Interview: Sam Shank on the launch of HotelTonight in Ireland (video)

26 Oct 2012

HotelTonight CEO Sam Shank

An incredible new app that gets you the best hotels at the best rates and allows you to book immediately on your iPhone went live in the past week in Ireland. We caught up with the CEO of HotelTonight Sam Shank, who told us how it works.

HotelTonight, the first hotel booking app designed entirely for mobile devices, announced its Ireland launch at the Dublin Web Summit with initial hotel offerings in Dublin.

Every day at noon local time, HotelTonight offers same-day hotel deals and personalised hotel options in each of its 65+ destinations. Starting today, the app will now be available for spontaneous or last-minute travel within Ireland.

HotelTonight recently secured a US$23m Series C investment, led by US venture capital partners with continued participation from Accel Partners, Battery Ventures and First Round Capital. This latest round has helped to fuel the company’s worldwide expansion.

The first Irish hotel partners include the Croke Park Hotel, the Gresham Dublin, the Merrion Hotel, the Morgan and the Westbury Hotel.

The app, which is already a success in America and the UK, with more than 3.5m downloads to date, is designed to reach business and leisure travellers, as well as spontaneous locals.

“Supposing you are out for the night with some friends and decide to enjoy a few beers, you can ditch the car and just book into a hotel via the app and enjoy your evening safely,” Shank told

He pointed out that hotels can offer mobile bookers targeted impulse rates, improving revenue per available room. Because customers don’t know which rooms are on offer until 12pm local time that day, they cannot predict and wait for hotel-specific deals, meaning the brand value is not impacted.

Since HotelTonight’s launch in Europe just three months ago, it has grown and expanded quickly.

HotelTonight recently added Amsterdam to the app, and is now live in more than five markets in the UK. The company plans to open in other Western European markets in the coming months.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years