Andermatt’s ski butler
In the five-star deluxe hotel The Chedi Andermatt, while the guests are still sound asleep, dreaming about the wonderful slopes of Andermatt-Sedrun ski destination, the smell of warm wax already permeates the air in the hotel’s ski workshop. For Ski Butler Thomas Imholz the working day begins very early to perfectly prepare the hotel guests’ skis for the day’s powder runs. He tells us that getting up early is no problem for him: “The guests should have an unforgettable experience in the mountain world of Andermatt, and our top service is part of that.” After sharpening the last edges, the 23-year-old from Uri places the guests’ skis in the Living Room, right next to the skis of Didier Cuche, Lindsay Vonn or Aksel Lund Svindal. Thomas is proud to have the model of his idol Didier Cuche in the display. Next to the skis of today’s cracks, the History Wall shows the development of skis from 1950 to 2003. In the Living Room, the trained retail business professional proves the knowledge he gained in the sporting goods store of his parents. He instructs customers how to handle the tuned-up skis, gives them tips and shares tricks for getting the most fun out of skiing. He is always happy when he can meet the individual wishes of customers. His speciality: He finds a well-fitting ski boot for every foot.
It’s expected that famous personalities will be staying as guests at The Chedi Andermatt. When asked for whom he would most like to prepare skis one day, he gives a modest answer: “I look forward to every guest, and it’s even nicer when I can welcome them back to Andermatt every year.” His attitude is exactly the right one, so he is on track to become an outstanding butler. And who knows, perhaps soon the royal family from Great Britain will come knocking in search of a ski butler.
Thomas looks forward to the international clientele. To serve them best, new approaches to consultation are needed. He collects the tips and tricks for this in Graubünden, more specifically at the Samedan Professional School for Tourism. In contradistinction to a ski instructor, his interaction with customers is limited to assistance regarding ski equipment. That’s a bit of a pity, because people like Thomas who spend every spare moment on the slopes must cheerfully admit that “The best place to be of course is up in the mountains.”
Among the responsibilities of a ski butler is the careful storage of equipment in the ski room. That’s why Thomas has his own ski boot heating system and other useful devices. Each morning, the guests are happy about their perfectly prepared equipment, including dry and warm ski boots. Incidentally, directly next to the Living Room is the bar, which serves great après ski drinks. When Thomas turns off the lights in the ski room and locks the door, he likes to visit this bar every now and then. Interaction with the guests is important to him. They can learn a lot from him about skis and skiing – and he is also very interested in learning from them – in order to perfect his service.
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