Friday, August 29, 2014

Manager of the Quarter, Elizabeth Buchanan

After a bit of a hiatus, we have re-introduced our Manager of the Quarter Award program for 2014.  The first Manager of the Quarter is Elizabeth Buchanan, who is our Evening Manager.

As part of what Elizabeth does, she deals with a broad range of guest and employee issues, and she does it all in the evening when most of us have gone home.  She often must handle some of the most vexing issues just because of the time of day that she covers, but she always does so with a smile, and  she has an evenness to her temperament that makes her ideal for this role.

Andy Seidel, Front Office Manager, congratulating Elizabeth Buchanan, Evening Manager

Elizabeth Buchanan, Manager of the First Quarter, 2014
 Here is the letter that I presented to her as part of her award:

August 27, 2014

Elizabeth Buchanan
Evening Manager
Hawthorne Hotel, 
Salem, MA  01970

Dear Elizabeth:

It did not take us long to decide who should be our first manager of the quarter for 2014.  We the following criteria and your accomplishments this past quarter came immediately to mind:

Results:  What kind of results did you produce during this Quarter?  I firmly believe that results do not lie.  Results are the end of a lot of work, and they are obvious.  

Guest Relations:  In the performance of your job, what kind of impact did you have in the production of high standards of guest relations, on behalf of the Hawthorne Hotel?

Dedication:  How much are you committed to your job at the Hawthorne?

Interpersonal Relations:  Knowing that we have both internal and external ‘customers’ how well did you serve not only your external customers (our guests), but how well did you do in serving the needs of the team of Hawthorne Hotel staff members, in the furtherance of all of our goals?

Professionalism:  In the production of results for the Hawthorne team, how did you complete each of your designated tasks?

In considering all of these objectives, I found you to be a person who:

Accomplished all that was required not only in the first quarter, but also in this past quarter, and have done so with a staunch attitude of never give up and always keep smiling, no matter the circumstances.

Is thoroughly professional in each and every aspect of your job, from handling the toughest guest in a MOD capacity, to assuring that every project you tackle is done both thoroughly and rapidly.

Is extremely well regarded by all of the team members in the hotel.

Is an outstanding leader who brings out the best in the people you work with, creating a true “management-by-example” in everything you do.

Consistently earned the highest marks and persistent praise from every member of the hotel staff for dedication, cooperation and professionalism.  This includes the accounting office, because all of the financial issues you handle are always properly completed.

Is highly regarded by the guests she assists because of her friendly nature and helpful attitude.

Takes the most excellent photos for the blog, and does so with great dedication.

As a token of appreciation for a job well done, it gives me great pleasure to name you, Elizabeth Buchanan, as our Manager of the Quarter for the first quarter of 2014.

Thank you Elizabeth!


Juli Lederhaus
General Manager

I hope you will join me in congratulating Elizabeth!


Thursday, August 28, 2014

Guest Newsletter for Friday, August 29

Here is the Hawthorne Guest Messenger for Friday, August 29, 2014.

Hotel Notes
Want to beat the Summer heat? Try out our Cocktail of the Week the Altos Oasis Especial! Made with agave tequila, cranberry juice, orange juice and splash of triple sec! Perfect to end a long day in the sun!

Weather Forecast   
Mostly sunny, very nice with temperatures in mid-70’s.

What’s Happening in Salem this week
A free community screening of the award-winning film Good Will Hunting!  The event will take place on Sunday August 31st at 7.30pm at CinemaSalem in Salem, MA. Collected donations will directly benefit local and national suicide prevention and mental health charities.
VIP of the Day
The Hawthorne Hotel would like to welcome their VIP of the day, Julie Winnick!

Flags of the Day

This Day in History
Hurricane Katrina makes landfall near New Orleans, Louisiana, as a Category 4 hurricane on this day in 2005. Despite being only the third most powerful storm of the 2005 hurricane season, Katrina was the worst natural disaster in the history of the United States. After briefly coming ashore in southern Florida on August 25 as a Category 1 hurricane, Katrina gained strength before slamming into the Gulf Coast on August 29th.

