The Brooklands Hotel is a striking example of modern architecture – by which I mean it’s all a little bit ‘airport’, both inside and out. This is not necessarily a criticism. Personally, I rather like Heathrow’s Terminal 5.
The hotel has received the accolade of one of the Sunday Times Top-100 ‘best small companies to work for’. As an ex-HR Director with first-hand experience of this award, I know this is no mean feat. Nor is it a meaningless bauble. The link between happy staff and happy customers is an obvious one, but for some reason I can’t fathom, it is often neglected in the hospitality industry.
Not at The Brooklands. The team here are clearly happy in their jobs and service is attentive and charming, with a genuine desire to please. I was relieved to find that the restaurant itself holds two AA rosettes. Restaurants in venues like these are so often disappointing.
This being an ideal meeting venue, the target markets are business folk and petrol-head tourists; Mercedes Benz World and Brooklands Racing Museum are on the same site. Our publisher, Maarten, somewhat of a petrol head himself, will be reviewing the hotel in full in a subsequent issue, so I’ll leave all the non-food detail and history to him (it’s really not my bag…). And so, on to the food...
We had a very promising start. We had met with the charming Italian General Manager earlier and Maarten happened to mention his fondness for Chablis. Lo and behold, as we were seated by the window, with fabulous views of the Mercedes track, a bottle of Chablis had been placed on ice beside us. A nice touch, and one that I assume epitomizes the service philosophy, listening carefully to customers and striving to delight and exceed expectations.