The Big Tipping Debate

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October 29, 2014

TiporNotIn case you haven’t been paying attention, there is a BIG debate going on about tipping. Should you or should you not tip your server? In either case, does the server deserve to be tipped? If so, how much? If not, do you do it anyway?

Scenario 1: OMG! You got the worst service ever while eating out.

Scenario 2:OMG! You got the absolute best service while eating out.

Scenario 3: OMG! Your service was right in the middle. It wasn’t bad, by any means, but it was not the greatest, either.

What to do?

Scenario 1: Absolutely NOBODY likes to pay their hard earned money only to Badservicetipreceive shoddy service from the restaurant staff (manager, server, bartender, etc.). If you do, please let us know because it’s totally unheard of and we want to acknowledge you for being different. Anyway, you receive shoddy service and wonder if you should still leave a tip. After all, tips are how today’s servers make money so they can pay their bills. However, where is the line drawn? Should they be rewarded for less-than-stellar service? Do you even bother to leave a bare minimum?

CrazyTipScenario 2: You just got the best service of the year! You absolutely feel your server deserves a tip. But, how much? 15%? 18%? 20%? Some restaurants have 22% as on option. Do you follow the “guidelines” or do you tip however you feel? Or, do you even tip at all? Even with great service, people tend to still not tip at all. Is that fair?

Scenario 3: Eh, service was just okay. You weren’t disappointed but you weren’t blown away, either. What do you do? Do you just leave the standard percentage of the tip and keep it movin?

Here’s another twist: should restaurants be forced to pay their employees the standard minimum wage, like everybody else, and not one set aside for the restaurant industry? According to the United States Department of Labor, “The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) requires payment of at least the federal minimum wage to covered, nonexempt employees.  An employer of a tipped employee is only required to pay $2.13 an hour in direct wages if that amount plus the tips received equals at least the federal minimum wage, the employee retains all tips and the employee customarily and regularly receives more than $30 a MinimumWagemonth in tips. If an employee’s tips combined with the employer’s direct wages of at least $2.13 an hour do not equal the federal minimum hourly wage, the employer must make up the difference.

Some states have minimum wage laws specific to tipped employees. When an employee is subject to both the federal and state wage laws, the employee is entitled to the provisions which provides the greater benefits.” (http://www.dol.gov/elaws/faq/esa/flsa/002.htm)

Check out these two articles on the subject:

http://www.thrillist.com/eat/nation/tipping-debate-pros-and-cons-of-tipping

http://www.lyvbh.com/2013/08/14/tip-sensitivity-training/

Should there be a tip sensitivity training or is the world simply overreacting? Speak up, America! Let us know where you stand on this very touchy subject.

Here’s one comment on the subject (name not revealed to protect privacy):

  • If you can’t afford to tip your server accordingly, don’t go out to eat. I hardly ever publicly bitch about my job because I’m thankful to have it. However, it is not okay to tip $10 on a $137 ticket, especially if you said I gave you EXCELLENT service. Rant over.

Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

If you would like to unearth more secrets that you need to know about your career or your next interview, http://www.diamondhospitalityblog.com is THE place to be. We also share hospitality & travel information, as well as uplifting & inspiring posts/stories. Subscribe to our blog and share it with your network. Visit http://www.diamondhospitalityservices.com to see what we are about. We are here to help and inspire!

Secrets Of A Frustration-Free Customer Service Experience

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October 27, 2014

customer_service_satisfaction_in_actionAre you driving your customers crazy with a clunky customer experience and antiquated approach to customer service? Here are three ways to combat this, ideas I suggest as a customer experience and customer service consultant to my clients when they sense growing frustration levels among their customers.

(Time is not on your side here: Clunky systems are becoming less and less acceptable in today’s marketplace; respect for and anticipation of what your customers want are the watchwords for a successful customer experience.)

1. Help Customers Find It For Themselves

Customers appreciate the ability to have genuine, meaningful contact with a company, especially if the company has empathetic, intelligent, empowered humans working for it. However, customers only want to be in touch with you when they need you, not when you force them to contact you because of bad process design and lazy systems implementation.

Customers don’t want to have to call you just to find out that their order has shipped; they want an automated confirmation. They don’t want to call you for your GPS address because your site only lists your PO Box. And they eventually will stop calling.

