The importance of the London concierge: an introduction to our own Head Concierge, Iain Haigh

We live in a time where you can be sat having breakfast here in GBR, with your mobile phone or tablet beside you, planning exactly where to go for the day throughout London. You can research attractions, book tickets, find seats for shows and find information on almost anything else you could want to do whilst you’re staying here in our wonderful capital city.

And there’s no doubt this is brilliant. Very few would argue having all that power at your fingertips whilst you’re sat sipping your morning cappuccino and tucking into your eggs benedict is anything other than fantastic.

But it does raise a question around the role of the concierge service. Arguably one of the most important roles in a hotel traditionally, the concierge would offer advice, book reservations, arrange tickets and simply help make your stay as perfect as it can be.

Some might say that is no longer always needed.

Our answer?

We couldn’t do without Iain Haigh, our Head Concierge – and we know our guests couldn’t either!

Book now: stays for 3 nights but only pay for 2

You see, Iain’s knowledge far exceeds what most of us have access to freely online. Yes, you can book tickets for a show, but can you do it for a sold out show? Or get the best seats in the house at last minute’s notice? It’s definitely not easy, but it’s not unheard of for Iain to successfully complete such requests from guests.

In fact, requests such as these might even be considered tame in comparison to others – one of Iain’s most notable stories reads like something out of a movie script:

“I had a call from someone at the airport who wanted to be picked up by helicopter in 45 minutes’ time then taken to Windsor and Stonehenge by chauffeur. That would usually take a week to organise – but we did it!”

When you’re part of the London’s inner circle of concierge staff, your service goes above and beyond just making reservations. It’s about making your stay ideal; truly suited to your needs. It’s about offering advice and a service that can only be possible through years of building up an extensive network of trusted contacts, all of whom form part of Iain’s highly revered ‘little black book’.

And sometimes our guests may only use Iain’s services once, but many others use him as a go-to resource whenever they’re in London.

Iain has a great tale he tells about a returning guest who puts their entire trust in Iain year after year:

“There is a guest who, six years down the line will call and say, ‘here’s my credit card, book everything’ – from Ronnie Scott’s to theatre to dinner, the V&A, Tate. They have an amazing stay with us in the penthouse at DUKES LONDON for six weeks.”

“They will say, ‘Iain is in charge of my stay’. It is a very personal service and you are treated as a friend.”

Whilst using the services of a concierge can simply be easier than arranging activities yourself, one thing we hear a lot of is how Iain’s service ties into the whole traditional experience of DUKES London. We’ve been operating for well over 100 years now, and concierges have always formed part of our experience, helping to make your stay exactly what you need it to be when you’re out and about in London.

Times change, technology is introduced and we’re generally a more ‘DIY’ society today – but we know that when our guests stay with us, they genuinely cherish and adore the experience Iain can offer as one of London’s most well respected concierges.

This summer, DUKES LONDON is celebrating the opening of the historic Summer Exhibition of the Royal Academy of Arts which is within walking distance of the hotel. In addition to an overnight stay and breakfast, our guests can enjoy exclusive tickets to the iconic display which our concierge will happily arrange. Check out our offers page for more.