Service at hotels more important than free amenities

Personalised attention to service is key to loyalty in post-recession era

Luxury hotels are realising that courtesy, respect and kindness are more important now, in the post-recession era, than giveaways such as high-quality lotion and soap in the bathroom. Hotel executives gathered for the Reuters Global Luxury and Fashion Summit agreed that expert service that understands guests’ personal preferences was the key to their satisfaction, especially in Europe and the US. As rates rise, this is the least that guests expect from luxury hotels.
Employees are being trained to recognise customers to be able to extend a warm, personal greeting. “Guests want to be recognized,” explained one executive. Meanwhile, many international chains, including Hyatt, Marriott and Starwood, are creating their own boutique-style brands.
Technology may help to create a bridge of personal attention, for example via Apple Inc’s iPad tablets. But the executives at the summit would not explain how their individual companies’ ongoing research into the matter could make this happen.
[pictured: Luxury room at a Starwood property in London]

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