From a business perspective, we needed to do some market research and discover accommodations, amenities, services and facilities that truly first class establishments provide: those things that make them first class versus the also ran upscale establishments. During our three week research visit in Europe there were several places, things and services that clearly were heads above the also ran upscale establishments that we encountered. Some were provided us during our visit to their establishment and a few we just witnessed while walking the sites.
The dominate feature of the truly first class places was their quality. Quality of their products, services and amenities. Bed linen was the most obvious and foremost on our research list. 1,200 thread count sheets were nowhere to be found, even at the JW Marriott in Venice, Italy (where we spent our anniversary night). Their linen was nowhere comparable in comfort to the Micro-fiber sheets we use on all our beds. Micro-fiber fabric is used everywhere in Europe as part of there cleaning chores. That fabric is soft for using to cleaning precious surfaces and itself is easily cleaned for reuse. That is why we use the micro-fiber in all our towels and robes. It is soft for those precious surfaces known as our guests and yes it is also Eco-friendly as it is easy to clean and dries twice as fast as Turkish towels or Terry robes. On that point we are first class and have been for many, many years.
The king-size bed in our junior suite at the JW Marriott in Venice, Italy
Name placards for dishes on-board the Emerald Star.
In the far corner at the doorway is the coffeemaker where coffee can be made anytime.
I mentioned earlier that we discovered new ways to fold napkins. The way we have been placing the napkins on the tables is one of those styles, but neither I nor Daryl knew those folded napkins we have done for 12 years was a special fold for first class dining. Daryl has mastered several different styles that he now uses for the first class breakfast table and the occasional dinners.
Daryl has named this style of the folded napkin "The Flower".
On a personal note: 50 years ago we stopped at a jewelry store in Reno on our way to Twin Falls, Idaho to buy our wedding bands. After we were home about two months after our wedding vows Daryl and my brother, Roy, were playing basketball at my parent's house. Daryl made a left handed hook shot and the ring flew off his finger, never to be found. Last March, on one of our visits to our rental property in Reno, I made a secret visit to that same jewelry store to buy another band. I knew it wouldn't fit, but I wanted it to give Daryl on our 50th anniversary. We returned to the store after we got home and had the ring resized.
The wedding band I gave Daryl at the JW Marriott in Venice, Italy.
'Til Next Time .....