Alec Dalton - Lobby Talks Review

By chris fletcher

Alec Dalton - Lobby Talks Review

This blog series offers you a summary of our last Lobby Talks event. We’ll be including a recap of the event, along with exclusive insights and quotes that you can stick on your fridge to give you motivation.

Getting to know Alec, an Innovative and Proactive Individual  

In only 10 years, Alec has accumulated a fantastic amount of hospitality experience, having infused service science in his work with industry pioneers, including Marriott International, The Ritz-Carlton Hotel Company, and The Walt Disney Company. On top of this experience with more than one big name, Alec has co-founded the Hospitality Leadership Academy, guiding companies to design and deliver exceptional customer experiences.

Palace Hotel – a Luxury Collection Hotel in San Francisco  

We always start the Livestream with an explanation of the hotel lobby chosen by the guest; in this Lobby Talks, Alec Dalton picked Palace Hotel in San Francisco. 

“We’re in Palace Hotel in San Francisco, part of Marriott’s luxury collection and one of my favourite hotels. It’s a historic hotel originally built in the 1800s. Unfortunately, it was destroyed during the famous 1906 earthquake but it was rebuilt into this beautiful establishment in 1909.”  

Next, Alec ran us through his Career in 60 Seconds – check out the video below where he gives us a summary of his career.


Melatonin Overdose – Career Highlights   

The next section is called Good Day / Bad Day, where the guest describes a certain day that they remember in a positive way, and one in a negative way.   

“The best days I remember were being on property; to be able to experience the guest interactions first-hand, and also being in the corporate offices where I designed strategies and delivered programmes to provide amazing guest experiences. My worst day was when I had a back-to-back shift. I finished at 2 am while having to start the next day at 7 am. I took too much melatonin and couldn’t quite remember everything that happened the next day but the team was successful and I made it out in the end.”  

Miami Beach Edition – Last Day on Earth  

The premise for this section is imagining that the world is ending tomorrow, but you have VIP access to any hotel, restaurant or event. Where would you go and what would you eat?  

“In terms of hotel, my go-to is the Miami Beach Edition Hotel on South Beach. It’s beautiful and one of the managers there was my former boss at the Ritz Carlton. A beautifully designed hotel in a historic building. Restaurant-wise, I would go to Alinea in Chicago, which is one of the best restaurants in the world. The guest experience is out of this world and there is a refined and consistent approach to delivering innovative dishes with amazing service. One event that is on the top of my list is the Burning Man Festival in the USA. It’s a futuristic, semi-utopian event where a lot happens that is unplanned.”

Burning Man is based in Black Rock City, a temporary city that is created for the duration of the event. Everything is possible as long as you respect the community’s rules. The guidelines are rigid and include the following: the use of money is forbidden, barter or donation is the only form of exchange. You have to be self-sufficient, bringing with you food, water and even electricity. There are no stores except for those that sell ice and coffee. Civic and environmental responsibility is another very strict rule of this festival. Participants have a handbook at their disposal that details the principles and ethical aspects which need to be followed during the festival.

The Guestbook  

Alec shares his words of wisdom and advice.   

Key Takeaways

Think about your career in different phases – in each phase, what would you like to achieve?

Learn from other people who have taken different routes.

Don’t be afraid to seize opportunities.

It’s important to have fun in what you do.

The Checkout  

A huge thank you to Alec for sharing his knowledge and experiences with us.   

If you missed the Livestream and would like to watch it, here is the link: [Lobby Talks – Alec Dalton]