If you’re like most people checking in at a hotel, you head straight for the front desk (or bypass it with a mobile app), b-line to your room – where you maybe raid the mini-bar, have a shower or take a quick nap – and head right back out. And, if you’re like most guests, you’re likely missing out on one of the biggest benefits of staying in a hotel: the concierge.
Want some concierge trivia? Concierges pre-date the existence of hotels. In the Middle Ages, the concierge was the holder of the palace keys, charged with managing access to even the most important of rooms. As the trusted advisor to the King, the concierge oversaw the coordination of the household and performed special tasks at the request of the court.
It wouldn’t be until three centuries later, when hotels had become mainstream in western cities, that the concierge role would transition from royal palace to hotel lobby. Today, concierge are the face of the hotel, acting as the liaison between guests and the front office. More importantly, it is their duty to ensure that guests have everything they need during their stay, from arranging a dinner reservation at the most sought-after restaurant in town to mapping out their itinerary for a day of shopping and sightseeing.
But with Yelp, Google Maps and OpenTable just a tap away, most guests forget about the concierge’s expertise or don’t realize the value concierges can provide. Because we would hate to see this valuable resource to go waste, we went ahead and asked some of the members of Concierge Anonymous, NYC’s underground guest services community, to weigh in on what types of requests their guests can and cannot ask their concierge.
Note: All of these are real Concierges, working in some of the top hotels all over the city. However, in order to protect their identities, we had to make slight alterations to their names.