The Caterer
Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

Anthony Seddon-Holland – A Minute on the Clock

20 May 2010 by

After a 20-year career travelling the world as a butler, Anthony Seddon-Holland, 49, is now head butler of the newly opened five-star, 107-bedroom Cedar Court Grand Hotel & Spa in York. He comes from three generations of professional butlers and is heading up a team of five who are providing a 24-hour service to the hotel's 13 suites. He spoke to Janet Harmer

Caterer What will the butler service offer guests at the Cedar Court Grand?

Anthony Seddon-Holland We will provide a one-stop shop for guests, providing them with everything they need while staying at the hotel including check-in, unpacking and packing, laundry, and theatre tickets and transport if required.

Caterer Do many hotels in the UK offer a butler service?

AS-H It is offered by some of the five-star hotels in London, such as the Ritz, the Connaught and the Dorchester, but it is very unusual to find a butler service offered at a provincial hotel.

I think it will be widely used here in York as the city is a very popular destination on the tourist route of international travellers, many of whom are seeking a five-star experience.

Butlering is a quintessentially English tradition and has a huge appeal to foreign visitors. Guests who enjoy the Grand's butler service will talk about it in the same breath as describing their visit to York Minster or the Shambles.

Caterer Why did you become a butler?

AS-H I saw it as a means of moving into a more exclusive world and dealing with a better class of people, as well as travelling extensively.

Caterer Where have you worked as a butler?

AS-H All over the world - in every continent except Australia. I've supervised the day-to-day running of the primary European residence of a senior member of the Omani royal family, administered a London apartment for the CEO of Russia's largest bank and introduced the hotel butler concept to the Las Vegas strip, where I received one of my strangest requests - to ensure every element of the guest's suite was white.

Caterer What are the key attributes of a good butler?

AS-H Flexibility, the ability to communicate effectively, a sense of humour, and common sense. If a person has got these attributes, we can teach them everything else.

Caterer How easy is it to be able to recruit young people as butlers?

AS-H Here at the Grand we have been lucky enough to recruit three very good people from Yorkshire and one from Lancashire, but generally it is very difficult to employ British people as they are not very eager to do the job. In India, China and the Caribbean nations, young people are very keen to become butlers as they see it as an opportunity to earn a good salary and travel the world.

The Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email

Start the working day with The Caterer’s free breakfast briefing email

Sign Up and manage your preferences below

Check mark icon
Thank you

You have successfully signed up for the Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email and will hear from us soon!

Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.

close

Ad Blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an adblocker and – although we support freedom of choice – we would like to ask you to enable ads on our site. They are an important revenue source which supports free access of our website's content, especially during the COVID-19 crisis.

trade tracker pixel tracking