* “Recharge” is new hotel app for quick last minute bookings
* Charges rates per minute
* Designed for people killing time or needing quick place to freshen up
Recharge, an app which allows users to book hotels by the minute, is launching in New York today. Officially launched last year, the service had previously only been available in San Francisco, where the company is headquartered.
So how does booking hotels by the minute work? Prices range from $0.83 to $2 per minute, in addition to a 14.75% lodging tax. Customers can book rooms at The Pierre, The W New York, The Knickerbocker and 1 Hotel Central, as well as 15 additional hotels in San Francisco.
While booking hotel rooms by the minute conjures up all kinds of nefarious ideas, founders state that the primary purpose of Recharge is to provide people with a room to freshen up and relax. Ideal for travelling businessmen, families who may need a break from shopping, or commuters who don’t want to sprint home between work and evening engagements, Recharge has been used by over 25,000 people to date. The length of the average stay is two hours. Furthermore, over 75% of users have used it more than once.
Co-founder and CEO Emmanuel Bamfo has said Recharge’s ultimate goal is, “to provide a bed, bath and shower at the right price point, no matter where you are in the world.”
Though it remains to be seen whether or not the app will work in New York (and worldwide for that matter), Recharge recently received an undisclosed amount from JetBlue Technology Ventures, a corporate ventures offshoot from JetBlue Airlines, which began investing in tech, travel and hospitality start-ups last year. Other investors in Recharge include Binary Capital, Floodgate and early Google engineer Henry Cheung. As of June last year, the company had received over $2.3 million in seed-funding from these, and other, investors.