is one of Loews’
An attentive staff has
always been a selling point for hotels, but as properties market to
smaller and smaller niches, individual workers’ expertise, no
matter how esoteric, is now being promoted as aggressively as a new
spa or free Internet access.
Fairmont Hotels and Resorts, while
hardly alone, has been particularly proactive in publicizing
employees’ knowledge in various fields, or hiring experts and
bestowing upon them curiously specialized titles.
This past October, for example, the
Fairmont Gold, a hotel-within-a-hotel at the Fairmont Washington,
D.C., debuted a “sleep concierge” who advises on what
sleep-inducing amenities or snacks (i.e., scented candles or
smoothies served with lavender cookies) should be included on a
sleep menu in each room.
At the Fairmont Kenauk at Le Chateau
Montebello in Quebec, one of the front desk attendants is a nature
guide who can lead groups on hikes focused on edible or medicinal
plants or speak about environmental issues.
Paul Muddiman, chef and master carver
at the signature restaurant at The Savoy, a Fairmont Hotel in
London, leads group meat-carving lessons.
Fairmont trumpets its “bath sommelier,”
“baked beans expert,” “chocolatiere” and “fish valet,” to name a
few, at various properties. Other hotels, meanwhile, herald their
“guacamoliere” (Loews Ventana Canyon Resort in Arizona), “soap
concierge” (The Tides Riviera Maya in Mexico) and “tequila
afficionado” (Las Ventanas al Para’so, a Rosewood Resort in Los
Makes you wonder how anyone ever sat on
the beach without the assistance of a “tanning butler”
(Ritz-Carlton, South Beach).