The world's coolest concierges

Tamara Hinson

Let's face it. Holidays are all about relaxation, which is why we've got a soft spot for the increasingly weird and wonderful concierge services being rolled out around the world. Here are some of our favourites:

Steak knife concierge, Park Hyatt Aviara Resort, Carlsbad, California, US

Anyone who's anyone knows that taking the wrong type of steak knife to your tenderloin is a serious faux pas. But for those who don't know the difference between a Foeschner or a Fixwell (two of the most popular brands), there's the steak knife concierge at the Park Hyatt Aviara.

His job? To present you with a selection of knives chosen to suit your cut of beef. Apparently one of the most popular choices is the Hammer Stahl. It's crafted in Germany, then shipped to Asia, where a pakkawood handle is fitted.

A gold star to anyone who dares ask the concierge if the manufacturer invests in carbon offsetting.

 

Margarita concierge, Esperanza, an Auberge Resort, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico

This Mexican resort is famous for its poolside cocktail menu—head poolside and you'll discover drinks coolers filled with everything from iced frappés to delicious margaritas.

And you don't have to move a muscle either, because the hotel has the world's first margarita concierge who, in addition to serving you drinks, will happily give you a tutorial on how to prepare the perfect cocktail, should you ever muster up the energy to do so.

 

Vinyl concierge, The Kimpton Goodland, Goleta, California, US

Southern California (or SoCal as it's known to anyone who's down with the kids) is famous for its chilled out vibe and musical roots—Katy Perry, Green Day and Cher all come from this part of the world, after all. So it's hardly surprising that the Kimpton Goodland in Goleta has a vinyl concierge.

His job? To ensure the hotel's record store is stocked with the latest musical masterpieces, to advise guests considering purchasing some vinyl of their own, and to help them choose music to play on their in-room record players.

Just don't expect a warm response if you ask for something by Justin Bieber.

 

Sarong concierge, The Ritz-Carlton, Bali, Indonesia

Whether you're looking for a sarong for a special occasion or simply as a souvenir, Bali's Ritz-Carlton hotel will come to the rescue with their dedicated sarong concierge. But you won't just get help picking the right one—you'll be taken on a half-day tour of Bali's Gianyar region (famous for its sarong workshops) where you'll learn how to identify authentic sarongs, how to wrap them and how the textiles are dyed, coloured and woven.

You'll also be taught about sarong-related etiquette, and how to walk in one, so leave those three-inch wedges at the hotel.

 

Watch concierge, Kimpton Mason & Rook Hotel, Washington DC, US

Although it's not a feeling we're familiar with, we imagine that for some, arriving at a hotel to realise you've left your £7,000 Rolex Submariner at home might be somewhat distressing. Not so at the Kimpton Mason & Rook Hotel, which has its own watch concierge.

The property has teamed up with luxury watch brand Shinola to offer its watch concierge service, which allows guests in urgent need of some arm candy to borrow a Shinola timepiece for the night.

The dedicated watch concierge will help the guest choose from eight iconic styles, although a word of warning— they range in price from £430 to £645, so handle with care, unless you're prepared for a nasty shock upon check out.

 

Doggie concierge, Rosewood London, UK

Why should humans have all the fun? The luxurious Rosewood London hotel's canine concierge service is a must for discerning doggies.

Pooches whose owners sign up for the dedicated canine concierge package will get a welcome card and doggie treats from the resident golden retriever, Pearl, along with in-room amenities, including a Barbour dog bed, Barbour dog coats, and leads and a guide (apparently written by Pearl, although we're sceptical to say the least) to the best places for those all-important walkies.

 

Sleep concierge, The Benjamin, New York City, US

Your hotel room might well claim to have America's comfiest bed, but when the couple next door are having the world's loudest argument, or the air conditioning unit sounds like an apache helicopter taking off, the land of nod will suddenly seem rather far away.

Not so at The Benjamin, an NYC hotel with its very own sleep concierge service, overseen  by sleep expert Dr Rebecca Robbins. Spend the night here and you'll be able to choose from 10 different pillows, and can request added extras such as eye masks, "bedtime bites" snacks, ear plugs and blackout curtains.

We always thought the Big Apple's skyline was overrated, anyway.

 

Bath concierge, Mr C Beverly Hills, Los Angeles, US

This one's for the truly lazy. The achingly-hip Mr C Beverly Hills hotel in Los Angeles has a bath concierge. His job? to draw the perfect bath, filled with water of a temperature specified by the guest, and the ideal aromatherapy oil, chosen to match his or her temperament. Which could probably safely be described as "demanding" if the thought of running one's own bath sounds too much like hard work.

 

Soap concierge, Viceroy Riviera Maya, Playa del Carmen, Mexico

There are certain occasions when those tiny bars of hotel soap just won't cut it. Apparently, this particular concierge's job is to offer guests a range of "artisanal cleansing options", although we advise against school leavers citing this job as a life goal during meetings with career advisers.

The concierge will show guests a selection of handmade Mayan soaps, slicing off a chunk of the bar in question once the guest comes to a decision.

Think of it as a soap version of a cheese board, albeit with a slightly more pleasant smell.

 

Crayfish concierge, The Ritz-Carlton, New Orleans, US 

Love a bit of seafood? So do we, although we're less keen on getting bits of crayfish stuck under our fingernails, which is why it makes perfect sense to let someone else take care of the dirty work.

At the Ritz-Carlton New Orleans' regular crayfish boils, a crayfish concierge is on hand to help guests enjoy the city's most famous delicacy, and he'll even peel them if asked.

 

Sunglasses concierge, Chileno Bay Resort & Residences, Los Cabos, Mexico

When you're halfway across the pool wedged into an inflatable flamingo, the pair of Oakley's which you left by the edge can seem an awful long way away.

Enter the Chileno Bay Resort & Residences' pool concierge, whose main job is to maintain guests' sunglasses and ensure they're ready for action at all times.

His weapons of choice? Micro fibre cloths and a bottle of lens cleaner. Sun cream and sand, do your worst.

 

Beer concierge, Kimpton Hotel Palomar San Diego, California, US

We'd definitely take advantage of this next concierge should we ever visit San Diego, although we're admittedly rather tempted to inquire about vacancies.

The Kimpton Hotel Palomar's beer concierge is a dedicated beer expert who's a wealth of information on all things hop-related.

Looking for San Diego's best bars? No problem. Partial to a fruit beer or two? He's on it.

All guests are given a craft-beer focused welcome letter, and the concierge can also provide tasting notes for a huge selection of San Diego's most popular lagers. How this particular employee stays sober is anyone's guess.