As society evolves so does its people. A socio-cultural progression changes the very fabric and temperament of a certain place. This kind of change brings with it a new thought process that is far more refined and not as dogmatic. An open mind brings with it the ability to accept a new formula or a format that was earlier unheard or unacceptable. There was a time when the hospitality industry in India saw a hand ful of women working across departments as the profession was not considered appropriate for the fairer sex. Though there is a long way to go, the Indian hospitality industry has surely taken a few steps forward. Today women are making a mark across the board as general managers as well as concierges, which was a rather unheard of profession in India till recent times.
They are men and women who are the ‘go to’ people during crisis and celebrations. From parties to panic situations, they give you the much needed assurance that ‘all will be well’ and looked after. They are your 3 am friend in the hotel who work wonders for the brand and its goodwill. The concierge plays a crucial role in bringing back the guests. They are also the ambassadors of the city in which they work. My recent trip to the JW Marriott Hotel in Chandigarh, gave me a first hand experience of what a concierge can do to augment the brand and the city along with it. The concierge was like a mini encyclopaedia on the place, its people and culture.
Our cover story this issue gives the Golden Keys their rightful due by detailing the evolution of the profession and specialisation in the industry. The Golden Key is truly of high value and one has to earn it to proudly flaunt it. Only a select few get the honour to wear it; currently there are 109 Golden Key members in India. In 2011 India became an independent chapter of Les Clefs d’Or – Society for Golden Key Concierges, which is a free and individual society affiliated with Union Internationale des Concierges d’Hotels (UICH).