2020: General Discussion

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Danny, 20th Nov 2019.

  1. Kraken27

    Kraken27 TowersStreet Member

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    Can't see Coca Cola being onsite for two weeks to support 7 Freestyle machines (or 14 if Towers are generous and double up on them at the stated 7 locations). These machines are tried and tested when looked after properly. Aah "looked after properly" - might have stumbled on something there.

    I can see the issues being the concentrate syrups running out & therefore giving an inconsistent choice of soft drinks across the park. (The syrups are not topped up manually, you have put in a complete new box. Given Towers desire for cost-cutting the daily checks will just be to open the machine & rattle each syrup box to check there is some product in there).

    The machines also have to be kept topped up with ice through the "roof" of the machine. This will require F&B staff to fill containers (buckets?) with ice from their ice units ice maker & go and tip it in the Freestyle machine. They'll need a small stepladder (3-4 steps) to do this safely - Towers can't risk any H&S injuries from lifting / over-reaching with heavy buckets of ice.

    Also, I can see that a "certain element" of guests will take their frustrations out on the machines when it does not dispense product as they are not using a chipped mug - either bought / re-activated on the day. You only have to look at the state of some of the other vending machines on-park.

    Finally, it would be good if the machines dispense chilled water to guests with a valid chipped mug - that would allow them to rinse their mug, then get their drink refill. (The Freestyle machines at Universal did, for a couple of years, dispense chilled water and ice to anyone - i.e. no chipped mug needed. They have since switched this feature off as they were clearly losing too much on the sale of ice cold bottled water. You can only get any product from the machines with a chipped mug now).
     
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  2. bluesonichd

    bluesonichd TowersStreet Member

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    I think VIP did get a free cup and refills from Thorpe.
    I never visited Thorpe last season tho. And seeing as VIP is dead I doubt Towers will give anything away free now. :(
     
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  3. siralgenon

    siralgenon TowersStreet Member

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    I've just noticed that the new 40th Anniversary Monorail video which shows what dates the attractions and hotels opened has the Dark Forest opening in 2011 not 2010 :tearsofjoy:

     
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  4. D4n

    D4n TowersStreet Member

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    Yeah well the spider crabs died so they had to think of something else for that year
     
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  5. ringo

    ringo TowersStreet Member

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    Must have been done by a non corporate, only one “resort” mention and no list of “worlds first” :D

    Good to see anniversary things happening though, really should be a year to celebrate
     
    Last edited: 24th Feb 2020
  6. WillPS

    WillPS TowersStreet Member

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    They're not boxes, they're more like big inkjet cartridges. And, like an inkjet printer, the Freestyle machine can show you roughly how much is left in each cartridge at a glance, either on the hidden menus on the device itself, or remotely.

    Unless they install plumbed-in ice machines, which is surely the only way to go for the volumes these things will be dispensing?
     
  7. ringo

    ringo TowersStreet Member

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    Don’t forget we’ve also got those fantastic Coke robots that transport supplies around the Resort.

    Those robots will come in very handy to keep machines stocked up while everyone uses the machines every 10 mins until the novelty wears off :D

    https://attractionsmagazine.com/alton-towers-coca-cola-robot/
     
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  8. GaryH

    GaryH TowersStreet Member

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    How messy are these machines in terms of spills? Will they become wasp magnets in the summer months?
     
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  9. WillPS

    WillPS TowersStreet Member

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    Pretty good to be honest, the drink is dispensed in a little cutaway part of the machine, you have to push your cup in a fair way to meet the stream.

    But yeah of course it will become a wasp magnet because every non moving fixture at Alton Towers does...
     
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  10. Ethan

    Ethan TowersStreet Member

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    Is there an event on the 7th march for john lewis
     
  11. Alsty

    Alsty TowersStreet Member

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    Aren't all the drinks sugar free?
     
  12. ringo

    ringo TowersStreet Member

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    No it’s Blue Light / services
     
  13. Rick

    Rick TowersStreet Member

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    'Standard' Freestyle machines you get in Five Guys, BK etc carry original coke and some others. The touch screen allows you to group drinks, so they're all in one place.

    Operators can deactivate certain drinks and categories, I am not sure if they did at Thorpe?
     
  14. Ethan

    Ethan TowersStreet Member

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    No that's 14th isn't it
     
  15. WL18

    WL18 TowersStreet Member

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    I work with Freestyle machines - they can be plumbed in so that any waste drains right away, so I doubt wasps will be an issue.

    In terms of ice, it can be manually refilled but ice machines can also be installed on the top which makes life far easier.

    They can be programmed to dispense chilled water when an RFID isn’t present in the settings, so hopefully they’ll enable this, but either way ice can be dispensed which will be good in the summer!

    In terms of drink selection running out, Each drink is made of 2-3 syrups mixed with carbonated water and HFCS (sugar) or NNS (sweetner) and these cartridges would easily last for a lot of drinks. The main issue we have with keeping all drinks available is that the cartridges have a pretty short shelf life so it’s difficult to get to know how many to order to reduce waste so this will probably be a teething issue.

    Coke also offer a rep to do a day or two team training and are available for call outs when theres issues which probably happens every 2-3 months for us where the machines pour up to 400 drinks a day.

    The machines also take about 15-20 mins to clean each night, and ice bins have to be emptied and deep cleaned at least weekly, so I wonder if they’ll add this into the job description of nearby food outlets or have a dedicated staff member going around sorting them all like they do with the toilets.
     
  16. AT86

    AT86 TowersStreet Member

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    Well lets just hope they don’t give the freestyle cleaning duties to the people doing the toilets.
     
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  17. Kraken27

    Kraken27 TowersStreet Member

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    I suspect Towers will de-activate the free chilled water without RFID being present, like Universal did. It would hit their sales of bottled water. Towers state that all the cold water in the taps of the toilet sinks is drinking water, so they can say free water is available. Keep the Freestyle machines as a premium / up-sale product.
     
  18. D4n

    D4n TowersStreet Member

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    Free water provision is no longer really an issue at Towers anyway, there are plenty of water fountains around the park now that you can fill up a water bottle at. One of the biggest improvements the park has seen in years.

    That isn't sarcasm by the way.
     
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  19. Boothy

    Boothy TowersStreet Member

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    Agreed.
     
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  20. bluesonichd

    bluesonichd TowersStreet Member

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    Towers have licensed HEX2 to be built at Westminster Palace
    [​IMG]
     
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