...as a Porter
I'm one of a team of porters who cover the front door and public areas from 8am until late and work for the Head Concierge. During my shift I'll probably be the first person that an arriving guest will meet at Prestonfield and so it is up to me to make their arrival both smooth and welcoming.
In our distinctive all-black kilts we are the first part of the unique Prestonfield experience - the kilt is often a talking-point! Escorting guests to reception, we try to help guests feel at home and also let them know we are here to handle any request that might make their stay more special.
Like all of the team, we love a challenging request, whether it's horse riding in Holyrood's Royal Park, a hot air balloon for an impromptu proposal, after hours shopping in one of the city's exclusive stores or a trip in a sought after vintage car? After requests like these, theatre tickets, an airport collection or replacing a forgotten pair of cufflinks are easy!
I need to be familiar with who's checking in, who we have arriving for lunch and what might be happening with meetings, events or private dining throughout the hotel. I also need to keep myself aware of what is happening in Edinburgh, the hottest show tickets, most interesting exhibitions or discovering unusual shopping experiences for guests.
Tasks vary throughout the day. I might be valet parking a guest's car, collecting their luggage or escorting a guest to reception. There are jobs too that help create Prestonfield's unique style: log baskets to be filled, complimentary Champagne delivered to guest's rooms, candles to light and lots and lots of brass to keep gleaming!
Our central spot in the marble-floored hall, between the front door and reception, ensures we are busy all day - directing guests to a log fire for afternoon tea, arranging messages or helping out the waiters and bar staff when they are busy too.
We go to great lengths to accomplish the seemingly impossible, so I hope in time to work towards being awarded the Golden Keys, the international standard of excellence in guest service.
As the first and last person to meet our guests, I always hope that I've helped the hotel make a good impression.