Hotel GB: Meet The Staff: Gordon Ramsay, Katie Piper, Gok Wan, Dr Christian Jessen, Phil Spencer, Kirstie Allsopp, Hilary Devey,
Job Title: Co General Manager in charge of the Restaurant, the Bar and the Gym
Best known for: Michelin star chef and restaurateur; rescuing failing restaurants; part-time marathon runner; and full-time ball-breaker.
Hotel GB Job Role: As Co General Manager and leader of the boys’ team, Gordon will oversee the smooth running of the kitchen, restaurant, bar, room service and gym ensuring each area is providing excellent customer service and generating as much money as possible. Gordon will rule over the stove to guarantee the Hotel GB restaurant is the best eatery in town. From the standard and presentation of the food, to the level of service, nothing will pass Gordon’s discerning eyes, as great food is served up for your delectation at great value for money. And Gordon will pay special attention to his guests at the Chef’s Table – VIPs and high-rollers – who are sure to test the short-tempered chef’s patience. Whether it is an intimate evening meal you require, or breakfast in bed, Gordon’s restaurant will be able to accommodate you. And his team of trainees will be on call 24 hours just in case you fancy a quick snack in the middle of the night. So make your reservations early, as tables are sure to be booked up quickly.
Do say: Great food. Great service. Done!
Don’t say: 1. Can I get some tomato ketchup with my fillet mignon please? 2. I’ll have the vegetarian option. 3. Is it possible to get a McFlurry for dessert?
Gordon said: “With Mary Portas heading up the girls team and me heading up the boys team, Hotel GB is a challenge like no other. We are all putting ourselves on the line to help kick-start careers for young people in the service industry. We, with our team of experts, are going to take over a hotel and turn it into a training ground for unemployed youth desperate for a break.
The real excitement will come when members of the public book a room or visit the spa and restaurant and pay for the services; if they think they are up to scratch. The money raised will provide funds for a project designed to tackle unemployment. Working in hospitality is high pressure and challenging at the best of times so this is going to be one interesting journey!”
Job Title: Co General Manager in charge of Rooms, Reception and Spa
Best known for: Championing excellent customer service; rescuing failing shops on the British High Street; and her no-nonsense advice.
Job Role: Leader of the girls’ team and Co General Manager, Mary will bring her exacting high standards to Hotel GB with excellent service and customer care at the forefront of her mind. Overseeing the smooth running of the hotel’s rooms, spa and front desk – reception and concierge – Mary’s responsibility is to ensure that from the point at which you arrive at the hotel, to when you leave, you enjoy your Hotel GB experience. So if Kim’s cleanliness isn’t up to your standards, or you find Kirstie the Concierge unforthcoming, Mary will be on hand to address all concerns, as we all know that a happy customer is a paying customer! As well as leading the other ladies in their day-to-day duties, Mary will also be in charge of the entire Hospitality trainee team, using her management and mentoring skills to ensure they gain as much experience as possible in the hope of landing a job offer at the end of the week. Should you have any problems during your stay at Hotel GB please do seek Mary and her team out as they would be delighted to serve you.
Do say: You can’t beat service with a smile!
Don’t say: Customer service is an American concept. We’re British, we don’t do chirpy. Just give me my key and stop bloody grinning at me.
Mary said: “My team and I will deliver service with not only a smile, but innovation, brilliance, fun, entertainment and the ultimate style. So Boys, watch out…”
Job Title: Bar Manager
Best known for: Styling the nation; a champion of control pants and waist belts; and being just as handy with a needle and thread as he is with a knife and wok.
Hotel GB Job Role: Come and get shaken and stirred with Gok Wan – Hotel GB’s resident Bar Manager. Bringing a sense of glamour to the boys’ team, Gok will use his fashionable eye to add a touch of flamboyance to Hotel GB’s Bar. Forget the usual stuffy hotel drinking holes you may have visited, Gok’s bar is guaranteed to be the hottest spot in London throughout Hotel GB’s run. Fun, lively and full of delicious drinks and cocktails to suit every preference, the bar will be the perfect place to have a few drinks with friends and do a bit of celeb spotting..
Do say: Is Sex on the Beach just a cocktail option *wink*?
Don’t say: Nice cocktail, darling, but you might want to pay a bit of attention to your appearance, too.
Gok said: “I can’t wait to get stuck in and help raise lots of cash for charity. I’m not quite sure what to expect as Bar Manager, but I certainly know how to put on a good do and am really looking forward to bringing out my competitive side with all the others. For guests who tip generously, I might even throw in a free Gok-tail. ”
DR CHRISTIAN JESSEN
Job Title: Manager of Health and Wellbeing, Gym (and hotel doctor)
Best known for: Examining the nation’s warts, prolapses and itchy scrotums on national television; his flamboyant shirts.
