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HotelTonight is taking its latest round of funding and running with it.
The same-day hotel booking app has expanded into Central Europe with three new markets. It has also released the latest version of its iPhone app for iOS7, added a number of new features, and debuted its new HighRoller option.
HotelTonight connects travelers with last-minute deals on hotel rooms. Every day at noon local time, the app presents a selection of unsold rooms at steep discounts that travelers book through their smartphones. This approach is useful for travelers who need a place to stay, but also for hotels that want to fill up their empty inventory and reach an audience of travel-savvy consumers.
The app is now active in 150 destinations and 15 countries around the world, and the company plans to add 40 new destinations in September 2013 alone.
Today it launched in Prague, Budapest, and Vienna and added new destinations in established markets, including Seville, Venice, Cabo San Lucas, and Whistler.
HotelTonight’s popularity has inspired a wave of competitive products. Large online travel agents like Priceline and Expedia now offer last-minute hotel booking, as do smaller companies like Hipmunk, clones like Hotels Now, and HotelQuickly.
In an interview about HotelTonight’s funding earlier this month, COO Jared Simon said that these “clones” are only competitive on the surface.
“What incumbent players and clones don’t realize is that 90 percent of the code and effort is behind-the-scenes,” Simon said. “It takes a lot of work to build relationships with thousands of hotels, and we take great pride in creating great content around our hotels and providing a clean user experience. This is what differentiates us.”
With the new markets and features, HotelTonight aims to cement its foothold as the go-to service for last minute booking.
The HighRoller option makes top luxury suites available to HotelTonight users, at up to 50% off the regular rates. HighRoller is currently available in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and New York City, where people can book 1000+ square foot suites with private balconies, jacuzzis, and in one case, a baby grand piano.
HotelTonight closed a $45 million round of financing earlier this month and has raised $81 million to date. The company is based in San Francisco.