Catering to the room

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For those of you that serve breakfast in a dining setting, what do you do when only some of the party comes to breakfast and states the other wants breakfast delivered?   or What if they offer to bring it up?   If you have this as a paid option when booking, do you allow them to add it on the whim?

This issue this morning had me thinking on this again. 

 

Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

If the guest offers to bring a tray up I hand them a tray. But we don't do room service because we have no tables in the room to sit a tray on.

We had a family of three take their breakfast to their room. Annoyed the living daylights out of me. As, of course, they wanted all the fixin's that are on the tables...salt, pepper, sugar, jams, etc. Silverware. Coffee. Juice. All of it.

Oops, didn't check the date on this OP.

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I have no idea where the thread was on this topic, but last winter we added the deck/private patio to the love shack, and a few of you have asked to see photos.  Here tis in a collage. It seems the only way to motivate me is to have people checking in and I race for the camera.

LOVE SHACK photo collage here.

The giant hickory tree is dropping pecans like crazy. The second they are swept up there are 5 dozen more! So these guests may NOT want to eat breakfast outside tomorrow.

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Joey Camb's picture
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we had this last weekend - lady was a bit hung over and boyfriend asked if he could take her's up - she had come down and ordered but then I think the smell of the food made her go a bit green - I allowed this as I work on the principle of if she is going to be sick I want her as near to a toilet as is possible! wasn't a lot to ask and she brought all the  plates down when they checked out - the main reason we don't do room service is we are only 2 people on a morning and if one is upstairs then the one downstairs has to cook, take orders and potentially deal with check out's as well - for 22 people - its just not practical, don't mind if they just want toast in their room - easy peasy

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Tom
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10/11/2009

We don't serve in the room unless the guest's disability warrants.  As for the spouse him/herself, they occasionally bring a plate away to the absent half.  I am not thrilled about this, but we collect the debris later when we fluff.  And people bring lots of their own snacks anyway. 

We have a guest lounge with fridge and microwave for dinner leftovers and that has helped reduce room mess. 

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10/07/2008

First course today for the Red Hot Lovers Breakfast (we deliver to the room)

Click here

gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

Nice!! Wish I had that this morning. I had to ask twice to get a half cup of coffee this morning. I took my Shinnston travel mug to lunch and waylaid a server to get coffee in it - was not going to settle for thier 2-sip size cups!! Tonight is a reception to talk to our Legislators - interesting concept since the music will be so loud one my be speaking directly into the ear to be heard. Really do not want to be that close to any of them! Home tomorrow afternoon.

Breakfast Diva's picture
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That's beautiful!

Silverspoon's picture
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10/16/2011

This used to happen to us all the time...not any more.  Here is what we did.  

First, we have a free standing cottage and two guest suites in the main house.  A full breakfast is served each morning in the dining room and that is what our web site says.  We do not want to deliver breakfast to anyone during our busy summer season but in the slow seasons, we don't mind.  So we added an option that can only be added on when we are slow.  Here's how we put it:

"If you would like to receive your gourmet breakfast delivered to your private suite or cottage for the entire duration of your reservation, add $25/night to this rate."

That effectively limits the take out crowd.  We do have folks who stay off season and request this option, especially in the winter in the cottage.  If we like them we don't charge them, especially if they are our only guests...then I don't even have to get dressed for breakfast service!

Additionally we have a note in our welcome book on the breakfast fast page that kindly requests that all breakfast foods remain in the dining room.  This usually works but of course there is always the errant muffin that gets taken as a mid-morning snack.  

We reserve the option of changing this policy at will....and we occasionally do, but not often.  

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gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

I do not mind them taking coffee or tea up to the room, but I REALLY do not want people eating in the rooms. They can leave enough stains without me providing the method. The configurations of my rooms do not allow a table - too many windows, doors, mantles.

Proud Texan's picture
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gillumhouse wrote:

I do not mind them taking coffee or tea up to the room, but I REALLY do not want people eating in the rooms. They can leave enough stains without me providing the method. The configurations of my rooms do not allow a table - too many windows, doors, mantles.

Amen sister!   We discourage eating in the rooms.  Unless they have specifically requested a continental breakfast when they made their reservation,  then if they don't come to the main house to eat....then they don't eat.

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Proud Texan wrote:

gillumhouse wrote:

I do not mind them taking coffee or tea up to the room, but I REALLY do not want people eating in the rooms. They can leave enough stains without me providing the method. The configurations of my rooms do not allow a table - too many windows, doors, mantles.

