What is the elusive "it" factor that makes boutique and independent hotels stand out above the chain affiliates? Top hotel management firms may suggest costly ways in which this can be done, but what guests want is nothing more than to be cared for as a person and enjoy a genuine experience. We are sensorial beings and our experience is dependent upon each individual's perception. Translated, this means everything our guests hear, see, smell, touch and tastes creates an opinion which leaves an impression. A guest experience can be ruined if, despite all else being perfect, they encounter a foul odor, rough towels, a bad meal or a disrespectful employee. An untold number of details can go wrong and lead to a negative experience, but as an independent or boutique hotel, this is where we can rise head and shoulders above our branded and chain competitors. Take time to think about "the details" within your property that could make or break critical elements at each point of guest contact… or when there is no contact at all. The touch points are obvious; just walk through your pre-arrival to post departure process from end to end, beginning with the energy of your sales teams in the field and reservation agents on the phone, a smile and acknowledgement upon encounter, attention, service, creativity and quality of food and beverage provided in restaurants and bars, by housekeeping and by your staff at meetings and special events. Similarly, time spent in preparation before and after guest encounters set the stage for positive lasting impressions. Get the full story at Hospitality.Net