I hope to see you here!


We Love Surprises

A few weeks ago a member of our team, Alaina Ferriero who is one of our Catering Sales Managers contacted me to ask if she could nominate my assistant, Kayleigh Merritt, for the Part-Time Employee of the Month for August.  I happily agreed, and then we started strategizing how we could do this since Kayleigh takes the minutes at the Managers' meeting where we do the nominations, and basically knows everything that is going on in the hotel.

We developed a way to do this secretly, and not only managed to have her elected to this honor by acclamation, but also were able, with the volunteer help of Jessica Wright, to prepare all the documents for presentation to her at the meeting.

Here are the photos that Jessica took at the meeting:

 And here are the more formal photos that we took in front of the Hotel later in the day.  Oddly enough, and totally happenstance, it turned out that we were flying the Irish flag today, and that is Kayleigh's heritage, so she was thrilled for us to get the flag into the photo.

Kayleigh has been part of the Hawthorne team for about a year and a half, and we are so very happy to have her as part of our awesome group of associates.  She does a terrific job in everything she touches, from the meeting minutes, to handling correspondence, to writing a wonderful monthly employee newsletter and much more.

Special thanks to Kayleigh, and congratulations!

Also, special thanks to Alaina and Jessica for their help in orchestrating this surprise, down to the finest detail, and to Jessica for doing the photography.  What a great team we have here at the Hawthorne Hotel!


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Guest Newsletter for Thursday, August 28

Here is the Hawthorne Guest Messenger for Thursday, August 28, 2014.

Hotel Notes
Want to beat the Summer heat? Try out our Cocktail of the Week the Altos Oasis Especial! Made with agave tequila, cranberry juice, orange juice and splash of triple sec! Perfect to end a long day in the sun!

Weather Forecast   
Cooler, mostly sunny skies, temperatures from 75-80.

What’s Happening in Salem this week
Robin Williams will be remembered tonight on Salem Common as part of the summertime Movies on the Common series.
“Hook,” the 1991 family adventure comedy starring Williams, will be shown on Salem Common starting at “dusk.” Sunset is at 7:35 p.m.

VIP of the Day
The Hawthorne Hotel would like to welcome their VIP of the day, Brenna Grossman!

Flags of the Day
North Carolina

This Day in History
After four years of separation, Charles, Prince of Wales and heir to the British throne, and his wife, Princess Diana, formally divorce. In the year following the divorce, the popular princess seemed well on her way to achieving her dream of becoming "a queen in people's hearts," but on August 31, 1997, she was killed with her companion Dodi Fayed in a car accident in Paris.

I hope to see you here!


Art and Music in an Unusual Place

Many of you know my penchant for walking around the dining rooms of the Hawthorne Hotel, chatting with our guests to really learn more about how we are doing, what brings people here, and just making acquaintances with our customers.

Earlier this week I was doing just that when I met four lovely women who were in for lunch in the Tavern.  When I inquired about their visit, I learned that they had driven here from New Hampshire to see one of the women's son's sculpture, which is on display at the Peabody Institute Library.

Now I was really confused, because it was not the Peabody Essex Museum's Library, and it was not in Peabody, and not in Salem, but it was in Danvers.  Phew, my brain was about to take a tumble.  I persevered, and even jotted the information down in my notebook so that I could make sure to find it.

It was a beautiful day, promising to be an even prettier evening, and since "his" sculpture was part of a display of about 25 pieces, on view and available to the public free of charge at any time, I coaxed my husband into going for a drive over to Danvers that evening to find this place we had never been, to see the artwork.

We were very fortunate, because there was also an outdoor concert taking place on the lawn next to the Library at the time we were there, and the band was quite good.  So we strolled around, taking in the art, listening to good music, and enjoying the beautiful weather.  Life doesn't get too much better than that.