If you want word about you to spread, don’t let the word that spreads be how hard it was to find something in your FAQ’s—or to find your FAQs in the first place. You, in other words, need to be the expert here, providing expert information where the customer can easily find it, so they feel informed and at ease when they work with you.

Amazon.com obsesses over these kind of stupid inquiries from customers (note: the customer isn’t stupid for making the inquiry; a company is stupid if it’s forcing the customer to make the inquiry) and searches them out (the inquiries, not the customers) for destruction. Most elementally, they were the first well-known company to replace all the irritating calls you have to make to see if your order had actually been received with that instant automated confirmation that customers now all pavlovianly depend on.

2. Personalize and Curate Results for Your Customers

Apple’s personal assistron, Siri, may seem like a bit of a toy, and certainly has her limitations, but she’s good at finding the question within the question: I tell Siri “I have a headache,” and she comes back with “I have found 4 drugstores not too far from you.” (One time she responded “I found 8 emergency rooms not too far from you..” “Siri,” I retorted, with some dismay, “Isn’t that a bit alarmist? I don’t think it’s that bad a headache.”)

While Siri seems like a bit of a novelty act, she’s one of the most visible (make that “audible”) manifestations of an important phenomenon that is well on its way to customer-service-badtransforming customer service: the trend toward, and desire on the part of customers for, information that is electronically curated for them in a personalized manner, and is delivered to them instantly.

Here are some examples, ranging from the mundane to the literally lifesaving, from which you may find inspiration.

Amazon.com (again with the Amazon, Micah!)’s magic mix of crowdsourcing and algorithmic magic that allows it to know the item you want to buy (even if it’s not the one you thought you wanted)

Route Happy — sorts air travel options for you based on a “Happiness Score,” which in their words reveals “shorter flights with better planes, seats, amenities, and flyer ratings”

PECO Energy in Pennsylvania: Automated messaging system lets customers know—based on phone they call in from – if problem has already been reported or if it needs customer to provide more details—and lets you know how long until it is resolved

National Weather Service’s pinpointed “stay inside” messaging vs. searching weather underground etc: this can (at least this is the intention) be pinpointed as closely as the nearest cell tower to ensure you don’t get extraneous messages or miss the one that will save your life.

3. Get to Customers First–Before They Know They Need You

customer-firstA third master skill of creating a great customer experience and superior customer service is what I call “Get To Them First” customer service. For a quick discussion of the “Get To Them First” subject, please check out my recent Forbes.com article: “Become Irreplaceable Through ‘Get To Them First’ Customer Service”

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Do you have any suggestions to add, based on your own experience(s)? We would LOVE to hear about them in the comment section below!

Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

If you would like to unearth more secrets that you need to know about your career or your next interview, http://www.diamondhospitalityblog.com is THE place to be. We also share hospitality & travel information, as well as uplifting & inspiring posts/stories. Subscribe to our blog and share it with your network. Visit http://www.diamondhospitalityservices.com to see what we are about. We are here to help and inspire!

About the Author

Micah Solomon is a customer service consultant, customer experience consultant, keynote speaker and the bestselling author most recently of High-Tech, High-Touch Customer Service.

The Atlanta World Kite Festival & Expo

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October 25, 2014

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Looking for your childhood? Well, I do believe we found it! Come on out and have FUN while supporting a great event: The Atlanta World Kite Festival & Expo!

Let me tell you…Our lovely boss, Ms Erica A. Rucker, LOVES flying kites, especially at the top of Stone Mountain, where the wind is normally pretty strong! Look closely and you’ll see the spec that is her kite!

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Visit the website for all the details, BUT it’s from 1-6pm at Piedmont Park, in Atlanta. There will be food, contests,  entertainment, and so much more!

http://www.atlantaworldkitefestival.com/

Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

The Coolest Hotel in Every State

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October 24, 2014

201410-hd-thrillist-coolest-hotelsUnless your name happens to be Arthur Fonzarelli (in which case, that’s crazy!), it’s hard to define the word “cool”. And even harder to apply the label to hotels, when “cool” could mean historic, or trendy, or that the place is actually a decommissioned Coast Guard helicopter with a full-service bar… in your room!

But since we’re not above doing hard work, we tried to figure out just how each state would define cool, and then applied that spirit to their hotels. In the end, we came up with what we think is each state’s coolest, most emblematic hotel. Or we were wildly off. You decide.

