Hotel are classified according to their function or location and for the quality of service provided. Guesthouses are small establishments which provide basic hotel facilities at a low price and are often family-run.
Hotels are awarded a star grading. The minimum is one star and maximum usually five.
*= basic furniture and facilities, such as hot and cold water and heated rooms. Linen is changed once a week. Reception service is available only 12 hours out of 24.
**= a slightly higher standard of comfort and more extensive facilities. There will be a TV lounge and a television may be available in the bedroom. Linen is changed twice a week. There are refreshment facilities and a lift. Reception service is available for 12 hours.
***= private bathroom with shower or bathtub in every room. Most 3-star hotel also have a television set, internet connection and direct telephone line in the room. They usually offer a lounge area, bar, restaurant with buffet, breakfast and menu choice for lunch and dinner. The staff often wear uniform. Reception service is available for at last 16 hours and receptionists speak at least one foreign language. In hotels with *** stars or more, linen is usually changed daily although for ecology reasons, it is becoming increasingly common for the hotel management to invite guests to indicate each day which towels they want changed.
****= numerous high quality services and facilities including: a good restaurant, a snack bar open all day, full room service, a porter for luggage and private car parking for at least 50% of rooms. Rooms have individually controlled heating and air conditioning, mini-bar, cable/satellite TV and hairdryer. Receptionists speak two foreign languages.
*****= luxury accommodation with several bars, restaurants, lounges, shops, sports facilities, fitness centre, solarium, 24 hour laundry service, private car parking, safe in every room. Reception service is available 24 hours and receptionists speak three foreign languages.
BURJ AL ARAB
On a man-made island, stands the iconic six-star Burj Al Arab, the most luxurious hotel in the world. Towering 27 storeys high. Have the Presidential Suites and two Royal Suites that extend over the 25th floor.
All suites feature floor to ceiling windows. This all-suite hotel reflects the very finest that the world has to offer. You can be assured of the ultimate in personal service throughout your stay.
B&B IN THE UK
In general sense it means that the guest has a room and that breakfast is included in the hotel rate.
INNS IN THE UK
In Britain an inn is a pub where people can stay the night. Their rates are reasonable. The daily room rate usually not only includes breakfast but also dinner served in the public bar or the ground floor. The bedrooms are on the first and second floors. The proprietor of an inn or pub is referred to as the landlord.
B&B IN ITALY
Although B&B is a kind of accommodation which is relatively new in Italy, it’s fast developing all over the country. There may be one or more rooms to let in the same private house or flat. Some of the houses are in the centre of art cities, other more out-of-the-way and quiet.
The owner of B&B facilities are generally affiliated to one of the many B&B organizations that are rapidly spreading in the various regions. All B&B networks have a website and can be contacted on-line. By telephone and fax or through travel agencies.
ACCOMODATION IN THE USA
The star grade classification does not apply to hotels in the US. Because of the great distances, motels along highways or on the outskirts of towns and cities are very common.
The most important categories of American hotels are:
• DELUXE these are expensive luxury hotels offering the highest standard of services and facilities
• SUPERIOR FIRST CLASS these are above-average hotels. Rooms and common areas are tastefully furnished and very comfortable.
• SUPERIOR TOURIST CLASS these are hotels with well-kept, functional accommodation, but they may be lacking in some features.
• TOURIST CLASS this is a low-cost type of accommodation, with only basic service. Not recommended for fussy clients.
A different choice of beds from European ones. They often have queen beds that are larger than normal ones and king beds that are very large. Prices are applied per room. If more than one person occupies the room, a small sum is changed for each additional guest.
A motel is a form of accommodation designed for motorists travelling. Motels differ from hotels in two main ways, they are located along roads and not in cities and the rooms open directly onto the car park and not onto an interior hall. Are typically constructed as a series of ground floor rooms, a small reception and a small dining area.
BOOKING A HOTEL
Usually consult a brochure or the internet. When choosing your hotel you will take into consideration various factors. These include the hotel’s star grade, hotel room and facilities, meals available and distance from the sea or the city centre.
Some hotels charge a supplement for single occupancy of a double or twin room. A twin room has two single beds, while a double room has a double bed.
The price of a hotel room not only depends on the type of room the guest requires but also on how many meals are provided.
The all-inclusive tariff includes all meals, snacks and drinks.
• FULL BOARD includes services, breakfast, lunch and dinner.
• HALF BOARD includes services, breakfast and dinner.
• B&B includes services, but the only meal provided is breakfast.
English breakfast is different of Continental breakfast.
When you have found you hotel you make a booking, which can also be called a reservation. Hotel reservations are generally made by phone, letter, fax, e-mail or directly from the website.
The smaller the hotel the more varied the work. Problems which can be managerial, structural or problems related to the guests. In contrast, in a larger establishment it is likely that the receptionist will be responsible only for arrivals. In general he/she should be ready and willing to help the guest in any way he/she can. The receptionist has to crate a good impression.
• Checking the reservation
• Checking the length of stay
• Asking to fill in and sign the registration form
• Asking for identity card or passport
• Checking the method of payment
• Giving room number and key
• Calling a porter
Voucher which shows that the tourist has already paid the travel agent or tour operator part or all of the cost of staying at the hotel. The tourist gives the hotel receptionist the voucher. The hotel is reimbursed by the travel agency when it sends the agency the original copy of the voucher.
DEALING WITH COMPLAINTS AND PROBLEMS
When a client comes to reception to present a problem or make a complaint it’s very important that the receptionist stays calm and polite at all times.
You must never start arguing or behaving in a way similar to the unreasonable guest. If you find that you are losing your calm because of unreasonable behavior or if you are worried or feel that you can’t cope, don’t hesitate to call the manager or another member of staff. The annoyed client always likes to hear an apology.
When a person returns the hotel key and pays the bill
• Asking for the guest’s name
• Asking for the key
• Making the bill
• Asking how the guest wants to pay
• Giving the bill to the guest
• Answering any enquiries
• Ensuring payment is made
CONFERENCES AND FUNCTIONS
The place where a conference or a function is held is called a venue. A function can be a party of any type. The venue for this kind of event is often a hotel. Of course the hotel must have suitable facilities for conferences and/or functions in the form of very big rooms which can cater for large groups of people and staff need to be specially trained for this particular kind of work. As these facilities take up a lot of space. Hotels need to use them regularly to make them economically viable and many now specialize in this kind of activity. The facilities are commonly offered in packages. In the case of a conference, meals are usually provided, cool drinking, relax, golf or tennis and personalized menus and/or suitable surroundings for photograph.
PREPARING THE CONFERENCE FACILITIES FOR USE
People attending a conference are called delegates. First you must arrange the room according to the layout required by the organizers. These are the main layouts requested for conferences.
• THEATRE STYLE looks like theatre. The delegates sit in rows. When all the delegates are sitting together theatre style we call this a plenary.
• BOARDROOM STYLE is for smaller groups. They sit round a large table to discuss something.
• U-SHAPE is very similar and less intensive and encourages eye contact.
• CLASSROOM STYLE where tables and chairs are arranged as in a classroom. This is ideal when the delegates have to write a lot or must consult material or use equipment while they are participating.
• HERRING-BONE STYLE is the less formal. Sometimes the event is not so much to discuss business or learn new things but to promote a new product or facilitate future business.
• COCKTAIL STYLE sit around tables where they can talk, discuss or listen as the moment requires. Food can also be served.