‘Best experiences have more hidden layers than visible to the common eye' - Ashish
Palace Hotel, Sun City - South Africa, looks like any upscale resort hotel. Every detail immaculately planned. So are the many restaurants and bars.
The drinks menu was interesting, but more interesting was the bartender at the pool bar. Soon I had a 'special' drink made for me, off the menu, based purely on the likes I shared with him. A few drinks later, I did let the bar staff at the pool know my appreciation for making something special just for me.
That evening, at another hotel restaurant for dinner, as I settled down, I saw in action the hidden layer of great customer experience. My conversation with the waiter sounded something like this:
Waiter: Welcome to the Tusk Bar. I hear you enjoyed the special drink that was made for you at the pool earlier today. Would you like another one of them?
Me: I did enjoy that drink a lot. But how do you know? It is not even on the menu.
Waiter: Well if you want another, our bartender will be happy to make another one especially for you. We also have similar tasting drinks if you want to venture into something new?
Me: Bring it on!
Do you see the level of customer intimacy that one layer created? Linking my preference using my room number, communicating between bars, passing information accurately to another team, all a hallmark of a great customer experience hidden layer.
Dig deeper, and you realize the layers go deeper. I was not limited to a menu. I was given a choice to continue enjoying something I liked, or indulge in new flavors. The offer was personalized to me without the bar trying to get mileage from other patrons.
Delivering simple things exceptionally is the mark of a great customer-centric organization.