Tiago Santos, Director of Guest Services at the historic Georgetown Inn, reveals the answer
When he started in the hospitality industry more than a decade ago, Tiago Santos had no idea how fulfilling it would be. Today, he uses his ability to think creatively on his feet and his natural affinity for working with people to ensure that the guests of this iconic hotel not only enjoy their stay, but return again and again. Take a look:
Where did you grow up?
As a child we moved around a lot so I’d say I grew up pretty much everywhere. But much of my time was spent in Arlington and in and around Washington DC.
When did you get started in your industry?
I started back in 2004. I heard that there was a hotel in Arlington that was hiring and I was immediately interested. At the time I was working in retail and wasn’t enjoying the fact that I never knew what my schedule would be from week to week.
What makes the Georgetown Inn special and unique?
Truly, I think it’s the history and the location of this hotel that makes it so special. The area here has so much to offer. The Georgetown Inn is a boutique-style hotel, small and intimate, and our staff really caters to the guests. We deliver the kind of service that everyone expects from a hotel of this level.
What do you love most about what you do?
I would say that the best part of what I do is talking with the guests. We really have the nicest people staying with us. It’s also a great feeling when we have guests coming back after having stayed here 30 or 40 years ago. They remember their experience and return because it was so wonderful, and that’s really amazing.
What’s the most important thing you learned in your journey in this industry?
Particularly as the Guests Services Director, it’s necessary to be open minded and to think outside the box because this job entails being able to juggle so many different things at once. There are the things that come at you on daily basis and no day is ever the same, so you need to be able to come up with different solutions right on the spot. And of course, it’s important to be able to talk to the guests, talk with staff.
Do you have a mantra or philosophy that you live and work by?
I think listening is the key to being successful. You really just need to be willing to listen to people; in my case, the guests and the staff. Because I think in general people are just looking for a sympathetic ear, and to know that someone cares about what they want or need.
Why did you choose Boca Terry when you were looking for robes for your business?
Well, of course we looked at many different vendors. Boca Terry has high-quality products and is on par with what we need to provide to our guests who expect a certain level of luxury.
How has your experience been working with Boca Terry and how have their products been received by your clients/guests?
The experience has been great, our representative Rosemarie is awesome, she is great to work with. All I need to do is reach out to her every few months and it’s easy to reorder. Their customer service is excellent. As far as what our guests think, we have guests who purchase them … and we do notice that the [Boca Terry] robes are used often.
What do you think the Boca Terry Robes add to your business/service level?
I think it makes it a more luxurious experience. We also use their slippers in our larger rooms which adds even more value and elevates the experience even higher.
How does offering luxurious Boca Terry robes differentiate your company from others?
Offering Boca Terry robes puts us on par with a lot of [luxury] properties in this area. We always make sure we follow the trend of what comparable properties in the area are providing for their guests. And because The Georgetown Inn is an upscale, boutique property, guests expect a certain level of luxury.