Amen sister!   We discourage eating in the rooms.  Unless they have specifically requested a continental breakfast when they made their reservation,  then if they don't come to the main house to eat....then they don't eat.

So what if ONE comes to breakfast but wants to take their other 1/2 breakfast - or has that not happened to you? 

Madeleine's picture
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copperhead wrote:

Proud Texan wrote:

gillumhouse wrote:

I do not mind them taking coffee or tea up to the room, but I REALLY do not want people eating in the rooms. They can leave enough stains without me providing the method. The configurations of my rooms do not allow a table - too many windows, doors, mantles.

Amen sister!   We discourage eating in the rooms.  Unless they have specifically requested a continental breakfast when they made their reservation,  then if they don't come to the main house to eat....then they don't eat.

So what if ONE comes to breakfast but wants to take their other 1/2 breakfast - or has that not happened to you? 

That has happened here. Usually it is because the other person overindulged the previous night and all they really want is some toast and coffee. I think we've maybe had a full breakfast go up to the room once. It's not something we want to do. Too much of a mess. And no time to get everything together when we're busy.

gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

No, that has not happened. They may take coffee or tea and muffins, but no one has ever asked to take breakfast to the room. I have one guest who loves taking her breakfast on the porch - THAT is OK. I set up a folding table and set it the way I do in the dining room - but not in the room.

When they come in with carry-out I tell them I PREFER they use the dining room - and yes, I HAVE done that.

Breakfast Diva's picture
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gillumhouse wrote:

I do not mind them taking coffee or tea up to the room, but I REALLY do not want people eating in the rooms. They can leave enough stains without me providing the method. The configurations of my rooms do not allow a table - too many windows, doors, mantles.

You're not alone...I know many innkeepers who forbid food in the guest rooms. It's hard to patrol though.

gillumhouse's picture
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05/22/2008

I do not forbid food in the rooms for just that reason - how would I know? However, if they order out when the food arrives I tell them I will set the table for them. And I do. Rather do dishes than deal grease spots from pizza or whatever.

Breakfast Diva's picture
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I don't quite qualify, because we deliver to all rooms, but if I did a breakfast service and someone approached me at the last minute, I would probably let them take it up themselves, and if they were more than a 1 nighter, ask them if they would like it delivered tomorrow. If I charged for the service, I wouldn't let them do it 2 days in a row because they're just trying to be cheap.

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05/22/2008

We offered it to our guests for free. We loved just delivering it to their rooms and not having to Chat away the morning Smiling  That said we only had 3 rooms. We never had all 3 ask for it at once. I just prepared the tray a bit early and husband delivered it to the door. Then we plated breakfast for guests who came to the table.

Arks's picture
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05/22/2010

Hey, we're staying in your house so you must be our slave for the day. Right?

I wouldn't mind putting breakfast on a tray for the roommate to carry to the room (and back to the dining room when done), but would tell them if I deliver it, that's an add-on feature that incurs additional charge.

I've stayed at B&Bs where a person at breakfast filled a plate and carried it to the room for their spouse.

On the other hand, maybe they are good tippers!

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Arkansawyer wrote:

Hey, we're staying in your house so you must be our slave for the day. Right?

I wouldn't mind putting breakfast on a tray for the roommate to carry to the room (and back to the dining room when done), but would tell them if I deliver it, that's an add-on feature that incurs additional charge.

I've stayed at B&Bs where a person at breakfast filled a plate and carried it to the room for their spouse.

On the other hand, maybe they are good tippers!

Another innkeeper conundrum. 

  1. Maybe they have a migraine. or for those in the UK me-graine. Smiling
  2. Maybe they just want to eat in their room.
  3. Maybe they are selfish, and self centered and think everyone needs to bow down to them.
  4. Maybe they waited until they didn't have to ask, so you would be caught off guard and just load up a plate or tray for them.
  5. Maybe they are used to their family bringing food into the lair.
  6. Maybe they have a 3 to 4 hour beauty regiment and nibble as they go.
  7. Maybe they are avoiding the extra fee for breakfast delivery by subtly asking to just carry it upstairs themselves.

(all of these have happened here, so I am using real life examples)

Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

If I had it as a paid option whoever did the requesting would be told: you can bring it up for free or I can deliver it for a fee. If we were really busy I would tell them when I could deliver it. Usually after 9:30.

We don't have that as an option so if someone 'can't' make it for brekkie I will send up toast and jam with whoever is sober enough to make their way downstairs to ask. But no deliveries by us.

I think it's kind of rude in a B&B that doesn't offer that to 'call down' and ask for breakfast to be 'delivered'.

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