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Warm welcome for Hotel Trident's first customer

December 21, 2008 16:35 IST

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'Thank you for you support' was the first greeting, besides loads of smiles and flowers, offered by Hotel Trident to one of its first customers in place of the usual bill as the hotel came back to life on Sunday after a hiatus of three weeks, following the bloody Mumbai terror siege.

"I was surprised when I got the card, saying thank you for your support, instead of the bill," said Devendra Ksheer
Sagar, the first customer at one of the restaurants of the Trident hotel.

Sagar used to visit Hotel Trident's restaurants after his morning walk at the Marine Drive [Images], along with his friends and guests, to relish a warm cup of masala tea.

"I had come here for my morning walk and since I knew the hotel was re-opening today, I decided to try my usual cup of tea. The staff told me that they were open today," he said.

In place of tense faces, Sagar was greeted with warm smiles and yellow roses as he entered the lobby.

"As soon as I stepped into the hotel, many managers walked up to me and shook hands saying 'thank you'. I was surprised on being told that I was their first customer. I was really touched by their gratitude," he said.

On whether he was worried about security, he shot back saying, "We should be bold enough to deter and stop them (terrorists). Instead of getting scared, we should scare them with our resolve to fight back."

The sparkling flower decked lobby, spotless floors and the warm smiles of the staff ensured that no traces of mayhem that took place last month are encountered by the guests.

The female staff, dressed in their trademark off-white saris matching perfectly with their blue blouses, along with the suited male staff, greeted every guest with a yellow flower as they stepped into the hotel.

Though everything looked as normal as before, the only difference was in the number of security personnel seen around.

All guests had to first undergo a thorough security check before being allowed in.

Trident Hotel president Rattan Keswani had earlier said that security had been beefed up both at the Trident and the Oberoi by way of multiple checks and the hotel has also joined hands with law enforcement agencies to improve security.

"We have gone to the experts to help us out. There would be surveillance systems, laser beams.There would be a large baggage scanner and we would not allow anyone to walk in without proper identification like a passport or a PAN card," Keswani said.

However, he pointed out that the hotel would still have a welcoming environment, in spite of the stringent security steps.

"It's not that a person would not be allowed to walk in into the hotel lobby or sit in one of our restaurants, even if he doesn't have a booking," he said.

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