automatic coffee systems as it is becoming of interest to offer constant and good quality coffees.”

Specialising innovation

German company WMF, founded in 1853, has been part of French Groupe SEB consortium since 2016. Spokesperson, Monika Nyendick says, “the new bean-to-cup machine WMF 1500 S+ combines the technological sophistication of a high-performance automatic machine with the requirements of a medium-sized coffee output.

“Designed for a recommended daily capacity of 180 cups and with a slimline footprint of just 70.6 cm width and 59 cm depth, it features an impressive array of innovations in its interior.

“For example, the new ‘Dynamic Coffee Assist’ ensures top quality espresso-based coffee specialities because of continuously measured grinding and extraction times. The unit also has integrated Milk Excellence sensors which play a crucial role in diligent perfect hygiene and protect the system itself, as they measure flow and temperature without contact. Convenience is further enhanced by an automatically adjustable spout, and a new Choc mixer.”

The large 10-inch touch display has options for handling videos, nutritional information or promotional offers, and if deviating results occur the system automatically adjusts settings.

Hotels are part of a growing and important market for Italian company La San Marco as well and Simone Rizzolo, sales area manager says, “It’s an incredibly fast-changing market that we work hard to stay on top of.

“More and more hotels are focusing that all-important first impression at the coffee shop or bar in the lobby or reception area.

“It has long been customary to welcome new guests with a drink and this has increasingly involved the coffee shop area so that needs to be not only professionally prepared but also attractive.

“La San Marco has always had an eye for aesthetics as well as the technical aspect of its products and with all that in mind we launched Leva LUXURY.

“The mechanical extraction machine builds on last generation technology of the Leva CLASS system by adding the electronic temperature control PID system for safer, easier use and in compliance with international safety standards,” Rizzolo says.

Additionally, an innovative new-look tempered glass body with multi-coloured LED technology makes for a strong visual impact.