I was on business and stayed in the Atlanta Marriott Alpharetta. I was warmly greeted by several staff upon arrival and at the check-in desk. The staff were all smiling and they appeared to really enjoy their jobs which was evident in everything that they did. I saw an American Girl display in the lobby and was told they have a meeting there every Saturday for moms and their children. Kids and moms dress up like their dolls and walk on a runway and a stage that sounded like a lot of fun for both parents and kids. The fact that this meeting repeated there every weekend told me that there was a lot of local people that found this property and service to their liking.
I was shown where the sundry shop was and told that the bar restaurant was open that night and that the food was excellent. I have heard this many times before and asked a few follow up questions. The staff readily shared some of their favorite meals and menu items that all sounded great. Room check-in was a breeze as they quickly found my reservation and confirmed that I would be receiving Marriott reward points for my stay.
The room was very clean as to be expected and had a few excellent touches for the business traveler. It had a slide out computer table under the desk that was a perfect height for me. The wake up calls were easily completed and the bathroom was huge. The bed was more than comfortable and I slept better there than in my own bed.
I did eat in the lounge and found the staff there to all be happy and provided excellent service. The bartender Eric has been there 13 years, Lanair the waiter has been there over 10 years and knew the menu and the craft beers very well. Catarina was very friendly when she brought me my meal and she also has been there over 10 years.
The next morning Valerie was my waitress for breakfast and she had been there for "many years" and "loves her job". So why have these staff in an industry that is high on turnover all been there for this long? Simply said they all love what they are doing, they love where they work and it shows by their smiling faces and dedication to their duties. Valerie mentioned that they could grow by training on other jobs and said that Marriott was the best place she had ever worked in over 25 years in the industry.
That is exactly what makes for a great hotel and the "Marriott Difference".