Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Shake Shack's Death Star branch opens today


[Photo from last Friday]

The Shack Shack for 51 Astor Place/IBM Watson Building/Death Star at Third Avenue and Ninth Street opens this morning at 11.

Here's more via the Shake Shack website:

A reflection of Shake Shack’s relentless focus on excellence, experience and hospitality through innovation, the Astor Place Shack will introduce a new guest flow at the restaurant. Set to open its doors on Tuesday, October 10th at 51 Astor Place on the corner of 9th Street and 3rd Avenue, the Shack is designed to enhance operations and guest experience and will feature kiosk-only ordering, a cashless environment, and an optimized kitchen for greater throughput.

Custom-designed by Shake Shack, the Shack kiosk was developed to allow Shake Shack to serve more guests at peak times – whether in-Shack, for pickup via the Shack App, or even delivery – resulting in fewer lines, less wait time and quicker speed of service at every channel. Several kiosks will line the Shack and team members known as Hospitality Champs will be stationed around the kiosks to assist guests with their orders and answer any questions.

The Shack kiosk replicates the experience of the Shack App with a sharp aesthetic, an intuitive touch screen interface and ease of ordering. Guests simply select their food, place an order and choose to receive an alert via text when their order is ready. The new technology offers guests yet another way to experience Shake Shack – when, where and how they want it – and demonstrates Shake Shack’s commitment to digital hospitality. Earlier this year, Shake Shack launched a mobile ordering app for iOS and Android platforms and introduced the ShackBot, through Facebook Messenger and Twitter DM, to answer guests’ most frequently asked questions.

The Astor Place Shack presents an exciting testing ground for Shake Shack to strengthen operations and experiment with new and innovative ways of connecting with loyal fans. Building a business model to support digital innovation, Shake Shack will lead with a starting wage of $15 per hour to continue to be on the forefront of competitive wages and developing the leaders needed for growth.

A new guest flow... Hospitality Champs... ShackBots...

For some reason I think of this Gary Numan song now...

18 comments:

Anonymous said...

Yawn. Nice re-framing/spin on the lack of human cashiers. I'll be impressed when robots start making the crappy food as well as answering "important customer questions." Then they can do away with those pesky labor costs entirely — should be named Sh*t Shack.

Anonymous said...

Nice to know they're paying $15/hour; now they need to take my CASH. They can be cash-less (oh, so trendy!), but they'll be missing out on a lot of customers who will only pay cash.

DrGecko said...

Kudos to their copywriters (or their copywriting algorithm) for perfectly capturing the optical qualities of the location: "A reflection of Shake Shack’s relentless focus...."

Anonymous said...

Shake Shack had a two hour soft opening from 5:00 - 7:00 one day last week. I checked it out. Plenty of staff to assist, cook, serve and clean. Ordering screen was not clearly intuitive for me. What was easy is clicking on the upgrade (supersize) option. Also intrusive because they need your cell number to notify when food is ready.

There are some nice views available in a few seats, got pretty loud though. I was notified by text, picked up my bag which held a carry box which in turn held a wrapper with an off center patty with other ingredients thrown on haphazardly. Everyone was given one of those large and unnecessary bags.

Verdict: glorified McDonalds. Definitely better, but what is that saying? Still ended up with that vague "my stomach isn't happy" feeling 10 minutes after eating. The last time I had that very same feeling was over 15 years ago when I was trapped at an interstate rest stop with one choice - McD's.

Donnie Moder said...

Shake shack is to burger/fries what Starbucks is to coffee.

Anonymous said...

"I'll be impressed when robots start making the crappy food as well as answering "important customer questions."

Robots are already making the crappy food if you really think about it. We're all machines. Some code is more equal than others.

Anonymous said...

Now way I'm getting a text to tell me my friggin' burger is ready.

Anonymous said...

Danny Meyer was on 60 Minutes this past Sunday. He's taking tipping out of a lot of his restaurants to equal the pay between kitchen staff and the glam waiters and bartenders front of the house. It made me dislike his dorky hospitality group a bit less. Respect to the kitchen.

