The iconic, Art Deco Burgh Island Hotel has appointed a new Head Concierge Simon James, who brings a wealth of experience in the hospitality industry, spanning four decades, with previous experience including working at one of the UK’s most luxurious hotels.
Simon’s passion and dedication has earned him one of the hospitality industry’s highest accolades, membership of the elite international association of concierges, Les Clefs d’Or. With only around 3,000 members globally, working in over 80 countries and 530 destinations, it is a mark of distinction and only awarded to the true concierge professionals dedicated to delivering the highest level of service to their guests and hotels.
Simon began his career as a luggage porter at the Grosvenor Park Hotel and his career trajectory since then has been varied, but he was always drawn back to the hospitality sector. He has taken on roles across the retail sector and social work, along with the management of a leading boutique hotel in Wales and, subsequently, of several bars across Spain and Malta. Prior to joining Burgh Island Hotel, Simon was Head Concierge/Guest Services Manager at the Raithwaite Sandsend luxury estate near Whitby.
Simon’s impressive journey through the world of hospitality has now brought him to the Burgh Island Hotel in Devon. This prestigious establishment dates back to 1929 when noted film maker and theatre producer Archie Nettlefold converted his holiday home into a hotel, and boasts a plethora of famous past guests, including Noel Coward, the Prince of Wales and Winston Churchill. Agatha Christie also famously resided here when penning her novels And Then There Were None and Evil Under the Sun.
Simon James, Head Concierge at Burgh Island Hotel, said: “I am thrilled and honoured to join the team here at the Burgh Island Hotel. Working at an establishment with so much history and heritage is a joy and meeting the steady stream of new and regular guests keeps me motivated to provide the best service possible. As a lover of art and painting myself as well as studying Hindu Jain and Buddhist teachings, the opportunity to work in such a culturally and artistically significant hotel is one I cherish.”
Since joining Burgh, Simon has already made a lasting impression on both staff and guests. One recent guest who was suffering from a serious illness sent him a handwritten letter thanking him for making her experience at the hotel an unforgettable one, ‘taking away [her] worry’ and helping her feel ‘like a lady.’
Giles Fuchs, Owner of Burgh Island Hotel, said: “We are delighted to welcome Simon into the Burgh Island family. His illustrious career and reputation are the result of his professional excellence and passion for his role. He is a notable addition to the team at Burgh and will considerably strengthen our guest services at a time when we are undertaking the largest renovation in over a 100 years to provide new standards of contemporary luxury.”
Penny Brown, Managing Director at Burgh Island Hotel, said: “It is brilliant to have Simon onboard at Burgh Island. I can say from past experience working with him at the Raithwaite Sandsend luxury estate that he is attentive, motivated and extremely professional. In his short time at the hotel, he has already made an impact on both guests and staff. His upbeat attitude and willingness to solve any issue make it a pleasure to work alongside him.”
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