Suffolk One hotel management students get hands-on experience with TA Hotel Collection

The Suffolk One hotel management students at Aldeburgh.

The Suffolk One hotel management students at Aldeburgh. - Credit: Archant

A party of Ipswich students had a day at the seaside at Aldeburgh – to find out about the realities of working in the customer service industry.

The Year 12 hotel management students from Suffolk One travelled to Aldeburgh to apply their customer service college-based studies to on-site hotel experience.

They visited both the White Lion and Brudenell hotels, both part of the TA Hotel Collection group.

They were greeted by the hotels’ general manager, Peter Osborne, at the White Lion and were given a tour of the hotel including the Bar & Brasserie restaurant and the relaxing sea view rooms.

The students also had the opportunity to work in the kitchen, preparing meringues for Eton Mess and decorating biscuits. Then, before lunch in the brasserie, the students were shown the fisherman’s huts and smoke house opposite the hotel and tasted some of the fresh local produce used in its menus.

After lunch the students headed along the seafront to the Brudenell, where they had a tour of the front of house areas and kitchens, which enabled them to compare the customer service provided by the two hotels.

On visiting the rooms at the Brudenell, the students were surprised that a local hotel could provide such luxury and excellent customer service.

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Having thoroughly enjoyed their day, one of the students said; “We had a great time at both hotels, and were made to feel like guests experiencing the high standards of customer service they receive.”

They added: “The bedrooms in both hotels were amazing and we were impressed with their attention to detail – especially the personalised soft toys for children.”

Lucy McNicholas, hotel management tutor at Suffolk One, said: “The TA Hotel Collection gave us as a great opportunity to see hospitality in action and, in particular, witness how the White Lion ‘goes the extra mile’ for its guests.

“This hotel has a special attitude to customer service by doing the ‘White thing’, and this is what we will be bring back to the college in our assignment work. Our visit to the Brudenell was also very beneficial enabling us to compare the two different hotels with each other.”

Peter Osborne also agreed to meet the students again for a more in depth presentation and discussion on customer service, explaining why the hotels are so successful and giving examples of excellent customer service that he has experienced during his career in the industry.