Winner 2019: Bankside hotel, London
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The 161-bedroom Bankside hotel launched in October 2018 as a member of Marriott International's soft Autograph collection, with the aim of becoming a hub for creatives.
Despite it having been open for only a year, our judges were so impressed by the front of house team that they have been named this year's Front of House Team of the Year. What really stood out to the judges were the examples of staff going above and beyond to help the hotel's guests. In one instance night manager Diana Boakyewaa saw a guest at Southwark station whose shoe had fallen onto the track. She gave the guest her own shoes, returning to the hotel to pick up a spare pair. Head ambassador Alice Elodie Vibert, spent a day off giving a couple a personalised tour around the local area, and the whole team has helped elderly neighbours in an adjacent building to dine in the ArtYard, even escorting them home.
On a day-to-day level, the team is encouraged to find ways to enhance guests' stays and meet their requirements before being asked. Examples include anticipating items needed for children of late arrivals, asking a guest if they would like their dog to be walked while they relaxed in the bar, sourcing back-pain gel for a regular guest and putting a passport left in a safe in a taxi to the airport before the guest realised it was missing.
Front of house manager Soyful Alam and head ambassador Vibert also ensure their colleagues know everything that is happening within the hotel and the South Bank area through weekly email bulletins, so they can share details with guests. This is indicative of an approach that saw 83% of the team rate communication as ‘amazing' in the last staff survey, with the remaining 17% describing it as ‘very good'.
The results of the approach are also apparent in audits and guest reviews. The hotel scored 4.14 out of five in a Marriott experiential audit, with the front of house team singled out for its friendly, personalised service and knowledge of the artistic elements of the building.
Meanwhile the year-to-date score for check-in experience is 86.9%, with departure experience at an impressive 89.5%.
WHAT THE JUDGES SAID
"A stellar performance for this hotel. Really hitting the ground running against some stiff competition. The Bankside hotel has firmly placed itself into the London hotel scene."
Alistair Sandall, head of professional development, Institute of Hospitality
"So many wonderful examples of the team exceeding guest expectations in such a short space of time since its opening. The team seems to have a genuine care for guests, team members, furry friends and anyone just walking past the door."
Sally Humphrey, resort reservations supervisor, the Grove
- Bankside hotel London
- The Beaumont London
- Charlotte Street hotel London
- Kimpton Fitzroy London
- St Ermin's hotel London
- 2018 Hotel Football, Manchester
- 2017 the Milestone hotel, London
- 2016 the Gleneagles hotel, Perthshire
- 2015 Charlotte Street hotel, London
- 2014 Macdonald Windsor hotel
- 2013 Radisson Blu Hotel, Edinburgh
- 2012 Flemings Mayfair Hotel
- 2011 the Cavendish Hotel, London
- 2010 Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons, Oxfordshire
- 2009 Malmaison Leeds
- 2008 Jurys Inn Manchester
- 2007 Rudding Park, Harrogate
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