Valentinstag Im Breidenbacher Hof

Valentinstag 2

Ich liebe unsere Persönlichen Assistenten hier im Breidenbacher Hof, A Capella Hotel.  Es gibt nichts, was sie nicht können!  Wenn ihr Hilfe beim Shoppen braucht,  können sie Eure Shopping Assistenten sein.  Wenn ihr nach Action sucht,  werden sie Eure Event Manager und für Euch unvergessliche aufregende Erlebnisse planen.  Und wenn ihr Romantik in Düsseldorf sucht,  spielen unsere Persönlichen Assistenten gerne Euren Amor!  Ihr braucht einen Beweis?  Dann last mich mit Euch eine wirklich romantische Geschichte von einem Pärchen erzählen,  das die letzten vier Valentinstage mit uns verbracht hat.

Die Geschichte beginnt vor vier Jahren.  Wie gewohnt kontaktieren unsere Persönlichen Assistenten die Gäste vor Anreise,  um zu fragen,  ob etwas für sie vorbereitet werden darf.  Der Mann erklärte,  dass sie für ihren Aufenthalt nichts Besonderes benötigen, sie seien nur da, „um den Valentinstag zu feiern“.  Naja, es gibt kein „nur“ im Vokabular unserer Persönlichen Assistenten und sofort ging die Planung los,  wie man dem Paar einen unvergesslichen Aufenthalt bescheren könnte.

Valentine's Day At Breidenbacher Hof

Der Plan war perfekt:  Die Persönlichen Assistenten entschieden sich dafür, das Zimmer des Paares in einen perfekten romantischen Rückzugsort zu verwandeln.  Sie verteilten Rosenblätter im ganzen Raum – vom Flur bis zur Badewanne.  Champagner,  Erdbeeren mit Schokoladenglasur und ein Kuchen erwartete das Paar. Für romantische Musik war natürlich auch gesorgt.  Es war wirklich das perfekte Arrangement für einen romantischen Valentinstag.

Wie zu erwarten,  war das Paar bei seiner Anreise verblüfft und zwar so sehr,  dass sie seit diesem Jahr immer wieder zurückkehren,  um den Valentinstag im Breidenbacher Hof zu feiern.  Jedes Jahr suchen die Persönlichen Assistenten nach neuen Möglichkeiten die beiden zu überraschen und zu begeistern.

Capella Singapore’s Peranakan Experience

Traditional Peranakan beading work.

Last week I had the opportunity to accompany one of the Capella Singapore Personal Assistants on a trip to the Peranakan museum as part of the new Peranakan Experience that we have created for guests who would like to explore the local Singapore culture.

Part of the tour took us to the Peranakan Museum, which showcased decades of age-old Peranakan culture and history.  For those unfamiliar, the Peranakan culture evolved from the early Chinese and Malay settlers in colonial Singapore and Malaysia who intermarried resulting in an exotic blend of cultures.

One thing I found particularly interesting was the strong matriarchal tendencies among the Peranakan.  While the men were the sole breadwinners for the family, the women, known as Nonyas, stayed home and ran the household.  As a result, one of the unique traits of Nonya women is that they are skilled in the culinary arts and crafts that distinguish the culture.  Luckily for me, I had the opportunity to experience both these luxuries.

Following our tour of the Peranakan Museum, we headed to a near by Peranakan restaurant.  The cuisine, while employing many traditional Chinese preparations, is extremely unique in its flavor profile.  We tried everything from a Fish Head Curry (not nearly as mad as the name suggests!) to Kueh Pie Tee, which featured shredded bamboo shoots and shrimp inside mini pie shells.  The flavors were exotic and bold and the dishes beautifully presented.

Traditional Peranakan beading work.

Traditional Peranakan beading work.

From there we headed to a shop run by a Peranakan woman, who still creates the traditional beaded shoes as well as selling beautiful kebayas.  Like the food the clothing was also brightly colored and rich in ornate detail.  We were told that some of the shoes could take several months to make as each bead was sewn on individually.  The same held true for the blouses and sarongs, as even the most “casual” kebaya was intricately decked out in skilled embroidery. Truly an art form!

