Room 77, which enables you to eyeball the view from your hotel room, branched out to three more cities and is taking a two-pronged approach to sourcing room layouts.
The company needs room plans to work out its hotel-room views and has been collecting them from users submitting photos of floor plans on the back of hotel room doors via its free iPhone app or when they email them to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The other way Room 77 scales up hotel room information -- and not just regarding imagery -- is when hotels cooperate and verify their data.
For example, more than 100 Starwood properties, working with the chain, have verified their room information.
So, here's what the sleuthing from travelers looks like. The first two images are from the Radisson Plaza Warwick and Crowne Plaza Philadelphia Downtown hotels, respectively, in Philadelphia, which was recently added to the Room 77 roster, as were New Orleans and Vancouver, Canada.
And, the following image is from the Crowne Plaza Philadelphia Downtown:
And, Room 77 has even put founder and chairman Brad Gerstner to work, drawing floor plans, such as in this rendering of the Four Seasons Palo Alto:
The Room 77 database now houses 480,000 hotel rooms in 21 cities, but not all of the data have been verified by the hotels.
And, 480,000 hotel rooms obviously are a fraction of the 3-star and above hotel-room inventory that Room 77 hopes to capture.
Can the company do it with user photo submissions and will big hotel brands other than Starwood join the effort?
These are only some of the questions that loom for 2-month-old Room 77.
The company is currently in discussions with hotels about a pilot of room-specific bookings, but no concrete plans have been revealed.