And to the above. Starbucks is McDonalds. Blue Bottle is ShakeShack or so says some Financial Times article I regurgitate. Sort of agree, so many Starbucks are dirty and run a little quirky.

Anonymous said...

I decided to try Shake Shack before the crowds today. For all the talk of the cashless system, I agree with 9:09 a.m. that the screens needed better cues. The fries were great and the burgers were rich, juicy and tasty--but they do sit like weights in your stomach and you know you are not eating something remotely healthy. Worth a try but not to die for.

Anonymous said...

Agree with @Dr.Gecko!

And as for getting my cell phone number: NOT gonna happen, not now, not ever; nobody gets my cell number for a HAMBURGER ORDER. How far away would I be that they'd need to text me? Do they shoo waiting customers out of the store?

I guess the hospitality industry is trying to help out Equifax & other consumer info "aggregators" by capturing both one's credit/debit card info AND one's cell phone number.

Giovanni said...

So to be clear, you need to give Shake Shack both your cell phone number and your credit card number, which means if you don't have your credit card on you, or have one at all, or you don't have a cell phone, or your cell phone is dead, you're out of luck. What's next, retina scans if you want to use the bathroom? It sounds like Shake Shack knows their demographic very well--and they don't want the kind of people (teens, seniors, working class families, homeless people) who eat at McDonalds. Just hope that in exchange for eating a burger your info doesn't end up in the hands of a scammer, but in all likelihood it eventually will, so you might end up with two cases of indigestion instead of just one.

Anonymous said...

@Giovanni: BINGO! You hit the nail right on the head.

As for excluding the oldsters, hey, no problem - when my grandkids are in town and I want to treat them, Shake Shack WON'T be on my list. And my grandkids don't have their own credit cards, so there you go! I don't think Danny Meyer can even accurately estimate how much business he's losing by not taking cash.

Anonymous said...

I have seen the future and I don't like it. Soon companies like this will give away food and services just to get more personal info. This "customer value cards" which track every purchase you make at Duane Read, CVS.... give you pennies off and you give them your consumer profile which they can use, share or sell to another party. The day we become a cashless society we are truly fucked. Use ad blockers on your browser, don't shop with Amazon / Whole Foods, Starbucks or use Seamless, Grub Hub or UBER. The sharing economy is about corporations sharing our information not a way to make a living.

Anonymous said...

Might as well go cashless, even if you go all cash data about you is being harvested. Go see a doctor, dentist, vet, pharmacy, withdraw money, pay bills, use metrocard, use insurance, travel, use a cell phone, windows computer? Eventually your PII either ends up somewhere like Salesforce. Retina scans can hit over a 30 foot range now. Your cellphone provider is already selling your number, even if you opt out.

Anonymous said...

EVG posting two weeks hence: "Shake Shack Closes". Or some appropriately short time period, to correlate with other short lived eateries.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous 10 October 11:59, I agree that there are activities in our lives which lead to the harvesting of data. (Unless you keep your money under your mattress, there are bank transactions. We pay our taxes and our utility bills. We use our insurance to pay for medical appointments. Our cell phones ping off towers.) But if I have the option of NOT having to provide my name, credit card number, and cell phone number for the privilege of eating a sandwich, I'd rather keep myself, as they say, to myself. I don't consent to give up ALL of my privacy, quixotic though that may be.

Anonymous said...

NEWS FLASH: 2 progressive couples over the age of 70 spotted using their credit cards at Shake Shack on Saturday night--Medicare was immediately hacked. In other news, 30-somethings forget itunes password, forced to order via kiosks...

Anonymous said...

Danny Meyer must watch Minority Report alot.

Shake Shack is for transients, tourists, and chain business sheep too lazy and/or stupid to get better burgers and fries elsewhere.

For example, Cozy Soup 'N' Burger on Broadway just off Astor Place has been in business for 45 years - nuff said. And they take cash, credit cards, and debit cards - no cellphone number required.