More than the bed linen thread counts, gleaming bathroom tiles, and penthouse suites sizes, what most guests remember when staying at luxury hotels are the unique service experience they get.
Private Butlers, Private Pools, Chauffers, Personal Shoppers – these are just some perks that luxury hotels employ and offer to create memorable experiences for their guests. The menu of ideas to pamper and overwhelm guests can get endless, and they also get grander (and perhaps more outrageous) through the years.
Do Fragrance Butlers, Tea Sommelier, and Pet Psychics sound familiar? All these are perks offered by actual luxury hotels.
As much fun as it is to discuss the elaborate features that luxury hotels offer, we shall go back to basics in this article as I list down very straightforward perks and luxury hotel amenities found in some luxury hotels that truly make a guest’s visit memorable.
Some of these are so simple, it is surprising how they give a maximum effect.
1. Chauffer Check-In:
While most luxury hotels already offer private airport transfers and pick ups, some resorts go the extra mile by beginning the check-in process in the car.
This is perfect for hotels which are located quite far from the airport and who have guests arriving late at night (or around midnight).
I personally experienced this last year visiting a newly-opened luxury resort in Bali. My flight arrived midnight, and apart from the resort’s chauffer, a front desk staff was also there to check me in. It was such a relief when we reached the hotel, to be able to just walk straight to the room at close to 1AM and sleep.
2. Mobile Phones:
The Shangri-la Maldives provides its guests with mobile phones for a good number of reasons. First, the resort is sprawling and huge that most guests need resort buggies to shuttle them from point A to B ( room to the breakfast restaurant, for example).
Sometimes, guests also need to be picked up from certain locations and it is easier for them to just get the phone and dial for a buggy, wherever in the resort they are. Call it the Uber for resort buggy.
Second, the mobile phone also has the number of the guest’s personal butler stored so the butler literally, is just a phone call away wherever the guest may be.
Third, the numbers of the hotel restaurants, spa and other amenities are also stored in the mobile so should a guest, for example, in the middle of enjoying his/her breakfast suddenly think of booking a spa treatment, they can do so very simply.
3. Breakfast and Meals Anytime, Anywhere:
It’s great when hotels allow guests to finish breakfast late (around the 2-digit clock mark) but you know what’s even better? When hotel breakfasts don’t have a timeframe at all!
The Kayumanis Resort in Jimbaran, Bali offers such an amenity. Breakfast anytime during the day (or night), and it can also be delivered to your villa at no extra cost. This on top of complimentary afternoon tea everyday (which again, can be served in the comforts of your own villa).
I hardly saw other guests in the public areas of the resort so I was surprised to discover that the resort was actually at 100% capacity. Now I know where everyone was- enjoying their stay without needing to get out of their villas.
4. Complimentary City Pick Up/ Drop Off Service:
This service is offered mostly by resorts or hotels that are located pretty far away from the city central, but there are some centrally-located hotels that also offer the service.
Some hotels do a van / shuttle that departs from the hotel at certain times and vice versa, but the more luxe properties and brands offer private services for this.
5. Luggage Forwarding Service:
Hotel groups such as Starwood Hotels offer a luggage forwarding service to guests, whether they are incoming or departing.
This includes a packing or unpacking service for guests, and definitely saves guests a lot of time and worries of making sure their things arrive safely.
While the forwarding service is not complimentary as it involves a third party freight company, most hotels do not charge a fee on top of the shipping/ forwarding service.
This amenity is great (and sometimes essential) for hotels that are located in shopping capitals.
6. Custom-Stocked Fridge/ Mini- Bar:
Several luxury hotels now offer guests the option to advise (pre check-in), if they want certain items on their fridge or mini-bar. While almost all luxury hotels now have private chefs to cater to every dietary requirements, it is still a bonus to have guests’ personal preferences stocked in the mini bar and fridge.
This is a great option if hotels have a lot of guests that travel from overseas or even inter-state and have to fly, therefore making it hard for them to carry their usual dietary items.
This saves guests with special dietary requirements having to make a dash to the local grocery store. Or for creature comfort guests who just want to feel at home, this is an offer that will be appreciated.
7. Complimentary Movie Library:
Complimentary movie channels are common in hotels these days. It’s also common for some hotels to have a DVD Library where guests can choose individual DVD’s from. But it’s rare to come across one that actually offers an entire Digital Movie Library in the comforts of the guests own rooms.
This is the case for NIYAMA Maldives, a resort whose theme is mixing nature with city comforts. The expansive movie library can prove useful as guests can enjoy the overwater bungalow during the day and also indulge in movie marathons in the evenings.
What Makes These Amenities Work?
One common denominator that these facilities and services have is that they simple, and not over the top. We’re not talking about million-dollar investments but just mere tweaks and smaller additions that make guests lives easier.
Most hotels research and get to know an idea of their guests’ existing lifestyle and try to re-create the same comforts in their properties. The main key factor that gets guests’ satisfaction level up is if they feel comfortable and at home while staying at the hotel. Once the small worries are set aside ( meal requirements, transportation.
luggage, etc), then guests are more receptible to the overall offerings of the hotel, which then includes the big kahuna amenities such as personal shopper, fragrance butlers, etc.
Often, it is the small things that matter the most and create a lasting effect on guests’ experience. And the list above are just some of the numerous ‘medium output, maximum effect’ amenities that hotels employ to ensure a satisfying stay.
What would you like to see offered in your favourite hotels for a more perfect stay? Any other simple amenities you’ve encountered that enhanced your experience? We’d love to know in the comments!