The famous Baccarat Hotel in New York City is one of the city’s most glamorous hot spots. Something that one can’t help but notice is all the glass on show. Stepping into the lobby, one is immediately struck by the sight of chandeliers, crystal vases, and glass lamps.
Even the hotel bar is a step above most venues, with cocktail costing up to $450 per drink.
But what really separates the Baccarat Hotel apart from its competitors is the fact that everything is for sale, for the right price. The purchasing concept, which will begin next month, is a simple one. Should something catch your eye, you can order it. You can add everything from the glassware your drinks come in to the $216,600 chandeliers in the entrance to your bill.
How to order crystal items from the Baccarat Hotel:
In order to avoid appearing gimmicky, Baccarat has been beta-testing their technique for months now and they think they’ve found the solution.
The basic premise is that when you sit down in the lounge for drinks, tea, or your evening meal, you’ll get two menus. On one will be the high-end food and drink that you’d expect in such a luxury establishment. The other will have rather less elible fare – crystal. Hermann Elger, chief operating officer, says the conversation will go something like as follows:
“The server will take your food and drink order, and then ask, ‘May I take your crystal order?’”
There’s also a full 88 page custom catalogue, should guests wish to learn more about the crystal. The catalogue will contain information about manufacturing and the histories of a particular designs. There’s even a ‘crystal ambassador’, Florian Casanova, who serves as a maitre’d at the hotel. He underwent additional training courses to learn answers all crystalline questions.
The crystal purchases will be added to the diner’s bill. The hotel will then ship your item to a location of your choice in a Baccarat red box.
Are there any limits to what you can purchase?
Officially, there are 180 items in the hotel’s catalogue but Elger told Bloomburg Pursuits that ‘everything is potentially for sale’, for the right price.
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Unfortunately, however, there are some limitations to purchases. You cannot buy the exact crystalware that you used at the hotel. All the items you buy ship from Baccarat’s New York flagship store, not the hotel itself. This means that you’ll buy an identical version of the glass you used, not the same physical piece.
Ultimately, that’s somewhat disappointing, especially for those who’d like to take home the exact champagne glass they were drinking from when their fiancé proposed, or another nostalgically-charged piece of memorabilia from their own experiences.
Still, Elger explains:
“We’ve done some of our largest sales at 10:30 at night on a Sunday. The chance that a guest is still going to be in the mindset to make that kind of a purchase [at our flagship store] the next morning? It’s not so likely.”
Clearly impulse purchases are the order of the day here. That certainly suggests that, in future, the hotel might be tempted to part with its own stock if it drives orders.