The Best Hotel Service
It's littler wonder Condé Nast Traveler gave the Singapore
Ritz-Carlton a double rosette for the luxury of its rooms
and for the quality of its service. Guests can sit in their bathtub,
a flute of Champagne at the ready, and enjoy a one-of-a-kind view
that takes in the sea or bay. Business travelers have a 24-hour
technology butler on call to help with those baffling IT problems,
and can summon up a fax machine or mobile phone if necessary. So
what else could a pampered guest want?
Quite a lot, according to the hotel concierge service such
as the absent-minded visitor who got as far as Changi airport before
realizing he had left his dentures in his room. A hotel employee
jumped into a cab, dashed out to the airport and handed over the
missing gnashers fortunately, the back ones, so there was
no public embarrassment virtually at the boarding gate. And
then there was the Hong Kong resident who arrived in the middle
of the night from Europe, en route to Australia, and went down with
a common craving for Chinese abroad: the need for a dish of tofu.
Room service didn't have any fresh supplies in stock so a staff
member was dispatched to a residential district where a coffee shop
was renowned for its beancurd. The grateful guest was delighted
and declared the local product every bit as good as the tofu back
Hong Kong a Search for Mr. Wong
Michael Wilson, the genial chief concierge at Hong Kong's Peninsula
hotel, was given a task that would stump most service-providers.
He gets a special prize for solving it. This is his story: "A U.S.
officer who served in Hong Kong as a GI during World War II returned
recently and asked me to find a man he had not seen since the war.
This man was called Mr. Wong. The telephone directory has page after
page of Wongs. Fortunately, the guest recalled that his Mr. Wong
once owned a tailor's shop above a bar. That gave us enough to go
on, and we tracked the mystery man down. It wouldn't have been right
to come up with the wrong Wong."
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