Tell us a little about yourself and your business
I’m Paul Walsh, head concierge at Amba Hotel Marble Arch where I have been working for the over 14 years. We have 692 bedrooms and 13 meeting rooms and are classed as a four-star hotel. Situated on the corner of Oxford Street we are perfectly located for shopping, sightseeing and visiting the finest restaurants in London. We host the Golden Keys meetings at the hotel every month.
What precautionary measures is your business taking to guard the safety and welfare of visitors?
On arrival staff and guests will be required to take temperature tests. Face masks will be worn by all staff. We have limited the seating in public areas, every other room will be vacant and there will be limited food and beverage options. Sanitiser will be used on all luggage handles and shared computers.
Can we expect anything different or innovative to enhance the customer experience?
We are awaiting delivery of our lobby robots, who will be able to answer all questions about our amenities and also provide some local knowledge in a variety of languages. They will be able to take you to your room or meeting room!
Can you tell us one lesson that you have learnt during the shutdown?
Don’t take anything for granted! We never thought in our wildest dreams that you could shut down London, international travel, air traffic and all hotels. But we did!
Do you think we will go back to what we thought was normal and if so when?
I don’t think we will see any sense ‘normal’ again in our industry. It’s taken us years to build up to the level we were achieving on a regular basis and I don’t think we’ll ever get back to the consistently high occupancies and high average room rates we once had. People will be a little more hesitant to book into busy large hotels and travel excessively. Hopefully this is not the case but it definitely doesn’t look good for the near future.