2014-10-16-CoolestHotelsEachState_2-ALAlabama

The Battle House Renaissance Hotel & Spa
Mobile, AL

Credit: Battle House

With a badass name like The Battle House, you’d assume this place was some sort of Confederate headquarters during the Civil War. Turns out that while the historic hotel was indeed open during the war, it got the name from its founder, a guy named James Battle. Mildly disappointing, indeed, but it doesn’t make this spot — where Stephen Douglas stayed when Lincoln whipped him in the election of 1858 — any less awesome; the interior will make you feel like you’ve time-traveled back 150 years.

2014-10-16-CoolestHotelsEachState_3AKAlaska

Ultima Thule Lodge
Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve, AK

Credit: Ultima Thule Lodge

It’s Alaska, so you know we’re not gonna tell you about some swanky joint in Anchorage with a killer brunch buffet. No, we’re gonna tell you about this luxury lodge that’s 100 miles from the nearest road, and only accessible by private plane. Here you’ll sit in the middle of the largest swath of protected land on the planet; you’ll hike, fish, and boat while your hosts spend the day cooking an epic meal that you’ll eat in a dining room full of oversized chairs, before retreating to your private, hillside cabin.

2014-10-16-CoolestHotelsEachState_4AZArizona

Shady Dell Vintage Trailer Court
Bisbee, AZ

Credit: Shady Dell

A lot of hotels will claim to “transport you back to another time,” but as soon as you flip on the TV and Real Housewives comes on, you become painfully aware it’s still 2014. Not so at this vintage trailer park, where not only have they adorned every trailer in perfect 1950s kitsch, but the radios only play music from that era, the TVs are black and white, and there’s nothing to read but words printed on old newspaper rife with cigarette ads. But don’t let the ads fool you; the only 21st-century advent at Shady Dell is a strict non-smoking policy.

2014-10-16-CoolestHotelsEachState_5ARArkansas

Beckham Creek Cave Lodge
Parthenon, AR

Credit: Arkansas.com

Don’t try to sound all “back-to-nature” when you tell friends you’re unleashing your inner caveman by staying in this lodge built into a real cave in the Ozarks. The place is actually a full-on house complete with Jacuzzi, five master bedrooms, satellite TV, and, oh yeah, a heliport. That’s one big cave. Obviously, Beckham Creek’s a popular spot for weddings, events, and celebrities who don’t want anyone to know they’re in Arkansas.

2014-10-16-CoolestHotelsEachState_6CACalifornia

The Queen Mary
Long Beach, CA

Credit: Queen Mary

We’re not really sure what else to say about this other than IT’S THE QUEEN FREAKING MARY. As in, the most famous cruise ship ever that didn’t crash into an iceberg. Yeah, that Queen Mary. And while this trans-Atlantic luxury liner from a bygone era now makes its permanent home in the LBC, it’s also a 346-room luxury hotel complete with a spa, shopping, and first-rate gym.

2014-10-16-CoolestHotelsEachState_7COColorado

The Stanley Hotel
Estes Park, CO

Credit: Facebook user The Stanley Hotel

Colorado’s got plenty of luxurious mountain resorts, but there’s only one so awesome it inspired Stephen King to write 200,000 words about it. This spot (named for the same guy who founded Stanley Steamer) is the hotel from The Shining, and while you might not run into a bartender who tells you to kill your family, there are enough rumored ghost stories in this place to make it a bonafide haunted landmark.

2014-10-16-CoolestHotelsEachState_8CTConnecticut

Winvian
Litchfield Hills, CT

Credit: Winvian

Try not to get the theme from Airwolf stuck in your head (because it will, GOD it will) when you check into this 118-acre resort in rural Connecticut, because of all their 18 themed cottages, the one you’re 100 percent going to stay in is the fully-restored 1968 Sea King Pelican HH3F helicopter. If somehow that’s not your thing, there’s also a log cabin, a treehouse, a greenhouse, and even something called the “secret society.”

Head over to Thrillist.com to check out the complete list of coolest hotels in every state, including a luxury treehouse and a former jail!

Come across any cool hotels during your travels? Well, by all means, let us know in the comment section below!

Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

If you would like to unearth more secrets that you need to know about your career or your next interview, http://www.diamondhospitalityblog.com is THE place to be. We also share hospitality & travel information, as well as uplifting & inspiring posts/stories. Subscribe to our blog and share it with your network. Visit http://www.diamondhospitalityservices.com to see what we are about. We are here to help and inspire!

The Reason Behind the Struggle of Not Making Money

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October 22, 2014

NadiasCornerMoney is truly an elusive topic for the best of us, and it is a topic whose psychology has always seemed to have fascinated me. Why do some have more than others? Why do we hear some people perpetually struggle ALL their lives, whereas some struggle and after a few years, they’ve “made it”, financially? It’s something the average person does not think about it and it is the very reason they are average.

Firstly, money is neutral however your beliefs towards it aren’t. If you are to make real money, make it an absolute point to surround yourself with people who are already generating it. The law of synchronicity applies here and simply because we are the sum of the five closest people to us. Money itself has it’s own laws, and until you really learn them, understand them and begin to rewire your mindset to always and consistently think like a wealthy person, you will be stuck in the poverty trap FOREVER.

Most people never ever make a substantial amount of money for themselves with freedom attached, simply because they have all sorts of stories going on in the background when it comes to it. money-blogSubconsciously, society demonizes money and it most definitely demonizes being rich as something that is synonymous with being arrogant, snobbish, elitist, proud and those who look down on others. Make no mistake; yes there are rich folk that do indeed behave this way because money is only a magnifier of what is in your heart, on a larger level. It is socially ACCEPTABLE to live in poverty, to struggle and just to “get-by”. When your beliefs are along the lines of “rich people are greedy and dishonest” as well as “money is evil”, your subconscious is going to do EVERYTHING in it’s power to keep you away from “evil” (read: money). It is a challenging position to be in and you will often find, most people will DEFEND their poverty mindset of “it’s never enough” because the broken record playing in their mind, is all they have ever known and should they continue on the path they are, will ever know.

People with a poverty mind-set will complain about literally everything under the sun because complaining is mental masturbation in their mind. It gives them the illusion that something is being done, whereas in actual fact, it’s like being on a rocking horse. Just because it has motion, doesn’t mean it’s going anywhere. If you are to make money, Deciphering-Your-Money-Mindset-04-22-2014you need to address all the ways you are blocking it by having beliefs of greed, avarice and confusing, conflicting beliefs of having it and then not having it. One of the biggest ways we block our abundance flowing to us, is by not keeping track of the money, how much is coming in and going out. Money likes to be adored and appreciated and if you are not doing so, it just won’t show up at your door.

A lot of us have this either or mindset. Like oh “I’d choose love before money” and wonder why they are broke. I chose both. Did you ?

Wow! What an OUTSTANDING article written by the wonderful Nadia Arain!!! We were very impressed with her insight and thoughts. How about you? What did you think? Agree? Disagree? Loved it? Hated it? Share your thoughts below!

Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

If you would like to unearth more secrets that you need to know about your career or your next interview, http://www.diamondhospitalityblog.com is THE place to be. We also share hospitality & travel information, as well as uplifting & inspiring posts/stories. Subscribe to our blog and share it with your network. Visit http://www.diamondhospitalityservices.com to see what we are about. We are here to help and inspire!

 

~About the Author~

Nadia Arain is a Heart Centric Business Woman and Spiritually Conscious Entrepreneur who is a partner in dynamic growth for Spas and Salons by using life and spa liberation to catapult your lifestyle from AVERAGE To AMAZING. She is a previous day spa owner, Published Author, Business Mentor and Copywriter, Founder of The Spapreneur Consulting : For the discerning Spa/Salon owner looking to upgrade into Spapreneurship–a magical land of ever flowing clients, windfall wealth and life liberation. Her published titles include The 21st Century Spartanite, Spa Marketing Success and His Commitment Blueprint.

Discover more of her magic for your spa at http://www.the-spapreneur.com today.

 

The Customer Service Manifesto: 10 Steps to Win Over Customers & Clients

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October 20, 2014

Always wanted to know the secrets to winning over clients and customers? Well want, no more! We have put together an invaluable slide show on just how to do that very thing! It is definitely not rocket science but it does require a self-evaluation.

Check it out….

Are there other tips that could be added to the list? Let us know what you think! Like, share, comment below.

Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

If you would like to unearth more secrets that you need to know about your career or your next interview, http://www.diamondhospitalityblog.com is THE place to be. We also share hospitality & travel information, as well as uplifting & inspiring posts/stories. Subscribe to our blog and share it with your network. Visit http://www.diamondhospitalityservices.com to see what we are about. We are here to help and inspire!

The 10 Best Airport Terminals to Be Delayed In

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October 17, 2014

Top10Ok.
Picture this. You’ve been traveling all week and you are soooooo ready to go home, right? You worked hard or you played hard and now it’s time for you to chillax (that’s chill and relax, combined). You get to the airport, only to find out that your flight was either delayed or (GASP!) canceled. How do you feel about being stuck at an airport? Not great, huh?
Well maybe….just maybe……these 10 airports will convince you that it’s not such a bad thing after all!

 

 

 

Have you ever been stuck in an airport and came across an awesome terminal that could have made the list? Share it with us in the comment section below!

Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

If you would like to unearth more secrets that you need to know about your career or your next interview, http://www.diamondhospitalityblog.com is THE place to be. We also share hospitality & travel information, as well as uplifting & inspiring posts/stories. Subscribe to our blog and share it with your network. Visit http://www.diamondhospitalityservices.com to see what we are about. We are here to help and inspire!

At Your Service, Madam!

Hospitality Shero:

Has this customer service debacle ever happened to you? This is a very hilarious look at a real conversation with a phone representative. Share your story with us in the comment section below….

Originally posted on Peak Perspective:

Welcome to In A Jiffy Internet! You’ve reached repair services. For English, please stay on the line—para Espanol oprima nueve.

Tap. Tap. Tap.

121014jiffy

I have your phone number as 988-042-1414. If you’re calling about the account for that number, say yes, or press one. Otherwise, say no, or press two.

Yes.

Sorry. I didn’t hear that. I have your phone number as 988-042-1414. If you’re—

Yes. YES. YEEEESSSS!!! *1*

–Otherwise, say no, or press two.

*1*   *1*   *1*   *1111111*

If you’re uncertain as to the telephone number for that account, you’ll find it on the top right hand corner of your In A Jiffy Internet bill. Just say or type in the ten-digit number now.

Nine, eight, eight. Zero, four, two. One, four, one, four.

Sorry. I didn’t hear that. Let’s try that again.

*9 8 8 0 4 2 1 4 1 4*

I have your phone number as…

View original 1,098 more words

52 Places to Go in 2014

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October 11, 2014

Witness a city in transformation, glimpse exotic animals, explore the past and enjoy that beach before the crowds. Somewhere within this list, we are SURE you can find somewhere to visit before the end of the year is upon us! Take a look below….

capetown-15641. Cape Town, South Africa

A place to meditate on freedom,
and the creative life that followed.

When Nelson Mandela was incarcerated at Robben Island prison, he found inspiration in Cape Town. “We often looked across Table Bay at the magnificent silhouette of Table Mountain,” he said in a speech. “To us on Robben Island, Table Mountain was a beacon of hope. It represented the mainland to which we knew we would one day return.”

Cape Town’s importance to Mandela, who made his first address there as a free man, will doubtless draw many visitors in the wake of his death. The country has transformed itself since Mandela’s imprisonment, but there’s still much to be done. Many in Cape Town have been grappling with that challenge, including its creative class, which has been examining whether inspired design can solve some of the issues stemming from years of inequality.

The city formally takes up that issue this year during its turn as World Design Capital. Cape Town is celebrating design in all its forms, putting on fashion shows by students and established designers alike, hosting architecture open houses, welcoming the public into artists’ studios and folding the annual visual arts spectacular Design Indaba conference, which took place in February, into the design capital program. Also part of the lineup are locals seeking to rejuvenate impoverished black-majority townships: The Maboneng Lalela Project turns township homes into galleries and performance spaces; Foodpods constructs sustainable farms, giving residents access to healthy produce; and the Langa Quarter project seeks to make the precinct a cultural tourism destination.

Cape Town is again reinventing itself, and the world is invited to its renaissance. — SARAH KHAN

christchurch-15642. Christchurch, New Zealand

The rebirth of a quake-ravaged city.

