I like nice hotels. Hotels with something special. And like almost everyone, I appreciate remarkeable experiences. I would rather talk about an interesting experience with someone than who is leading on American Idol or the books I am reading. That's probably why I keep trying boutique hotels.
I just stayed at the Park Hyatt in Sydney which sits right on the Harbor in the shadow of the Harbor Bridge. The famed Opera House sweeps up from the opposite pier. All in all a remarkeable setting.
The hotel is one of the best I have stayed in. (No, I do not stay in super luxury hotels)
The service was great. Everyone was extremely nice. The amenities were first rate. Still I long for a remarkeable, personal touch. The Kimpton hotels give out goldfish as temporary pets. That's remarkeable. So, what could the beautiful Park Hyatt Sydney do to move from exceptional to remarkeable?
The Idea Already:
1. Create an employee idea list and give every guest a custom list. You know the employee book reviews at bookstores like Politics and Prose? What if all of the employees of the hotel listed out the 5 things they like most about Sydney? Sandwich shops, views, best local coffee, local artists. Now what if you solicit the same lists from a varied collection of native Sydney natives? Of course it all exists online and the content is tagged.
Three or four questions at check-in drive a custom list that can be printed out and handed to each guest (or better yet, added to my custom hotel Web portal which still doesn't seem to exist).
The hotel could solicit list ideas from guests. Soon, we all belong to a niche community of folks who love Sydney and want to connect with personal, authentic experiences.
Who knows, it might even draw staff into owning the experience even more than they do now.
2. Give each guest a Great Sandy Desert or Gibson Desert. Like the goldfish, these would be personal bowls of real desert sand from one of the interior deserts of Australia kind of like the Zen garden concept (you know - minature rake, the rocks). There are 6-7 desert regions within the interior of the driest continent in teh world. Guests could choose which one to have in their room for their stay. As I flew from Sydney to Singapore, we crossed the continent. I was blown away by how vast and foreign it all seemed. At times I felt I could have been looking down on Mars. I believe many people have a romantic yearning to feel the outback. Why not let them in the luxury of their hotel room. Okay, giving everyone a Koala bear might top this but I think there would be some problems with that.
As per Rohit's new book and the Website promoting it - The Personality Project - it takes an extra commitment to go beyond great into personal and remarkeable. I think it's worth it.