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  • The Storyteller

Making every effort for my gazpacho: Laval the superstar

This had happened quite a while back in Mauritius, at Constance Le Prince Maurice (now Constance Prince Maurice).

I had gone to the beach bar for some light lunch and had this craving for a cool gazpacho soup on that hot day. As I didn't see it in the menu, I asked the employee, Laval, if that dish was available. He excused himself to check with the kitchen and came back promptly to inform me of the following:

  • That they don't have this dish available. (Fair enough, I totally understand).

  • However........ (I'm liking this already!) they could prepare it for the following day (wow!) or other days of my stay if I give them one day's notice. (This is incredible!)

At this juncture, I was already super impressed with the hospitality extended. But that's not the end of it...

So I thanked him profusely and said I would do just that. In the meanwhile, I ordered another dish everything went smoothly.

The following day around late morning, I met Laval on my way back to the room. We greeted each other like we had known each other for a while and he greeted me by name. He said he had tried calling me to inform that the chef has prepared all the ingredients ready for Gazpacho soup and would be ready if I would like to have it today.

Another wow.....the effort they go through to meet the casual request! I am beyond appreciative and touched. I am humbled and in awe.

Laval then added, "You can have it in any of our outlets and just let the staff know." How more personalised can this be? This is so very thoughtful. I thanked and complimented him and kitchen team for all that they have done.

So come around 1pm, I decided to head to the all-day dining outlet - which was quite far from the beach bar at the other end of the resort. At the entrance, a new trainee whom I have never met during my stay greeted me rather shyly with not much eye contact. As he sat me down and presented the drink list and food menu, he said,

"Ms. (name), we have the gazpacho soup ready for you if you would like to order it."

A-M-A-Z-I-N-G. Amazing not because I the guest got what I wanted. Amazing because it so demonstrates the strong communication across the different outlets, and between the kitchen and service team. We are not talking about a tiny property with one or two restaurants, but one that's spread over fairly large grounds with several kitchens.

In a LQA audit, this would be hands-down a Key Emotion 5 - where the guest feels special and indulged.

As I sipped and savoured every spoonful of my wonderful soup, I saw Laval walk from across the beach clearing some used glasses and plates on a large tray propped on his shoulder. From a distance, I saw him smiling and greeting at guests as he trodded along, looking as happy as can be. Then, he spotted me - we must have been at least 50 metres away from each other - (this showed his sense of alertness too) and adjusted his tray such that he could wave at me. I waved back and gave him a thumbs up sign and he did the same and nodded with a large grin. I love that - no words needed - but we both understood.

For the remaining of my stay, I look at each and every single F&B person there as if they were my hero. Laval, of course, is and will always be my superhero for this gazpacho request!

Service Bank: Deposit of 10 hearts - the maximum possible!

Reflective thoughts: What has this incident demonstrated about the person and the team? List down all the positive attributes and discuss how was this shown. Do you see that in your team?

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