I was sat in a bar on the corner of the Southbank in London – a very expensive area for real estate and any bar or restaurant along the bank is typically higher end. The result is that you already have an elevated expectation about the experience and of course the service component.
So we arrived as a group of six and headed to the front area outside, to be met by a “Maitre D” who asked if we were eating mains we said no but would be having drinks and may eat later. He then said “you can’t sit here” – even thought there was lots of space “you can sit down the side of the restaurant in the outside area go and pull some tables together”. So we couldn’t sit where we wanted and we then had to do the table organisation ourselves…so much for customer effort!!
Having done our own bar work and arranged the tables I was amazed to see that the tables were all adorned with fake plastic plants – they looked and felt v unappealing and were so not in keeping with the expectation – this was definitely a case of nothing would have been better the last time plastic flowers were in fashion was 3o years ago and I don’t see them making a comeback any time soon. Finally the tables they were using ‘down the side’ were metal fold out, cheap ones where each time someone leant on there side it tipped all the drinks their way!!
So great location terrible service and some ridiculous furniture and props.
The sad part about it was that as the early evening rush started the place filled up and of course if it is taking money there is never any incentive to resolve these problems…just like in any large Corporate 😉