Who is a Concierge?
There have been countless definitions of who a concierge is. The following lists are a few and simple explanations we hope will enlighten our clients on the general meaning and basic duties of a concierge.
Definition and History
- The word “concierge” evolves from the French word, comte Des cierges which means “keeper of the candler,” a term that referred to the servant who attended to the whims of visiting noblemen at medieval castles. Eventually, the name “concierge” came to stand for keeper of the keys at public buildings, especially hotels. There is even a famous prison in Paris that is called The Conciergerie, in honor of the warden who kept the keys and assigned cells to the inmates. By Katharine C. Giovanni, CCS
- 2. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
A concierge (French pronunciation: [kɔ̃sjɛʁʒ]) is an employee of an apartment building, hotel or office building who serves guests with duties similar to those of a butler. The position can also be maintained by a security officer over the graveyard shift. A similar position, known as the portero, exists in Spanish-speaking regions. The term “concierge” evolved from the French Comte Des Cierges, The Keeper of the Candles, who tended to visiting nobles in castles of the medieval era. In medieval times, the concierge was an officer of the King who was charged with executing justice, with the help of his bailiffs. Later on in the 18th Century, The Concierge was a high official of the kingdom, appointed by the king to maintain order and oversee the police and prisoner records.
In 19th century and early 20th century apartment buildings, particularly in Paris, the concierge often had a small apartment on the ground floor, called la loge, and was able to monitor all comings and goings. However, such settings are now extremely rare; most concierges in small or middle-sized buildings have been replaced by the part-time services of door-staff. Some larger apartment buildings or groups of buildings retain the use of a concierge. The concierge may, for instance, keep the mail of absented dwellers; be entrusted with the apartment keys to deal with emergencies when residents are absent, provide information to residents and guests, provide access control, enforce rules, and act as a go-between for residents and management when management is not on-site.
- It’s a customer service-oriented profession maintained usually by multilingual hotel staff members
Who handle luggage and mail, makes reservations, and arranges tours”.
- It is simply another word for personal assistant.
- You can now find concierge everywhere … in hospitals, malls, corporations, apartment buildings, office buildings, airports, colleges, associations, churches and on and on and on. You could sum up the state of the concierge industry in two words … ‘extraordinary growth’.
Why do we need Concierge Services?
The modern society pressurizes us to do balancing acts everyday whether we like it or not. In fact we try to cram a 36 hour day into 24 hours without taking time out for ourselves. This can adversely affect our health, family life, business, etc.
A Concierge will help ease your tension by taking care of the time consuming errands so you can concentrate on the bigger picture.
Some Concierge Duties:
- Searches for tickets to concerts and special events
- Transportation Services
- Business Referral Service
- Restaurant Recommendations and Reservations
- Dry cleaning pick-up/delivery
- Grocery shopping
- Pet services
- Senior care
- Modified house sitting
- Travel and Vacation Planning
- Meeting and Event Planning
- Home beautification
This is only a few of the many services a concierge can offer. The sky is the limit here!
Concierge service is also a terrific new work/life benefit as corporations begin to offer these services to their employees and clients. Real estate management companies are setting up lobby concierge and are offering them to their apartment and office buildings and neighborhoods. Concierges are being added to hospitals, universities, shopping malls, airports and more. Travel Agencies and Meeting Planners are all adding them to their list of services. Certainly it’s the wave of the future.
In hotels, a concierge assists guests with various tasks like making restaurant reservations, arranging for spa services, recommending night life hot spots, booking transportation (limousines, airplanes, boats, etc.), procurement of tickets to special events and assisting with various travel arrangements and tours of local attractions.
Other types of concierge services
In hospitals, concierge services are becoming increasingly available. A hospital concierge provides similar services to that of a hotel concierge, but serves patients and employees as well. This helps hospital employees who work long shifts, and helps to provide work-life balance.
Today there are numerous independent personal concierge companies. Many of these companies provide errand services and information services for their members. Services include informational requests, setting dinner reservations, making telephone calls, researching travel arrangements and more. Typically, concierge companies will bill on an hourly rate, and depending upon the type of task, fees can fluctuate drastically.
Other companies bill a flat monthly fee based upon the number of requests a member is allowed to place each month. Over the last 10 years in the United Kingdom, concierge has become a key marketing/loyalty tool in the banking sector and offered as a benefit on luxury credit cards. Concierges also entertain their clients.