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Concierge Chat

Hamson Tsui, Four Seasons hotel Hong Kong

Chief Concierge at Four Seasons Hotel Hong Kong, Hamson Tsui loves to show his guests the ‘real’ Hong Kong, local style

 

 

 

 

CityLife:  How did you start your career?

Hamson:  It all began in 1991 when I joined the Conrad Hotel as a baggage porter. Later I received an invitation from Louis Baleros (currently Chief Concierge at the InterContinental) asking me to work for him at the old Ritz Carlton in Central. I was promoted to concierge clerk after two years. Six months before the old Ritz Carlton closed I moved to Four Seasons and have been here ever since.

 

CL: What made you decide to pursue the concierge life?

Hamson: I was fortunate to receive guidance from experienced concierges like Louis, seeing how they handled guest enquiries.  I think it’s a career of continuous learning, as the world is changing every minute. You have to adjust to those changes and reflect that in your service. I’ve had so many interesting and useful encounters, which stay with me until now. I try to learn from them, because you never know when they’ll come in handy.

 

CL: Any new trends that visitors are asking for these days?

Hamson: Nowadays visitors want to experience Hong Kong the way locals do. For an authentic dining experience, we have a special culinary tour entitled “In the footsteps of a Dragon” – a culinary itinerary tailor-made by Chef Chan Yan-tak. The tour includes his favorite local eateries and local wet market visits to show guests different produce and ingredients served on local restaurants’ menus.

 

CL: What is your most memorable experience so far?

Hamson:  We once made an arrangement for a family to visit Macau via helicopter and return to Hong Kong by ferry.  After dropping them off, the helicopter company contacted us as the family had left the ferry tickets inside an envelope. We arranged a bellboy to pick up the tickets had the ferry company deliver them to Macau. The family just had to pick up the tickets at the reception counter after their trip. That’s what being a concierge is all about – a small service done with great heart.

 

CL: What are the qualities of being a good concierge?

Hamson: I think you should always feel proud of your job. It is this passion that keeps you motivated to provide the best service to your customers. We established a positive motto for every concierge at Four Seasons to follow based on the nine letters of “Concierge”:

C:  Consistent:  passionate for your job

O:  Open-minded:  open to learn and accept new things

N:  Never give up:  try your best to fulfill guests’ requests

C:  Connection: establish good relationship with people in the industry

I:  Image: maintain a presentable and a professional image

E:  Empathy: become a good listener for guests and colleagues

R:  Recommendation: provide a variety of recommendation to our visitors

G:  Good idea:  keep our minds flexible with different ideas for different customers

E:  Easy-going:  stay friendly and approachable with others  

 

HAMSON RECOMMENDS

One local Hong Kong food that all first-time guests must have: 

Fake Shark Fin Soup or Egg Waffle/Egg puff

A Hidden Gem that guests must see or do in Hong Kong:

Tai O Fishing Village. It shows the traditional and a tranquil side of Hong Kong that visitors don’t often see.

Hong Kong in two days:

Day 1:  A day trip to Lantau Island – take the Ngong Ping 360 cable car to catch aerial views; visit the Big Buddha; have lunch at Po Lin Monastery; finally, take a relaxing stroll at the streets of Tai O Fishing Village.

Day 2:  A relaxed ding ding tram ride on Hong Kong Island’s waterfront. Feel free to hop on and off to visit wet markets and other local attractions.

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