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Hilton Strasbourg Chief Concierge Attends "Up in the Air" Premier
December 11, 2009
STRASBOURG, France - When my GM called me in his office to tell me the Hilton Strasbourg had won the Hilton Up in the Air sweepstake and I was flying to Los Angeles by the end of the week to assist with the première, I could not believe it! But when he said we had to take pictures while he would hand me over the winning ticket, I realized it was true. I had no trouble convincing my wife to join me for the trip: 'You'll see George Clooney, and me, what else would you expect?'
After a 16-hour journey, it was really great to experience the treatment of an important Hilton guest - limousine waiting at the airport to take us to The Beverly Hilton where our luggage was brought up to the corner suite that had been reserved for us, VIP set-up and a personal gift for the occasion.
We were later invited for dinner at a famous steakhouse where we met the other winners of the contest, Scott, a Hilton Honors guest and his mother and Patricia , a fellow Hilton Team Member, and her husband from San Antonio, Texas. While sharing the experience that had brought us here for this special event, we realized that it seemed normal to us to answer above guests' expectations - when possible- and that our company's strength enabled us to do it, creating for them memorable 'Hilton moments'. We were all here for one purpose - contribute to making Up in the Air a success!
On the following day, a long stretch limousine took us on a sightseeing tour through Los Angeles. We were 'stars' visiting other stars' homes...and even had our own dedicated photographer and videographer! We visited the newly opened Grammy museum, with its collection of awards and an exhibition of personal belongings of Michael Jackson, quite impressive! We also visited Santa Monica and its long beach at the end of the tour.
That evening, we attended a champagne reception at Le Chateau where we were interviewed to tell our winning story. For the Red Carpet premiere, a limousine big enough for the 14 of us took us to the Mann's Village Theatre where you saw the red carpet outside, fences to keep the public out of the way and security people controlling the entrance; we were in the last part of a process that I could not have dreamt of two days ago!
We had seats on the balcony and could see people entering the theater and rumors indicated these people were the actors of the movie - and it was true! After a short speech from Jason Reitman, the film's director, we discovered the film launched for the first time in the USA!
We went back to The Beverly Hilton, where a reception was being held and we were invited to join it. The Ballroom was splendidly decorated, blue lights on the walls and an immaculate white carpet, food and beverage spread on three levels, live band and a private corner for the VIPs. For sure, Hilton wanted it to be THE memorable party!!!
I had the opportunity to see the three major actresses, have a picture taken with Vera Farmiga, and see George Clooney at very close range. Our return flight brought us back to France the following day. It had been an intense journey with the premiere as its climax.
I realized afterwards that this promotional operation had been made possible because of the gathering of various competencies and energies put together for this objective. This time, I had not been a participant but a spectator, even if I had the possibility to understand what had been necessary in the back of the house to make it a quiet and smooth running operation.
Thank you very much John, Heather, Martin, Chris, Alessia and Larry for this invitation.
I am eager to participate in the next one: "On the moon with Hilton!"
Jean-Marie Lecot, Chief Concierge, Hilton Strasbourg, is a 28 year Hilton Team Member.