Where is Switzerland’s friendliest hotel? Here’s your chance to help decide. Your ratings and reviews of Swiss hotels on a host of online platforms will all go towards deciding who will win the first ‘Friendliest Hotel in Switzerland’ Award. This isn’t about star ratings, number of TV channels, choice of tea at breakfast or even a lift to all floors. This is about hospitality and service.
2013 is the 150th anniversary of modern tourism in Switzerland, so it’s the perfect year for Switzerland Tourism to launch this award. Not just to recognise those hotels that have mastered the whole ‘be nice to the guests’ attitude but to encourage those who haven’t. And we have all stayed in some of those, I’m sure (and not only in Switzerland). Places where the staff went to the Fawlty Towers School of Hotel Management. Places where sorry seems to be the hardest word. Places that give Swiss hotels a bad name.
And even all those hotels in the middle that are far from terrible but not quite wonderful. Hotels where staff are efficient, polite, competent and about as friendly as robot. It’s such a shame to stay in what would otherwise be a lovely hotel but to leave thinking that it would have been nice to see someone smile. So let’s reward those hotels that do go the extra (s)mile and make the customer feel like a king (or queen).
Here’s how it works. Every hotel in Switzerland is automatically qualified to take part, no matter if it is rated officially or not. Until 31 March all the reviews posted at over 100 rating sites like Tripadvisor or Qype and hotel booking sites like Booking.com or Hotels.com will be compiled and analysed by an independent agency. Hotels will be judged in one of four categories:
- Luxury hotels (5 stars)
- City hotels (1 to 4 stars)
- Small hotels (up to 40 rooms, outside the cities)
- Large hotels (over 40 rooms, outside the cities)
All you have to do is go to your favourite rating or booking site and leave a review for a Swiss hotel that you have stayed in. Links to a range of review portals can be found at myswitzerland.com. Only hotels that achieve a minimum of 30 reviews will be eligible, in order to stop undue weighting from a small number of reviews.
To start things off, here are my nominations for the Friendliest Hotel in Switzerland in three of the four categories (I have yet to stay in any Luxury Swiss Hotel so have to leave that one blank!):
- City hotel: Edelweiss in Geneva
- Small Hotel: Rigi Kulm on top of Rigi
- Large hotel: Grandhotel Giessbach beside Lake Brienz
So which ones would you nominate? Which hotels in Switzerland have had service with a smile and friendliness that made an impression? Winners will be announced at the end of May.
Go on. Make a difference. Post a review.