Hotel GB Job Role: Feeling a bit tubby? Have you been dying to banish those stubborn muffin tops and moobs for good? Prepare to be blown away as the nation’s favourite doctor, Dr Christian swaps loud shirts for spandex and puts his buff body and anatomical know-how to good use as Hotel GB’s Manager of Health and Wellbeing, taking charge of the gym as well as other medical matters in the hotel. In the gym guests can take part in fun group exercise classes, or if you are willing to pay a little extra, get hot and sweaty with Dr Christian in a personal training session. As long as you pass Dr Christian’s thorough induction, then all visitors are welcome – just bring a towel and water, as things are bound to get physical. If exercise isn’t for you, Dr Christian will also provide health MOTs, where at a cost guests can get a frank and personal health assessment and tips to improve your general wellbeing. And Dr Christian will also be on call throughout the hotel’s run, just in case any medical emergencies arise. So, whether it’s a six pack you’re after, or just a plaster for your cut finger, Dr Christian is available to whip you into shape.
Do say: Christian, baby, you put the FIT into fitness.
Don’t say: Never mind the Boxercise class, take a look at this wart on Mr Winkle.
Dr Christian said: ‘Hotel GB is a fantastic idea, which I am itching to get my teeth into. I enjoy the gym very much in my down time, so to be able to work in one as a job can only be a dream come true. Coupled with the opportunity to help some unemployed young people to gain confidence, self-esteem and hopefully a job as well, who could ask for better job satisfaction? Bring it on!’
Job Title: Maître d’
Best known for: Advising house hunters in the UK and down under; his wry smile; and for being the other half of the most popular presenting partnership on TV.
Hotel GB Job Role: Table for two please! Property guru and English gent, Phil Spencer takes on the role of Hotel GB’s part-time Maître d, working closely with Head Chef Gordon to make sure that service in the restaurant runs smoothly and all customers are happy. With a team of trainee waiters under his watch, Phil will be your first port of call for table booking, and as reservations are expected to go fast, he will need to juggle tables to guarantee that Gordon’s kitchen is never over-stretched and that guests are not left waiting upon arrival. As a master negotiator, Phil will be at the front line of customer requests and complaints, always going that extra step to provide the best possible service to everyone especially the VIP guests at the Chef’s Table who may prove particularly tricky. So do seek Phil out upon check-in, and he will be happy to accommodate your dining requests. All tips welcome, of course.
Do say: Ooh, you’re so much better than that dreadful Allsopp woman.
Don’t say: Phil Spencer? I think Frank Spencer would have done a better job.
Phil said: “Customer service is at the heart of all organisations and as Maître D in Gordon’s restaurant it’s going to fall to me to make sure everyone has an enjoyable time. I have zero experience so it’s certainly going to be tough, but it should also be fun. It’s a great opportunity to raise both cash and awareness of youth unemployment and I’m hoping to be able to set a decent example to my trainees. I’m hugely looking forward to it.”
Job Title: Spa and Salon Manager
Best known for: Overcoming adversity to become an advocate for people with facial disfigurements; founder of The Katie Piper Foundation; and having celebrity friends such as Simon Cowell.
Hotel GB Job Role: As a former beautician, Katie will put her training to good use as the hotel’s Spa and Salon Manager. Feeling tense after a long journey? Fancy a quick blow dry or manicure before that big night out? No problem, as Katie and her team will be on hand to provide all the treatments you would expect from the most exclusive spas and salons around. Katie has seen it all – the good, the bad, and the downright hairy – so she and her team will be happy to tend to your tarnished talons and distressed tresses during your time in Hotel GB, no matter what your needs. From full-body massages to Back, Sack and Crack waxes, nothing will be off limits. So if ‘manscaping’ is your thing, or you have a passion for that sun-kissed look all year round, then Katie’s spa is the place for you. But each treatment will be priced accordingly, so be sure to bring your wallets – and your nerve – and book ahead to avoid disappointment.
Do say: Katie, you’re a magician. I’ve gone from Old King Cole to Cheryl Cole.
Don’t say: This spray tan is more Benidorm than St Tropez.
Katie said: “I’m really excited about getting back into a beauty uniform again and getting stuck in! I love a challenge and having met the rest of the girls I’m confident we will make the most money!
Working in a spa in the past was very eventful and there was never a dull day, with a real cross section of clients with varying needs and I’m pretty sure Hotel GB will be similar, but I’m ready so bring it on!”
