Hotel, Casino, and Resort Concierge

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Hotel, Casino, and Resort Concierge

Education and Training: High school and on-thejob training

Salary: Median—$26,571 per year

Employment Outlook: Good

Definition and Nature of the Work

The concierge in a large hotel, casino, or resort acts as a "personal assistant" to the patrons of the establishment. He or she is the person guests go to when they need help making restaurant reservations, finding the right local attractions, or buying tickets for theater, sporting, and other events. Depending on the establishment, a concierge will either make the reservations and procure the tickets or make recommendations and offer suggestions on the best way for patrons to satisfy their needs.

Out-of-town hotel, casino, and resort guests typically have many questions when they travel, and it is up to the concierge to know the answers. A concierge must be familiar with the area's tourist spots, must be able to provide accurate directions to guests' destinations, and must have a good working relationship with the managers of nearby restaurants, theaters, and other attractions to get the best seats for patrons. Above all a concierge needs to make a good impression on guests by always being friendly, helpful, and well groomed.

Education and Training Requirements

Candidates for a concierge job should have at least a high school education. Some large hotels prefer to hire people who have some college experience. Onthe-job training is almost always provided. Good telephone and computer skills are essential. Concierges should also have strong interpersonal and problem-solving skills and be able to work quickly and under pressure.

Getting the Job

Interested individuals can learn about concierge jobs from state employment agencies, newspaper want ads, or job banks on the Internet. They can also apply directly to the hotels, casinos, and resorts in which they would like to work. Students in a hotel management program should check for job leads at their school's placement office.

Advancement Possibilities and Employment Outlook

Lodging managers generally prefer to promote their existing employees rather than hire people from outside the staff. Some concierges begin by working at hotels as bellhops or desk clerks; however, concierges at midsized hotels, casinos, and resorts can also advance by moving to larger, more prestigious establishments. Concierges who do their jobs well can advance to management positions, although further education may be necessary to make this move. Many colleges and junior colleges offer courses and programs in hotel management.

The hotel, casino, and resort industry is expected to grow faster than the average through the year 2014. An increase in business travel as well as in domestic and foreign tourism will create a demand for all lodging workers. But each hotel has only one concierge working on each shift, so competition for the job can be stiff.

Working Conditions

Hotels, casinos, and resorts are pleasant places to work, but because they are usually open seven days a week twenty-four hours a day, concierges may work nights, weekends, and holidays. They usually put in an eight-hour day five days a week.

Concierges typically have a separate desk or station in the lobby of a large hotel, casino, or resort. The area can be noisy, especially at check-in and check-out times, which are the busiest. Concierges are usually on their feet most of the day.

Where to Go for More Information

American Hotel and Lodging Association
1201 New York Ave. NW, Ste. 600
Washington, DC 20005-3931
(202) 289-3100

The International Council on Hotel, Restaurant, and Institutional Education
2810 N. Parham Rd., Ste. 230
Richmond, VA 23294
(804) 346-4800

275 Seventh Ave.
New York, NY 10001-6708
(212) 265-7000

Earnings and Benefits

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, concierges earned a median salary of $26,571 in 2004, which may include tips. Those working in metropolitan areas usually earn more. Benefits include paid vacations and holidays, health insurance, life insurance, and retirement plans. Educational assistance may also be available.