Here are some photos of the beautiful old library building, as well as the people gathered on the grass for the concert:

Following here are some photos of the sculptures.  While I took one of every piece, I decided to just post a few, along with a collage of the rest, because I hope you will take the time to go see these yourself.  After all, you cannot beat the price (free) and sculpture is something that does not reproduce as well in photos -- seeing it in "real life" is so much better.

The show is there through September 19, 2014.

Collage of other pieces:

This follow description is from the Danvers' Library website:

Celebrating the Art of Sculpture 2014, a major exhibition featuring the work of 20 artists from all over New England, is being held outdoors at the Peabody Institute Library of Danvers at 15 Sylvan Street in Danvers. It opens on June 9th and runs through September 19th. The exhibit is sponsored by the Library in cooperation with the Barn Workshop Gallery, also of Danvers.
“We are bringing sculpture into the community in a way that it can be enjoyed by everyone,” says Alan Thibeault, Library Director. “Last year’s exhibition created quite a stir. People came from all over to see the sculptures and we received a lot of positive feedback. The pieces will be on display all summer and the viewing is free, so we hope that families will bring friends and out-of-town guests to learn more about these innovative works on a grand scale.”

The sculptures you’ll see are created of many different materials including stone and metal. One of the wonderful things about sculpture is that you can walk around each piece and examine its lines and structure to get a feel for what each piece is communicating. The outdoor garden setting invites you to take your time, stroll around, see all the sculptures, and then revisit your favorites.

“Even though the sculptures are very different, their size, structure, and placement complement each other and create a cohesive presentation,” explained Michael Guadagno, exhibit curator and president of The Barn Workshop Gallery. 

And here is a link to their concert series.  Unfortunately, there is only one concert left for this season, but based on what we heard this week, you probably want to try to get there for this last one in any case.


I hope you enjoy this information as much as I enjoyed pulling it all together for you, and of course, I hope to see you here.  Oh, and in case you were wondering, my husband did enjoy the "field trip" as well.


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Guest Newsletter for Wednesday, August 27

Here is the Hawthorne Guest Messenger for Wednesday, August 27, 2014.

Hotel Notes
The Hawthorne Hotel would like to welcome the guests with the Synventive Molding Solutions! We are happy to be your home away from home during this trip. If you should need anything at all during your stay please let us know!

Weather Forecast   
Warm with some humidity. Temps in the high 80’s.

What’s Happening in Salem this week
Join A&B Burgers for On Tap: Quizo Trivia Night!
Quizo is a general knowledge team trivia game, played every week in participating establishments. Teams of up to 8 players compete against each other to win fabulous prizes. From 8pm to 10pm at A&B Burgers in Salem! Stop by the Front Desk for directions!

VIP of the Day
The Hawthorne Hotel would like to welcome their VIP of the day, Crystal Coats!

Flags of the Day

This Day in History
On this day in 1883, the most powerful volcanic eruption in recorded history occurs on Krakatau (also called Krakatoa), a small, uninhabited volcanic island located west of Sumatra in Indonesia, on this day in 1883. Heard 3,000 miles away, the explosions threw five cubic miles of earth 50 miles into the air, created 120-foot tsunamis and killed 36,000 people.

I hope to see you here!


She Sells Sea Shells

This past Saturday night there was a lovely wedding that took place in our Grand Ballroom. Sea shells in a Mason jar were the holders of specially made table numbers. We thought that looked particularly summery. Here are photos:

I am sure there is a story about the cake topper for this wedding.  Not sure what it is, but the little pigs were super-adorable:

Special thanks to our evening manager, Elizabeth Buchanan, who took these lovely photos as well.

I hope to see you here.


Monday, August 25, 2014

Red Flowers, Ropes Mansion Gardens

The Gardens at Ropes Mansion are at the height of their beauty, and everything is just spectacular this year due to the beautiful summer we have had.

I hope you will make it a point to visit these lovely gardens when you come to visit #SalemMA.

And as always, I hope to see you here.