Of all of the benefits of destination club membership, one of the most intangible is the services provided by the club concierges. Available to assist with just about any request that members have, these concierges have fulfilled many ordinary and extraordinary requests throughout the years. M Private Residences, a Canadian equity destination club, offers private concierges they call Mbassadors. These Mbassadors have extensive knowledge of the local area and are available to help with virtually any and all members' requests.
Like a traditional resort concierge, the destination club concierge is often asked for basic requests like reservations for hard-to-get-into restaurants, tickets for sporting events, theater tickets, arranging for tours, and booking spa treatments.
However, destination club concierges also work on more out-of-the-ordinary requests. David Clarke, a concierge at M Private Residences for almost 10 years, describes many different requests such as helping find grown kids rent a place in London while in college, assisting another member to find a home to purchase in London, and planning parties. David Clarke was also asked to help organize a Christmas celebration for one member. According to Clarke, "It was easy for me to buy the food items that I have for my own Xmas lunch - turkey and all the trimmings! In addition, the member wanted the flat decorated, so I had to source and decorate a tree. Presents - I was given outlines and a rough budget. I did research in advance and sent through suggestions to the members in advance of making any purchases, and they loved the shortlist I sent through which really helped them decide on the perfect gifts".
Huguette Brousse, an M Private Residences concierge in France, has assisted in finding French ancestors, has helped in the exchange of a rental vehicle when the wrong fuel has been used, has found medical assistance, and translated for the purchase and shipment of antiques. Huguette has also been called on to assist in emergency medical situations, by traveling to the Emergency Room, translating, and picking up medication.
Brousse, as well as Michele Davis, an M Private Residences concierge in Victoria, Canada have both been asked to find private chefs for guests. According to Davis, most guests are looking for food that's distinct to the area. In Victoria, for instance, most people request seafood meals. Davis describes a recent event she coordinated. "We did have a wonderful meal prepared for 8 men who were on a golf trip at Bear Mountain.
The table was quite impressive with the steak served on large heavy wood platters. The entire setting was very masculine and rustic".
Pauline Francis, an Mbassador at Whistler, recently helped organize a get-together for a member and his hockey teammates. From renting tables and chairs to setting the tables, Francis took care of much of the details so that her member would feel confident that the event would go off without a hitch. According to Francis, "His party was very much organized on his own but required some help in the set up details; this is where we stepped in, Jane and I. We met and discussed what was needed, which was an extra table (we had), and rental of chairs to accommodate 24 people. We gathered an extra large wooden salad bowl, steak knives, forks and dessert bowls, cleaned and wrapped potatoes in foil. They had organized the food, so no catering. Once we gathered everything we were in to help with the set up and last minute touch up before their guests arrived. They were amazed on how in control we had it all and claimed 'we couldn't have done it without your help'!".
Of all of the requests that Hughette Brousse has received, none has been quite as extraordinary as a member's wedding (pictures above). Starting one year in advance, Brousse assisted in finding the ideal place for the venue and accommodations for the groom's relatives and friends, assisting with rental of the property, and providing suggestions for caterer, florist, hairdresser, restaurants, and bride's vehicle. But the wedding planning didn't stop there. When the parents' suitcase containing the wedding clothes was lost at the airport, Brousse assisted with finding local stores for new clothes. Procurement of a new hair straightener was also required when the member's failed. Finally, on the wedding day, Brousse was called to steam iron the wedding dress.