5
Oct
2014

Putting on the Ritz & raising the bar!

After a less than stellar end to our time in Berlin, it was a disillusioned and weary travelling party who arrived in Singapore for the last leg of our holiday. Our ten-year-old declared we should just go home and skip Singapore, and he never wanted to stay in a hotel again because they weren’t safe; which is somewhat rate limiting for future travels!  I have to admit, we considered it.

We didn’t want to end what was a great trip otherwise on a sour note, so we decided to continue with the original plans, and boy, were we glad we did.

From the time we arrived at the Ritz Carlton Millenia we experienced a level of service and hospitality that is beyond anything I’ve ever seen; and we’ve seen quite a bit in our travels!

Every aspect of the service was personalised; our names were embroidered on the pillows in our room and there were even pictures of us printed and framed to ensure we truly felt it was our home away from home. It was exactly what we needed to restore our faith and wash away all of the negative energy that the previous chain had created and our ten-year-old went from saying he was never staying in a hotel again to saying he was never leaving this one!

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From there, it was just a continued escalation as the team competed to find new ways to surprise and delight. Each time we returned to our suite after a day out, we opened the door with baited breath, keen to see what awaited.  And we were never disappointed.

The kids had towel art every day, which reached levels of creativity that I could never have imagined, and Chef Terence constructed absolute works of art with chocolate, including a recreation of our entire family!

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All of this was overseen by Assistant Club Manager, Karen, who would have to be one of the most creative people I have ever met. Her energy and enthusiasm knew no bounds; she even created a special pharmacy lounge for us one afternoon, with signature cocktails for all.

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One of the mission statements of the Ritz Carlton that scrolls through on the television screens in the rooms says ‘let us not exceed your expectations but your dreams’ and it is clear that this is a deeply embedded culture. Senior managers pop by regularly for a chat to see how your stay is going, and are clearly delighted to hear of the lengths that their team are going to to ensure that a truly memorable  experience is being delivered. Team members have freedom to unleash their creativity to deliver real service personalisation, which in turn, delivers an incredible level of engagement and pride in their work.

Each and every staff member introduced themselves personally and it was clear that they are all incredibly proud of the role they play in making sure that guests have a wonderful stay. We had heard Ritz Carlton used as an example of a fantastic engagement culture by Gallup (who we have also done quite a lot of work with over time), but I have to say we could never have imagined just how phenomenally this would translate into customer experience.

All in all, not only an absolutely wonderful end to our trip, but one which has left us thinking that while our Epic team already have great capacity to surprise and delight, the team at the Ritz Carlton have triggered ideas and inspiration about how we can also take this to the next level..