When I think back to the hotels I’ve stayed in, what I remember most clearly years later is not anything that drew me to the hotel in the first place—not the location or the pool or the free Wi-Fi—but, rather, the people I met once there. Usually my strongest memory is of a single person who went out of his or her way to make my trip better.
Has anyone provided you with exceptional service—at a hotel, a restaurant, or an attraction anywhere in the world—within the past 12 months? We’re giving you the chance to publicly recognize that person for going the extra mile.
When I think back to a stay at the Ritz-Carlton, Washington D.C., for instance, what I remember most vividly is the front-desk attendant who noticed I had a cold and sent a surprise pot of tea with lemon and honey to my room. What I remember from my first hotel stay in Beijing was the concierge who, when I asked where I could rent a bicycle, literally walked me down the street to the rental shop to make sure I got a safe bike at a good price.
I especially remember those hotel staffers who have provided local intel and access that transformed my trip. There was the breakfast waiter at the Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai who had worked at the hotel for 31 years and shared stories about the hotel and tips for what to do in the neighborhood. There was the English-speaking driver on call at Le Vendome Beirut who got me inside ancient Phoenician cities and Roman ruins that were off-limits to tourists. There was the manager at Nukubati Island Resort in Fiji who got me invited to a local tribal wedding on the island.
As we know, first-rate hospitality doesn’t have to cost five-star prices; exceptional service can be found at budget-friendly hotels too. There was the housekeeper at the SpringHill Suites in Ewing, New Jersey, who found the beloved sweater I’d inadvertently left behind in my room and FedExed it to me. There was the front-desk clerk at the Courtyard by Marriott in Binghamton, New York, who told me I could have gotten a special weekend rate that included breakfast and threw me four free coupons for the breakfast buffet.
Who’s provided you with exceptional service—at a hotel, a restaurant, or an attraction anywhere in the world—within the past 12 months? Take the time to nominate that person in our inaugural Exceptional Service Awards. Submit your story here by October 24. We want to hear who’s made a trip of yours unforgettable.