Damian Barr – Raising the bar at Andaz

Last week I was fortunate to attend the University of Massachusetts career fair and in the process I got the chance to speak with recruiters from the Hyatt. A recent graduate came to talk to us fellow students to encourage our journey into the hotel world. One topic, among many were the several different brands of Hyatt hotels out there – the newest approach being the casual luxury brand Andaz.

This new friendly, personalized and laid back hotel has recently opened its doors in London and will be introducing a new concept into the hotel industry. Damian Barr was welcomed in to help encourage more artists and writers to stay and have a space to spread out and create. Prior to this agreement you might know Barr as a co-writer for plays on BBC radio 4, a regular writer for the Times, and a resident at the Royal College of Arts. Barr will be making not only room calls, but phone calls, dinner consultation dates, and book selections to others in the hotel. For more please read on to get a good grasp on this quiet interesting and brilliant idea:

Staring on April 14, Andaz will host noted writer Damian Barr as the hotel’s official Reader-in-Residence. To launch this new program, Damian Barr will live at the hotel for a two week period offering his services throughout the day and night. At the conclusion of his live-in, Barr will continue to act as the hotel’s resident Reader with sessions available upon request. Hotel guests will be able to book Damian to read aloud to them in their rooms choosing from a specially devised Book Menu.

There are no banned books: guests can also ask Barr to read anything they like. Or they can just book him for a private literary lunch or dinner in one of the hotels five restaurants and bars.

Over the phone or in person guests can consult Barr for what he calls ‘bibliotherapy’: “Basically I’ll talk to guests and find out what they love/loathe reading. I’ll diagnose their needs and prescribe appropriate texts: revive travel-worn senses with a sumptuous Georgette Heyer, enjoy a classy giggle with Nancy Mitford or some glamorous gangsters with Jake Arnott.”