Hotel Monthly - 2004 Issue 10

Fairmont Copley Plaza, Boston, Massachusetts, USA.
By Tara Jacobs

Outstanding first impressions are the hallmark of great hotels. At Boston's Fairmont Copley Plaza, guests are welcomed by a master of first impressions. Right outside the concierge desk, Catie, one of the newest members of the hotel staff, greets all comers with true sincerity in her eyes, a warm smile, and…a wagging tail.

Catie Copley is a two-year-old black lab, making her mark in the world of hospitality with her superb work as Canine Ambassador for the Fairmont Copley Plaza. From her office - doggie bed in the hotel lobby - she plies her stock in trade: a little touch of home to traveling pet owners.

“Many guests, whether they are traveling on business or pleasure, miss the companionship they receive from their own pets,” says general manager Jon Crellin. Since July 2004, Catie has been a smash with those canine-deprived travelers. Her human colleagues at the Concierge desk keep an appointment book that guests can use to schedule walks, runs, or just some quality play time with the Fairmont Copley Plaza's resident doggie diplomat. The walks are Catie's specialty. She was originally trained as a guide dog by the Guide Dog Foundation for the Blind, Inc., but she developed a minor eye condition. It wasn't serious, but it was enough to propel her into ambassadorial service, and doesn't at all get in the way of her official capacities.

Her duties keep her occupied six days a week, but when she's not posing for pictures and accompanying dignitaries on walks through her favorite spots in Boston's historic and picturesque Back Bay, she's relaxing at home in Malden, MA, with her best friend Jim and their family. Jim's the head concierge at the Fairmont Copley Plaza, so it's pretty easy for her to find a ride into work every day.

“Catie will be able to make guests feel more at home at the hotel,” Mr. Crellin continues. And coming back through the elegantly appointed lobby after a day of work or play and seeing that smile and friendly wag, you certainly do.

Whether you're exploring Boston with Catie Copley or bringing your own four-legged best friend to the very pet-friendly Fairmont Copley Plaza, the experience is tough to beat. The hotel's design and décor will take your breath away; the service is impeccable, and you're right in the heart of the best shopping, sightseeing, and amenities in New England. The Oak Room, located right near Catie's office, is the hotel's own award-winning steakhouse and raw bar and a great spot for a pre-theatre dinner. The Oak Bar is a great place for a specialty martini in an elegant setting after your evening's activities.

Like most public figures, Catie reads her email on a regular basis, so you can drop her a line at Catie.Copley@fairmont.com. If you'd like to get in touch with a two-legged staff member, or see more about the Fairmont Copley Plaza, you can visit their website at http://www.fairmont.com/copleyplaza.

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