Editorial Board   Guest Author

Mr. Bajouk

Simon Bajouk

Concierge, Ritz-Carlton Montreal

Simon Bajouk is a Concierge at the Ritz-Carlton Montreal. Mr. Bajouk has been a practicing concierge for over six years, beginning his career at Montreal's Marriott Hotel. This early position gave Mr. Bajouk the confidence and abilities he needed to pursue his career and empowered him to assist others in reaching success. With an education in Hotel Management from the University of Quebec in Montreal and his early experience in the hospitality industry, Mr. Bajouk has keenly developed his leadership and customer-focused skills. Being a member of the International Association Les Clefs d'Or for five years now, he has built a reputation for professionalism, thoroughness and commitment to guest service. Over the years, Mr. Bajouk has shared his talents with some of the most prestigious hotels in Montreal, among them Le St-Sulpice, the Loews Hotel Vogue, Hotel Le St-James and most recently, the Ritz-Carlton Montreal. Mr. Bajouk sees each of his many memorable moments as learning opportunities and building blocks for the methodology he uses to deliver world-class service. As an accomplished concierge, he is proud of his accomplishments and looks forward to sharing them along the way. On this note, with the aim of sharing his experience in the field of hospitality, and more specifically in the role of caretaker, Mr. Bajouk and his colleague developed and implemented a customized customer service training program. He describes this program as teaching customer service and communication so that trainees can master the art of guest satisfaction. Mr. Bajouk has now taught several of these courses and among his many students counts the employees of Bombardier Inc. The company's involvement with the Ritz-Carlton Montreal over time has led him to being involved in several fundraising and charitable events for organizations such as the Terry Fox Foundation, the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada, and the Ste-Justine Hospital.

Mr. Bajouk can be contacted at 514-842-4210 or concierge@ritzmontreal.com

Coming up in September 2019...

Hotel Group Meetings: Uncommon Destinations

The last few years have been good to the Hotel Group Meetings industry and that trend is expected to continue into 2019. Planners are brimming with confidence due to an expanding economy and increased job creation, which typically results in a boost in corporate meetings. Given this promising outlook, planners are trying to outdo themselves to satisfy the high expectations of their clients. One notable trend is to integrate unusual settings into the meeting experience, hosting groups at local zoos, aquariums, museums, event centers, or other outdoor facilities. The goal is to embrace uncommon destinations, rather than a typical hotel conference room, so that meetings can be memorable, unique and stimulating. This is also part of another trend which is to support all things local - from hosting events at landmark city venues; to catering through local restaurants, food trucks and microbreweries; to hosting off-site excursions like agri-tours, athletic events or scenic 5k routes. However, though the setting might be spectacular, there are still some bedrock components that must be provided to ensure a successful meeting. Free, high-speed Wi-Fi is still one of the most requested services. Planners have to make sure that a comprehensive communication infrastructure is in place so clients can easily connect - and stay connected - to the network throughout the entire meeting experience. Also, technology tools can be used to streamline the booking, registration, and check-in process, and Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) materials can be utilized to ensure seamless access to conference events. There are also numerous software tools that encourage audience participation, as well as integrating polls, Q&A, surveys and games into speakers' presentations. The September Hotel Business Review will examine issues relevant to group meetings and will report on what some hotels are doing to promote this sector of their operations.