Shhh... Please don't tell anyone, but F&B Directors are quickly becoming our favourite people in the world.
I'm not quite sure what it is. Maybe it's because most of them started out on the frontlines, in the kitchen, they are now absolutely top when it comes to making quick decisions. There is no better training: you have to think on your feet, always six steps ahead, and pull in extra help at the right time.
We've been very lucky to work with several Exec-Chefs turned F&B Directors who clearly use the same principles in their current roles. They have a budget to achieve, they are obsessed with optimising, and they proactively look for tools to help them achieve what they need. When they see something they like, they test it. They get the job done, no faffing around.
Their biggest problem is that hotel guests are quite reluctant to dine at the hotel - they would rather go out. So all these lovely restaurants and bars and are often shockingly underutilised and their teams' talents go somewhat wasted.
At the same time, there is a whole huge and untapped demographic of people who would be very excited at the prospect of having a dining experience at the hotel: local residents. It's unlikely they will ever stay at the hotel, but they would sure love to visit for Sunday Brunch with friends, treat their wife to a spectacular anniversary dinner, or ring in the New Year at your gala.
That's where we come in - we open the doors to the hotel to local residents. We make it very easy for them to buy all these experiences online, very often as gifts. When they buy online, not only do they buy more, but they also do it all on their own. Meaning your team is free to do what they do best, and not having to spend hours on the phone taking bookings and folding gift vouchers.
Most often creating an online shop starts with an inspired F&B Director. Most often other departments (like Spa) follow and add the experiences they wanted to sell later. But if it wasn't for F&B, none of it would be possible. (Chef's) Hat off to you!