The Peranakan culture is truly a significant part of the Singapore culture and something you really must experience for your self.  The next time you are at Capella Singapore be sure to ask your Personal Assistant for the Peranakan Experience.  I am sure you will love to learn about the history, culture and food just as much as I did!

Get To Know Capella Pedregal Personal Assistant, Marina Masclef

Marina 2

Every Capella Pedregal guest can confirm that our Personal Assistants have the best office!  Open air, waterfalls and the endless views of the Pacific Ocean are just some features of their office environment.  I had the pleasure of sitting in their office while talking with our new Lead Personal Assistant, Marina Masclef.

Capella Pedregal Personal AssistantMarina, I am so excited to sit down with you! Tell me, what brought you to Cabo San Lucas?
Originally, I am from Argentina. I always loved traveling and have visited many places around the world. I guess that’s why I love my job so much; I love helping create wonderful holidays for fellow travelers. When I first arrived, I was planning to stay in Cabo for one year, but this is already my 7th year here and I love it as much as the day I arrived.

What are your favorite things about Baja?
I am in love with Baja.  I love the climate, landscape, food and people.  Even today, after 7 years, I continue discovering new places.  I am constantly surprised by Baja, which is not easy!  This morning I enjoyed a stand up paddle boarding trip at Land’s End, and I feel invigorated and ready for the day!  I said hi to a couple of sea lions at the arch, and met some pelicans, which are my favorite.  This is my favorite way to start a day in Cabo San Lucas!

You joined Capella Pedregal three months ago.  Can you explain what is a Personal Assistant, and what is the difference between a PA and a Concierge?
Absolutely!  While a Concierge is a person you usually contact to book an activity or a dinner reservation when you are already at a vacation spot, the role of a Capella Pedregal Personal Assistant is much larger.  Our goal is to create a personalized experience for our guests, and help them create memories of a lifetime.
We contact our guests two weeks prior to their arrival, and find out any details about their stay; be it a relaxing vacation, upcoming marriage proposal, honeymoon, anniversary, birthday celebration or even business trip.  Based on this information, we suggest and help organize different activities; from spa treatments, cooking classes, tequila or wine tastings, outdoor activities, transportation and more.  Throughout their stay, my team and I are constantly available to our guests making sure to provide them with superior services and experiences.
I love finding new ways to surprise and charm our guests.  Once we created a romantic treasure hunt that ended with the future groom on bended knee.  Another time, in celebration of a young guest’s birthday, Patrick (one of our PAs) had a piñata specially made in the shape of a Lightning McQueen.  And a third guest received a special wake up call in the form of a mariachi band on his birthday.  These are just some of the many memories we cherish with our guests.

Capella Pedregal Personal Assistant 2And finally, tell me a bit about the Capella Pedregal Personal Assistant department.  What are your plans?
My goal is to become the best department at the resort.  I believe I have the best team and many of them have been here since Capella Pedregal opened.  We have eight Personal Assistants who cover both the hotel and our Capella Pedregal Residences.
We are constantly exploring new activities, working with other departments to create special memories and activities based on the interactions we have with our guests.  I encourage training as well, so each team member participates in the activities that we offer both at the resort as well as outside adventures.
From here the sky is the limit, which is good because as a brand Capella’s standards are celestial.

Surfing Southern Baja

Surfing in Southern Baja 1

Surfing Southern Baja is a favorite pastime of visitors and locals alike.  Especially in spring, when the wind combines with the currents to create the prefect conditions to take (or rent) your surfboard and head into the water.

There are several surfing spots in Baja, but some of the favorites are Acapulquito and Cerritos beach.  Both beaches offer waves for beginners as well as for experienced surfers.  After work you can often find some of my colleagues at the Acapulquito Beach in San Jose del Cabo, just 20 minutes from Capella Pedregal.  This is a perfect beach for beginners.  The waves break here from mid-March through September, although with proper weather conditions you can surf all year long.

Surfing in Southern Baja 1

My personal favorite is Cerritos Beach. While it is slightly further from Capella Pedregal at a 45 minutes drive, it is just a couple of minutes from the village Todos Santos.  Cerritos is a world famous beach not just for fantastic surf all year long (experienced surfers will like the break best from October to March), but also for miles of sandy beach and a beautiful location for swimming and spending the day with family and friends.

