How To Make Friends With Your Hotel Concierge: The BFF That Keeps On Giving

Leah Bourne

par 236 screen hi res1 How To Make Friends With Your Hotel Concierge: The BFF That Keeps On GivingKarleen Roy has worked for Sony Music Entertainment’s Legacy Records, for Ne-Yo, and served as Senior Executive Assistant to Sean “Diddy” Combs at Bad Boy Entertainment before striking out on her own and founding The Vanity Group where she works with high profile clients like Zac Posen and Kobe Bryant anticipating the kind of demands that only A-listers have. Need to throw a party on a yacht in Cannes in less than 24 hours, for instance? Roy has been there, done that and is here to share her wit and wisdom with The Vivant.
Well, I’ve been around the world—twice—and in my travels I’ve found one thing to be particularly helpful, and that is making good friends with hotel concierges or hotel VIP sales offices. Getting familiar with these key people will make your hotel stays unforgettable. Traveling should be easy after all, right? By setting yourself apart from the other hotel guests, you may be able to score a few extra perks during your stay. And remember, being nice will always get you far! Here are a few ways to make sure you end up with the concierge as your new BFF and the big perks you can expect.
1. Get the proper intro. For starters, make sure you get the proper introduction to the concierge specialist. Have your travel agent or assistant (duh!) alert the hotel concierge of your arrival and be introduced. Let them know in advance your travel dates, how you like your room prepared, and the type of activities you prefer (casual dinners versus dinners with a ‘scene’). Get their emails and cell numbers if you can. That way the concierge can start to prep for your arrival in advance and get you the best reservations and seats in the city. You can even have them print your itinerary and have it nicely waiting for you inside your room when you arrive.
2. Small hotels win out. I often find the best hotel concierges work at luxury boutique and smaller, five-star properties. If you’re staying at a massive hotel the size of a Disneyland resort, how can you possible expect one-on-one service? Well you can’t! With a million and one people staying at a large property like that the staff often forget about your wants and requests. Stick to hotels such as The Setai in Miami or the Four Seasons Hotel George V in Paris for that individual service you require after dishing out the big bucks for a hotel stay.
3. The house car, one of the best perks around. A big plus of making friends with a concierge is access to the “house car.” Most luxury properties have a house car available for your use to go within a short radius of the hotel. And who doesn’t want to ride in style in a Mercedes 550 or Phantom to dinner or a meeting? Let your concierge know of your plans in advance and maybe they’ll let the house car driver take you outside of the specified radius so that you’re able to arrive to a fabulous dinner with friends in style! Just remember to tip the driver well.
4. No need to pack. Partied too much the night before and now you have no time to make your flight to Teterboro in time? The concierge can arrange a butler to pack your belongings for you, take them downstairs and even load them into your car service while you finish pulling yourself together. If you’re too lazy to check your bags or are running out of time before that 60-minute bag check-in limit, just leave a note and have the concierge ship it to your home.
5. Remember to say thanks. At the end of your trip, make sure to stay in touch with your concierge and send them a handwritten thank you note or a nice flower arrangement for all of their hard work. You never know, this may even lead to a free room upgrade for your next trip. And remember, great, longstanding relationships are key. As the old saying goes, it’s not what you know, but who you know.