I just read Scott’s latest Starbucks tribute, coincidentally fresh back from my most recent hop into the rental car to find some decent coffee. Now in Phoenix, we’ve switched to an AAA 5-Diamond hotel, are in a room that normally goes for $380 per night (we got a ‘sweet deal’ ) and we can’t get a well brewed cup of joe. We don’t even need specialty espresso drinks, just regular good-tasting black coffee. It’s not in our room, and it’s not in their breakfast restaurant.
Newsflash to all hoteliers: I will pay your obscene prices for a cup of coffee when it is good and I needn’t go through a lot of extra trouble to get it.
I’m not divulging the name of the hotel because we did get a good deal in other ways and I don’t want to appear ungrateful, but also because I travel a lot and this happens all the time. Unfortunately this hotel is the norm and not the exception. It has become my habit to case out the surrounding area of a hotel to find the nearest coffee purveyor because it’s sadly so predictable. As I commented on Scott’s post:
I wish hoteliers everywhere would understand how important coffee — good coffee — is to people: We’ve hit the road nearly every morning to find a Starbucks, The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, or another coffee-focused purveyor to find coffee that tastes decent. Luckily there are a lot of them to choose from, but I keep thinking about the lost opportunities at the places we’re at.
It also causes you to wonder what else they simply don’t get.
True, I’m a businesswoman who makes her living in coaching others to manage well and provide exceptional service at the same time. However I am still your customer, and I do believe that most consumers have the same expectations I do. We all need pretty simple things, however we want them done well. Otherwise, you shouldn’t bother at all: not having it is better than offering it poorly.
It’s become pretty standard now for most hotels (including this one) to offer you a complimentary coffee and tea service in-room — one with poor quality coffee that only serves to illustrate how badly they do it, and annoy you into realizing how much you want it right.
The only place I’ve ever taken advantage of it and been satisfied is at the Four Season’s Resort Hualalai, because there, in addition to the coffee-maker they provide a coffee grinder and jar of whole bean Kona Coffee you can grind yourself as strong as you want. Yes, it costs them a little bit more, however what a great return they get on their investment: I recommend them to everyone.
Just because of the coffee?
Because just like the coffee, they get most everything else right too.