If you like surfing, or have always wanted to learn to surf, but never dared to try, a visit to Los Cabos makes for the perfect opportunity!  Surfing trainers in Baja will have you standing on your board in less than a day (I promise!).  When planning your stay at Capella Pedregal, contact your Personal Assistant, who will be happy to organize a surfing day for you.

Surfing in Southern Baja 2

Photo credits:
1.  Costa Azul Surf Shop:
2.  Your Capella Pedregal Insider

Surfeando En Baja Caifornia Sur

Surfing in Southern Baja 1

Surfear en Baja California Sur es uno de los pasatiempos favoritos de visitantes y locales por igual. Especialmente durante la primavera, cuando el viento se combina con las corrientes para generar condiciones perfectas para tomar (o rentar) tu tabla de surf y meterte al agua.

Hay varios sitios para surfear en el Sur de la Baja, pero algunos de los favoritos son Acapulquito y la playa de Cerritos. Ambos sitios ofrecen tanto olas para principiantes como para surferos más experimentados. Después de trabajar, comúnmente puedes encontrar varios de mis colegas en la playa de Acapulquito en San José del Cabo, a sólo 20 minutos de Capella Pedregal. Esta es una playa perfecta para principiantes. Las olas rompen desde mediados de Marzo hasta Septiembre, aunque con las condiciones propicias puedes incluso surfear ahí durante todo el año.

Surfing in Southern Baja 1

Personalmente mi favorita es la playa de Cerritos. Aunque está un poco más retirada de Capella Pedregal, a unos 45 minutos en coche, está a tan solo un par de minutos del pueblo de Todos Santos. Cerritos es famosa mundialmente no solo por su fantástico surf durante todo el año (los surfers más experimentados prefieren las olas de Octubre a Marzo), pero también por una hermosa ubicación y varios kilómetros de playa donde nadar y pasar el día con la familia y amigos.

Si te gusta el surf, o siempre has querido aprender a surfear, pero nunca te has atrevido, una visita a Los Cabos es la oportunidad perfecta! Los entrenadores de surf de la Baja te pondrán sobre tu primera ola en menos de un día (Se los prometo!). Cuando planees tu estadía en Capella Pedregal, contacta a tu Asistente Personal, el cual estará más que feliz de organizarte un día de surf.

 Surfing in Southern Baja 2

Crédito de la imagen:
1. Tienda de Surf Costa Azul
2. Capella Pedregal Insider

Der Gerahmte Kölner Dom


Ein unvergleichliches Gästebeispiel hat einer unserer persönlichen Assistenten, Malte, mit mir geteilt. Und zwar hatte eben dieser Gast zum ersten Mal einen Aufenthalt bei uns im Breidenbacher Hof gebucht, zudem sein erstes Mal in Düsseldorf und der größeren Umgebung sein. Da er besonders an kulturellen und historischen Sehenswürdigkeiten interessiert war – vornehmlich Kirchen – fragte er, ob er von seinem Zimmer aus den Kölner Dom sehen könne. Daraufhin informierte ihn Malte,  dass gut 40 Kilometer zwischen den beiden Metropolen lägen und dies leider nicht möglich sie.

Stattdessen bot ihm Malte an, eine geführte Tour für ihn arrangieren – dieses Angebot nahm der Gast dankend an. Dennoch ließ Malte die spürbare Enttäuschung des Gastes keine Ruhe, so dass er überlegte, wie er ihm eine Überraschung während seines Aufenthalts bereiten könnte.

Er suchte nach einem Bild des Kölner Doms, druckte es aus und rahmte es. Am Anreisetag des Gastes platzierte er das Bild zusammen mit einer Notiz auf dem Nachttisch: „Jetzt können Sie den Kölner Dom jederzeit sehen“.

Als der Gast das Bild in seinem Zimmer vorfand, machte er sich sofort auf den Weg zu Malte. Völlig überwältigt von so viel Aufmerksamkeit bedankte er sich: „Vielen Dank, dass sie einen Aufenthalt in einem Luxushotel in ein wahres persönliches Erlebnis verwandelt haben!“.