Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Lodging conference is here!

The opening evening of the Lodging Conference, held at the beautiful Biltmore resort in Phoenix, was a pleasant affair, with food and wine in abundance. Maybe it was the pleasant weather this evening, but I didn't hear a lot of gnashing of teeth about the economy. We'll see what they say in the actual panels and general sessions over the next couple of days, and determine how that holds up. I'm not holding my breath.

I'm not sure what it is, but I seem to have some bad luck with hotel rooms now that I'm actively working in the hotel industry. My first stay at a luxury property involved stolen artwork ... something I'll write about one of these days; I even have photos to prove it. Tonight, my issues (at a hotel near the Biltmore) were far smaller. First, one of my two fancy flatscreen television sets wouldn't work. Maybe it was the remote control ... a dead battery? On a whim, I looked behind the dresser to make sure that the TV was actually plugged in, and believe it or not, that was the problem. Fancy that.

I plugged it in and tried the remote again. It still didn't turn on, but it made a weird, loud whirring noise in back, which continued for about 20 minutes. At that point, I lost my patience and realized why the guest before me unplugged the darn thing. I did likewise.

Later, I took a shower after a quick jog, and found that the hot water wasn't more than lukewarm. These are both things that I probably could have gone either way on, but being the interested observer I now am, I figured I'd report the problem, to see what would happen. The young woman at the front desk was a little too casual when I approached ("What is it?" she asked me point-blank), but she promised to have someone look into both problems while I was at dinner.

I returned to my room and found a cute little box of two chocolates and a note from the engineer saying that he'd fixed both problems. The TV works now—well, almost, not sure if static is part of the HD experience. I haven't yet checked the hot water, but the note, which let me know that someone indeed responded to my issues, was a nice surprise. And hey, nothing cures a problem quite like chocolate does ...

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