One of the advantages of having a wife in the hotel business is the occasional weekend away.
Janet works with Logical Venue Solutions and last weekend we were guests of the Vale Hotel, Golf and Spa Resort in Wales. We had a great weekend in a very fine hotel and, chatting with Ben the manager and his sales team Lou and Linda, I had a real nostalgia for the hotel industry. Momentarily, I was one with those innocent fools who decide it would be really cool to open their own hotel. And then reality bit and I remembered years tumbling out of bed – disturbing my four hours allocation of sleep – because of an armed robbery in reception or a suspected terrorist resident (actually a poor Irishman who had upset a cabbie); innumerable fire alarms; finding the basement flooded one morning and the maintenance man struggling to close a mains valve whilst shouting “Joe!, Joe! I’ve lost my teeth!” Guests collapsing into their pate from alcohol and their soup from a heart-attack. Ah, happy days.
I take my hat off to Ben and his ilk. And have re-established my contempt for the idiot vanity that leads the inexperienced into the industry. No dear, it’s not just like having friends to stay.