‘This has been an exceptionally tough year, and one of only the reasons we are still in business is because my husband is the chef. He has been working on his own in the kitchen cooking breakfast, lunch and dinner – five days a week. We have closed far more than in previous years in order to give him time off. Turnover is down by a whopping 30%. We have hardly any staff although we have been looking – we can’t find anyone decent. A good chef de partie seems to be a mythical creature – the ones that do show up for trial shifts – think they are chef de partie level and therefore want the salary to match – but they are really only commis chef level – and are not willing to give it a go for a few months at a lower salary to prove themself.
‘We have no objections to paying good money – but they need to be able to do the job. Front of house is just as bad – we are lucky to have a great girl who has worked for us for years – otherwise we would have given up by now. What is the future for small hotels like ours? Do we just give up on quality and serve sandwiches at lunch like everywhere else? And chips with everything? And find someone else do to that so my husband can go elsewhere? It seems no amount of awards brings enough business. We can’t understand why after 12 years trading we are not busier. We only have six rooms – I finally gave in last autumn and went on Booking.com and I have reduced our rates. GHG hotelier.
‘Unbelievably I had just altered all my details for your Guide when my chef handed her notice in on the phone this morning.’ GHG hotelier
GHG reply: ‘I always say that if I ever made the mistake of attempting to run a hotel, I would marry the chef (male or female) in an attempt to keep him or her onboard.’
‘Thank you for your enquiry, however I am very sorry but the hotel is now fully booked for accommodation until the end of December, please let us know if you would like to go on the waitlist in case of any cancellations or we can check some further dates for you.’ Morston Hall reception.