Job Title: Concierge
Best known for: Advising house hunters; reigniting the nation’s interest in crafts; being fiercely outspoken; and one half of the most popular presenting partnerships on TV.
Hotel GB Job Role: No job will prove too hard for Kirstie Allsopp as she takes on the role of Hotel GB’s part-time Concierge. In this role, Kirstie will go that extra mile to guarantee all guest enquiries and requests are dealt with swiftly, thoroughly and with a smile. After years spent helping house hunters find their dream properties, Kirstie has learnt a thing or two about getting customers what they want and quickly. But at the hotel she will need to put her pride to the side as these requests will be particularly challenging. Being an expert on London night life is just one of the more simple aspects of her role, which she’ll want to do well as every tip counts. And VIP guests will prove especially demanding, with pedantic and seemingly impossible requirements in store to test the nerve of Ms Allsopp. So whether you require an ‘extra pillow’ at midnight or just a taxi to take you to the airport, Kirstie is here to make your Hotel GB experience as fun and stress-free as possible.
Do say: Would you mind popping up with an extra pillow?
Don’t say: You’re not by any chance in uniform, are you Kirstie?
Kirstie said “Hotel GB is a great idea, and as part of the Channel 4 team I’m looking forward to doing my bit to help raise money for youth unemployment charities. I’m not sure how I’ll fare as Hotel GB’s Concierge, but I have stayed in many hotels over the years and I know what an important role they play, so hopefully the guests will go easy on me. Going head-to-head with the boys team should prove interesting too but with Mary and co on my team, there is no question as to who will raise the most money!”
Job Title: Head of Housekeeping
Best known for: Being the Mary Poppins of cleanliness; educating the nation about the wonders of bicarbonate of soda; and making rubber gloves look glamorous.
Hotel GB Job Role: As the queen of clean, Kim and her team of trainees will rule over the tidiness of the hotel. Having been in the hospitality industry for decades, Kim is one of the most experienced of the Hotel GB staff, and takes pride in a dust-free mirror and a spotless loo, so won’t be phased by any horrors left behind in the rooms from the night before. Each morning Kim and her team have 90 minutes to tidy the rooms, taking them from ‘Occupied and Dirty’ to ‘Vacant and Inspected’ in time for your visit. Kim will also be in charge of the cleanliness of the hotel reception and corridors and will also wield her feather duster if she feels other areas, such as Gordon’s kitchen or Katie’s spa are lagging behind. Need an extra towel or help flushing that pesky floater? Kim and her Housekeeping team will be glad to help and ensure your time at Hotel GB is as comfortable as possible. So please show your appreciation when you stay by offering a generous tip…you may even be rewarded with an extra chocolate on your pillow.
Do say: You could eat your dinner off that toilet.
Don’t say: I’ve just returned my dinner to that toilet. And I’m afraid quite a lot of it missed.
Kim said: “I am absolutely thrilled to be taking part in this programme which is raising money for charities such as the Prince’s Trust and helping young people get into work. I love cleaning, and have stayed in so many hotels over the years and am always horrified by the little bits of dirt you find in the corners and behind the beds, so relish the thought of helping to put those things right.”
Job Title: Manager of the hotel shop, the House of Devey
Best known for: Hugely successful businesswoman and entrepreneur; TV personality; and her eccentric sense of style.
Hotel GB Job Role: Extravagant entrepreneur, and self-style fashion icon Hilary Devey will take on the role as manageress of the House of Devey – our well-stocked concession stand in the hotel lobby. Filled with all manner of merchandise, such as T-shirts and mugs, to high-end doggie paraphernalia like diamante dog collars and cute pooch outfits, the hotel shop will give visitors the chance to take home a piece of Hotel GB celebrity memorabilia – if you are willing to splash the cash of course. But if the wares of our C4 celebrity staff don’t impress you, Hilary will also stock special gifts from the many VIP guests that visit the hotel throughout the week. So if you do not manage to get a glimpse of Gordon in the kitchen or Gok in the bar, be sure to pop into Devey’s to possibly pick up a small piece of your favourite Channel 4 stars.
Do say: I’m looking for a fascinator for my long-haired Chihuahua, Trixie.
Don’t say: Sorry, Trixie’s left you a little present in the changing room.
Hilary said: “I must have stayed in just about every five-star hotel in world, but I intend for Hotel GB to be the very best. The show sounds like it will be a great deal of fun, but with the potential for some dramatic clashes of egos. Starting and developing businesses is what I’ve been doing all my life, so managing the hotel shop should be easy enough, and though I will be the living, breathing embodiment of good customer service, behind the scenes, I will not suffer fools! However, as long as I raise more money for charity than anyone else, I will be content.”