No Chicago hotel is complete without an ice dispenser on just about every floor. A commercial ice dispenser should be a convenient and accessible way for guests to get ice. When choosing the best ice dispenser for the Chicago hospitality industry, there are a few options.
So, what are the best commercial ice dispensers for hotels?
Dispensers vs. Commercial Ice Machines
Most commercial ice machines consist of the ice making machine and a storage compartment like an ice bin. If someone needs ice, an employee can scoop the ice out and dispense it into drinkware. This setup works great for Chicago bars and restaurants but is not the best option for the hospitality industry. Generally, guests need access to their own ice supply throughout the day. An ice machine and bin setup can lead to users contaminating the ice supply if they don’t follow proper ice handling techniques.
While an ice maker/bin setup is not best suited for a hotel floor, they are great setups for bars and restaurants located inside hotels.
Ice dispensers also include an ice making machine, but the ice storage container is closed to the public. Instead, the dispenser drops ice directly into drinkware by pressing a button or lever. There are even touchless options that require even less contact, reducing the chances of accidental contamination. Ice dispensers protect the ice supply, keeping your it safe and secure.
There are two types of ice dispensers that are popular in the hospitality industry.
The Best Ice Dispenser Models for Hotel Floors
Hotel ice machines are the most common ice machine you’ll find on hotel and motel floors. These stand-up units hold anywhere between 150-200 lbs. of ice but are compatible with a wide range of commercial ice equipment.
Hotel ice dispensers allow a lot of flexibility for Chicago hotels and motels. The dispenser allows owners to install a wide range of machines, so hotels can upsize to a high-volume ice machine as business grows. In addition, all hotel ice dispensers are ADA ice makers, so they are short enough to comply with federal guidelines.
Hotel ice machines are made to dispense ice into buckets, rather than drinkware. Since these units drop ice at a faster rate than small ice dispensers they can overflow glasses if the user is not careful, wasting ice.
The Best Ice Dispenser Models for Lobbies
Countertop dispensers are small and fit directly on top of a table or counter. These models are best ice dispensers for Chicago hotel and motel lobbies. Countertop models are also a great choice for restaurants that have a soda fountain where guests can serve themselves.
Countertop ice machines come in two styles: self-contained and those that require a machine. Self-contained ice dispensers come with the machine and storage all in one. Those that are not self-contained need a modular-style ice maker on top.
Some popular models of countertop ice makers include the Hoshizaki DCM-300BAH ice machine.
Choose the Best Ice Dispenser for Your Hotel or Motel
Choosing the best ice dispenser for a Chicago hotel can be difficult. Chicago is the hub for business and vacations, so hotels can see a lot of business during conventions and sports events. To choose the best ice dispenser you’ll need to have a good understanding of your hotel’s ice needs. If you need more information on choosing a hotel ice machine, check out our Hotel Ice Dispenser Guide.
Automatic Icemakers has been serving the Chicago hospitality industry for over 50 years. Our all-inclusive ice machine leases come with the best ice dispensers for hotels. We even cover maintenance, cleaning, and repairs.
We also provide service for existing ice machines and since the hospitality industry never sleeps, neither do we! If you’re having issues with your hotel’s ice machine, give us a call. We keep our phone lines open 24/7 to assist you with any problems that may arise.