Three years after two large earthquakes devastated central Christchurch, the city is experiencing a rebirth with creativity and wit — thanks to the ingenuity of its hardy residents — and is welcoming tourists back again. Though much of the central city has yet to be rebuilt, entrepreneurs and volunteers are finding surprising ways to make temporary use of empty lots and bring life back to the downtown. The Gap Filler program, begun a couple of months after the first quake in September 2010 and expanded after a more destructive second quake in February 2011, has created a dance floor with coin-operated music and lights and even a nine-hole mini-golf course in vacant lots across the city. The Greening the Rubble campaign has since the 2010 quake been planting temporary gardens on the sites of demolished buildings. To replace the badly damaged 19th-century ChristChurch Cathedral, a magnificent transitional church by the Japanese architect Shigeru Ban opened in 2013 with sturdy cardboard tubes for the roof. Businesses are also trickling back downtown. One bar, built inside shipping containers, has a name that encapsulates the spirit of the entire city: Revival. —JUSTIN BERGMAN

3. North Coast, California

A glorious new preserve for the public.ncalifornia-900

One hundred and thirty miles north of San Francisco, the moody bluffs of the Mendocino Coast have long been a spectacular place from which to observe marine life: passing humpback whales, sun-happy sea lions, foamy waves strewn with kelp. The incorporation of the Point Arena-Stornetta Public Lands — nearly 1,300 acres — gives hikers new access to a contiguous 12-mile stretch of coastline and fields of wildflowers, cypress forests and cliff areas (some overlooking dramatic blowholes, pinnacles and sea caves), much of it previously off-limits to the public. And Congressional proposals to include the north coast lands as part of the California Coastal National Monument have passed, which means better protection and more funds for maintenance; plans also exist to extend the California Coastal Trail through the new preserve. — BONNIE TSUI

 4. Albanian Coastalbania-1564

On a rugged shore, Europe at its best.

What if you could combine the rugged beauty you’d find on Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast with the ruins of an undiscovered Turkey or Greece, all wrapped in the easygoing nature characteristic of rural Italy — at a fraction of the cost? Turns out you can, on the coast of Albania. The roughly Maryland-size country, between Greece and Montenegro, sits about 45 miles east of Italy on the eastern shores of the Adriatic and has limestone-ringed beaches, ancient ruins like Butrint and waterfront inns where you can stay for less than $50 a night. Rampant development threatened to turn it all to concrete in the years after Communism, but a new government took office in 2013 on promises of keeping the coast authentic. Head to villages like Qeparo, within sight of Corfu, where you can kayak past Cold War submarine tunnels, swim by abandoned forts and watch the tide rise during a dinner of fresh fish at an inn called the Riviera. This is Europe when it was fresh and cheap. — TIM NEVILLE

5. Downtown Los Angeles

Downtown? Really? Yes, thanks to a thriving food scene.

Gone is the musty, lifeless, only-open-for-Kings-hockey-games reputation of losangeles-900downtown Los Angeles. While the museums in this corner of the city are thriving (the Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art is nearby), the growing dynamism of downtown is the food scene. Most notable is the Grand Central Market, an arcade of over 30 of the best food vendors in the city. Originally built in 1917, the market has been redone in the past year, attracting popular purveyors like G&B Coffee and, soon, Belcampo Meat Co. Just down the street is Alma, which was named the best new restaurant in the country by Bon Appétit magazine. And where there is good food there is good shopping. Stores have added cachet to the neighborhood; an outlet of the fashion label Acne Studios opened in December, and Aesop, a skin-care specialist, in May. Diners and shoppers alike also have a hip place to stay: An Ace Hotel opened early this year. — DANIELLE PERGAMENT

namibia-15646. Namibia

Africa’s latest conservation success story is a boon for travelers.

Namibia’s communal conservancy movement, which pairs sustainable tourism with rural community outreach, has been a much-heralded success: In 2013, the country’s 79 conservancies received the prestigious Gift to the Earth Award from the World Wildlife Fund, and the stunning Namib Sand Sea Desert joined Unesco’s World Heritage list. Options abound for travelers who want to help the effort, including the Desert Rhino Camp, which Wilderness Safaris runs in partnership with the Save the Rhino Trust; the camp directly supports the conservancy, which has reversed dwindling rhino populations. Wilderness Safaris also plans to open the Hoanib Skeleton Coast Camp, on the Hoanib River in the north. And Namibia’s Tourism Board introduced three self-drive routes this year to point visitors toward less-visited parts of the country. — ADAM H. GRAHAM

See the rest of this awesome list here.

