Hospitality Built In

During my trip around Southeast-Asia, I was able to visit the country of Philippines, a small country composed of three major islands, and an archipelago of smaller islands. During my short visit, I was able to stay in a small inn in an older part of the country that showed its historic Spanish roots. It was off season and at that time decidedly out of fashion, not to mention the old establishment has already fallen into shabbiness and eventual demolition. But even with the few guests they had, the staff made sure that all of our needs and requests were met, though not in a way you might expect the staff of an inn would come upon it. Many hospitality businesses don’t pay enough attention when it comes to cleaning their places, in order to offer the best experience the carpets and upholstery needs to be cleaned regularly.

It has been some years since my visit, but I have come to know that the culture of the Philippine people includes an extremely hospitable nature. While the inn staff was no professionals trained to the level of butlers I have grown accustomed to during my European tour, they treated me with the warmth that of a family.

One interesting moment was when I had an unwelcome visitor in my room, a cockroach, while it would be something that would destroy and establishment here back home; it was to be expected at such an old place in the tropics. If that happened here back home. What I got there was the woman from the front desk carrying a broom and their lobby boy with a can of bug spray. Surprisingly enough it was quite an enjoyable turn of events, as we were like friends chasing a single bug around, with me pointing, one spraying, and another swatting around a broom. We never did get that bug, but they offered me another freshly made room as an apology.

My stay was short, but though the services of that particular inn were lacking, they showed something that I found rare in most establishments I have visited. It became apparent to me that the people of that country truly had heart when it came to serving others, and though they might have been lacking in training, they truly had hospitality built in.