A miracle called Hospitality
A Miracle Called Hospitality
“To invite people to dine with us is to make ourselves responsible for their well-being for as long as they are under our roofs.” ANTHELME BRILLAT-SAVARÍN
‘‘Culture relates to objects and is a phenomenon of the world; entertainment relates to people and is a phenomenon of life’’ HANNAH ARENDT
“The friendly and generous reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers.” This is the definition of hospitality as per the Oxford English Dictionary. But in reality, hospitality is much more than reception alone. Hospitality has everything to do with living and happiness. It encompasses pleasure, surprise and gratitude. It is connected to the ability to enjoy and the sensitivity to appreciate that which is truly exquisite. When it is truly present, you can feel it everywhere. An anemone that has recently opened its petals, a plush and carefully folded towel, a freshly prepared cocktail, the smell of a room the draws us in… It is in the waiter that delicately tends to the menu, the smiling receptionist that requests your details upon arrival at a hotel or the professional that checks your luggage before an airport check-in.
But most of the time, the surprises come where you least expect them. It is all in the detail; the real important factor in luxury. The Japanese call it ‘Omotenashi’, a term that became fashionable a few years ago when Japan put forward its candidacy for the 2020 Olympics. It means an art that goes beyond simple customer service, and is related to extreme courtesy and the ability to uphold structure and harmony. It is something so ingrained in Japanese culture that you can feel it, even when it cannot be seen. Some people relate this to the tea ceremony, which involves both etiquette and education and relates to both respect and the importance of putting the collective before the individual. It is an art designed to indulge the guest, the person who has been invited. The difference is in the detail: an air steward who smiles and treats each traveller like an individual, who on delivering the coffee spoons, wraps each one with a carefully placed serviette; it is in the shining crystal glasses placed beside delicate flowers, standing straight inside the tiny glass vases upon the table.
It is something silent, but that seeps into all the senses and the soul… It is a lesson for the Alberta La Grup team that is learnt gradually, day by day; the way each client likes things to be done, services that are carried out with great care, an atmosphere filled with the delightful scent of an aromatic candle, the curtains left slightly open in a particular way so that the light and air can pass through. One client from the United States brought their housekeeper with them to train our team under the watchful eye of our butler. Alberta La Grup always learns how to do things perfectly in each and every household.
“Hospitality: a word that may seem insignificant, but that reaches the soul of those who receive it and even more so of those who give it…” is the reflexion of our CEO, Lourdes Carbó, who reveals that the most profound philosophy of Alberta La Grup is trust, expertise, pleasure, timeliness and 24 hour attention. There answer is never ‘no’. There are no half-measures. Anything is possible, and always delivered with a smile, a show of excellence and, of course, with perfection.