Sponsored: Javier Robles and the art of exceptional hospitality
Paid advertisement by The Little America Hotel.
Little America is a well-known pillar in the Salt Lake City community. With locally-loved restaurants, exceptionally elegant interiors, and a famous signature style of hospitality, it’s no wonder why families and corporate groups have chosen to gather here for generations. But beyond a reputation for delicious made-from-scratch menus and stunning event spaces, one of the biggest reasons groups return to Little America year after year is the people diligently working behind-the-scenes. Especially people like Javier Robles.
As Little America’s Banquets Director, Javier Robles creates unforgettable experiences for individuals on an unimaginable scale. Overseeing all banquets across 25,000 square feet of special event space (plus an additional 100,000 square feet of functional space he also oversees at Little America’s sister property across the street, The Grand America), he regularly welcomes large groups–some even as large as over 3,000 guests.
Even so, Javier has a special gift for remembering small details about hundreds of individuals. It’s a talent that is hard to understand or believe until you witness it firsthand. Never writing anything down, he operates with a near photographic memory, instantly recalling long lineages of clients’ tastes and preferences. This client prefers Coke, but his wife will take a Diet. This other guest always takes two sugars in her coffee. If, say, he remembers that one client mentioned having a daughter who likes macarons, that client could receive a hand-delivered box of the colorful French delicacy to take home just before they leave. The unwritten “list” goes on and on. Javier always delivers. His talent for thoughtful, tailor-made service is a large part of what keeps guests coming back to Little America for every special event.
23 years in the making
As a young man, Javier worked in construction before transitioning to roles in food and beverage. Even as this work took him further into the hospitality industry, he never saw it as a career. Position after position, it had always felt like just a job.
But working for Little America changed all of that. Almost 23 years ago, he started as a member of the hotel’s Banquet Set-up team. After being promoted into other positions like Beverage Captain and then into management, he now directs the whole department of around 130 to 140 employees.
Beyond his day-to-day obligations, he often finds himself called on for assistance in a variety of customer support scenarios. Recently, an executive client mentioned wishing he had a navy blue suit jacket to wear for a company photo. Javier, who was in the room setting up a coffee break, calmly sprang into action. Knowing he had a freshly-laundered navy blue suit in his office, he retrieved it and had it back to the Presidential Suite for the executive with more than enough time to spare before the photo-op.
The Javier way
Javier is proud to declare that no other hotel, here in Salt Lake and beyond, has “a Javier.” They may have any number of fine qualities, but no other hotel can offer the special way Javier can make guests feel when they come to Little America.
When he says he has seen departing guests and groups cry, it sounds surprising. But those who have seen it in action know that Javier is the master of making guests feel at home. So much so that guests find it hard to leave. It’s part of the reason why he loves serving larger conferences and convention groups. From the moment they arrive on property, he takes the time to form relationships and make individuals feel like Little America is their home away from home.
It’s been easy for Javier to build a legacy in one place for the past 23 years. He loves the people he works with and the culture of the company. Still, his legacy is already being handed down. He consciously trains his team in the “Javier-way” of hospitality and service. So we can all rest assured that Little America will always “have” a Javier.
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