Have you been somewhere that you feel should have made the list of places to go in 2014? By all means, share them in the comment section below. We are always looking for new adventure locations!

Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

If you would like to unearth more secrets that you need to know about your career or your next interview, http://www.diamondhospitalityblog.com is THE place to be. We also share hospitality & travel information, as well as uplifting & inspiring posts/stories. Subscribe to our blog and share it with your network. Visit http://www.diamondhospitalityservices.com to see what we are about. We are here to help and inspire!

About the Authors

Produced by Alicia DeSantis, Jessie DeWitt, Lexi Mainland, Sona Patel, Josh Robinson, Dan Saltzstein, James Thomas, Josh Williams, Nancy Donaldson and Margaret Cheatham William.

Seasons change. And so will you.

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October 8, 2014

Welcome to Nadia’s Corner! Nadia Arain writes for Diamond Hospitality’s blog on a monthly basis and we’re sure she will delight you (as she’s delighted us!) with her charm, wit, intelligence, and knowledge. See at the end for her bio and be sure to visit her website. Please enjoy this latest article! ~DHSI

NadiasCornerMost of us seem to forget that in everyday life, and throughout the month, seasons change. We enjoy a long, hot summer filled with cold drinks and sleeveless vests, promptly arriving into autumn when the weather starts to turn chilly and crisp. Suddenly, we are reminded of our jackets, scarves and boots and hide away in warm coffee shops. We don’t get announcements that the weather is changing (aside the weather channel!), however we start to “feel” it.

We go out in our t-shirts and start to feel cold and think “Wish I had brought a jumper along…” and stuff along those lines. Eventually, conditions change and you dress accordingly. You really wouldn’t go out in a thick coat in the height of summer and in a strappy top when it is snowing, yet many of us do not seem to be fluid, flexible and ever changing attitudes when it comes to our own lives and especially in the arenas of romance and finance.

Financially, almost everyone including myself has experienced a lack, a dip or a flat out winter freeze, as I like to refer to it as—at some point of their life. And when we are in this mess laced with late bills, eviction notices and don’t even know where the next meal is coming from, it is normal to think that this is what life is and has become. However, one of the most important things to realise is that just like jackets come on and off during the year, there must be a season of hardship, adversity and challenges that shape us into what God desires us to become for the future.

It is futile to think that summer will never come because it’s currently December seasons-change1and your car is stuck in a mountain of snow. You know that as the months go by, spring shows up, trees start to bloom and then summer hits. You should have the same faith that when you surrender your shortcomings and painful experiences to God, He will never let you down. Your winter might be a little longer than others and really—everyone’s journey is different to the next person, however your winter will end. How do I know this?

Because for years, I was permanently stuck in winter, spinning my wheels. God sent the right people to me in order to help me overcome the adversity that I endured and undoubtedly, the same will happen for you.

Romantically, we can go year after year—relationship after the next without finding the right person however what we don’t realise that we have no failed relationships. We have life lessons when we look back in our retrospective silence, we would have never learned if that very person hadn’t done what they did. A lot of people give up hope on finding the right person, perhaps even months before they meet them. It has often been said that people give up and simply surrender by settling when they are closest to their biggest breakthrough in life.

counting-my-blessing

Just remember, winter definitely does not last forever. It is when we are tested the most to prepare us for our blessings.

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Let’s continue to shine, Everyone!

~DHSI

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About the Author

Nadia Arain is a Heart Centric Business Woman and Spiritually Conscious Entrepreneur who is a partner in dynamic growth for Spas and Salons by using life and spa liberation to catapult your lifestyle from AVERAGE To AMAZING. She is a previous day spa owner, Published Author, Business Mentor and Copywriter, Founder of The Spapreneur Consulting : For the discerning Spa/Salon owner looking to upgrade into Spapreneurship–a magical land of ever flowing clients, windfall wealth and life liberation. Her published titles include The 21st Century Spartanite, Spa Marketing Success and His Commitment Blueprint.

Discover more of her magic for your spa at http://www.the-spapreneur.com today.

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