We conduct retail training sessions in Wollongong and Nowra which necessitates an overnight stay in a motel. I was fortunate to discover what has now become one of my favourite places in Wollongong. Usually – at 8 pm, I am not in the mood for a heavy dinner, but one night, after a particularly grueling day without a decent meal I visited the restaurant attached to the Motel. What an experience!
Some examples of extreme service are now clouded in history and it is uncertain as to whether it ever happened: South Western airlines famously picked up a customer that was running on the runway to make his ride, and Nordstrom’s exchanging a used tyre that a customer brought back, are just two such examples.
But this one is real: I was served by Angie at Downtown Motel, in Crown Street; and boy is this girl amazing!
I arrived soon after two other gentlemen, and watched as she greeted one (about 80 years old) with a hearty kiss, then she greeted the other gentlemen with a kiss (about 60 years old)who turns out to be the son of the other gentleman. The welcome was so warm and engaging, I had to ask if she knew them.
They were not related at all but they both were regular customers. I noted that she did not offer or serve the younger gentleman a drink, and established later that, without having to ask, she knew that he was on standby, waiting for a patient to deliver a baby; but was equally determined to keep the regular appointment with his dad. They had been visiting there for years. The older gentleman’s wife had passed away a few years ago but they kept returning to the restaurant.
I noticed that the older gentleman had order crumbed lamb chops. It was not on the menu, and I asked Angie later how she did that. She said when they book; the chef especially shops for lamb cutlets and prepares it according to his wife’s recipe. She asked if there was anything special I would like that wasn’t on the menu.
She remembered to offer me a Sauvignon Blanc (one month later, after only one vist) but that wasn’t what blew me away! On this visit- exactly one month later, on a Tuesday – the two gentlemen were both there again and of course I was going to watch everything with a hawk eye. The gyneacologist turns out to be a diabetic. He often comes straight from the hospital to honour his commitment to his dad, and occasionally forgets to eat and then needs his insulin injection – and ANGIE KEEPS A SPARE INSULIN INJECTION IN THE FRIDGE! Properly sealed, marked, identified in a special holder inside the fridge at the bar counter – supplied by the doctor of course. And Angie even knows how to administer it.
Now THAT is extreme service.
This woman understands people, and she cares for people. She truly understands the meaning of the word ‘hospitality’, and her customers regularly come back for that “fix of love and giving”.
And bloody oath, Downtown Motel is where I will be staying next time I am in town. Wouldn’t you?
Posted by Moonyeen
Note: Angie does not know that I am writing this, and probably does not read blogs.