Thanks for Thank-You Notes

October 19, 2014

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Dear Thank-You Note,

Reports of your death have been greatly exaggerated. I wrote over 700 hundred thank-you notes last year, but we octogenarians can’t keep carrying the torch of proper etiquette. (Maybe torch is the wrong word when referring to notepaper.) I worry most about the Millennials. Everything is emailed or texted. 

Ah, but there’s hope in the form of Jimmy Fallon of “The Tonight Show.” I admit I don’t stay up late enough to watch him, but The New York Times wrote a story “The Found Art of Thank-You Notes.” It’s terrific humor. One example: “Thank you, Chris Christie,” Fallon writes, “for going back for seconds.” And I’d add, may be even thirds.

So, thank-you note, hang in there. Emily Post is still relevant. Proper etiquette is alive and well. Now, if someone could write in cursive.  Many schools aren’t even teaching it any more! I’m afraid the beautifully shaped letters with their majestic curves are going the way of the record player and the typewriter. Of course, I still have both. 

Your faithful practitioner,

Bill Marriott

P.S. Emily Post said this about the thank-you note: 

“It's always correct to send handwritten thank-yous, and people always appreciate them.  Handwritten notes are warmer and more personal than a phone call or an email, and only second best to thanking someone in person.”

I’ll even add, write a quick thank-you note to a friend today, and judge their reaction.  I’m Bill Marriott and “thank you” for helping me keep Marriott on the move. 


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Thank you very much

I would like to thank Lenore in Marriott Business Services, who was so professional and helpful when I was in need of a receipt for one of our employee's recent stay at your JW Marriott in Washington, DC.

Thank you!

Dear Marriot I wanted to take a moment to thank you and your professional staff at the Saddlebrrok Marriott in New jersey.Our family had a tragic loss recently and we were in need of a place to saty. Through a family member who works in the Marrriott in Philadelphia Pa. we were offered accomidations at the Saddlebrook Marriott in NJ. The Staff was excellent. Starting with the front desk, Mr. Bilal and continuing with the hotel support staff that made ever effort to help our family in their time of need. We would like to thank you and your entire organization for a rewarding and pleasurable experience.

I would like to thank food and beverage employee, Yenny and her supervisor, Adolfo, of the Aruba Surf Club for making our 11/1-8/15 stay enjoyable. Her smile and pleasant attitude made our day, every day.

I would like to thank-Frances. S,Heather- both housekeepers at the Marriott Courtyard for helping me with my luggage. The cart was hard to push and they went with me to my room . They were ready to finish their day but took the time to help me.

Also- Carla at the front desk is certainly is proud to be an employee of the Marriott. She provided great service.

We are Marriott owners and it's always good to feel valued at other Marriott properties.

Thanks Jean Wanrick

My sincerest thank you for your belief in military discounts at your hotels. We are a Navy family and we love and appreciate Marriott.

I have a serious idea for the consideration for your planning department in building your downtown hotel in Nashville. I believe a roof top entertainment area would be a unique and extremely valuable feature. The Peabody in Memphis makes great use of theirs, and the river view from your new site will be spectacular.

Best wishes to the Marriott family in the New Year.

Dear Mr.Marriot,I would like to thank-you for your kindness in helping me be able to continue bringing my daughter to RI for her much needed medical treatments.I received a very kind phone call from Alex at the Residence Inn Providence Coventry and may I say it brought me to tears.For as I'am sure you found on your journey with your beloved son Stephen it's very difficult financially and yet same as you I will do whatever it takes to continue to save my precious daughter Stacey's life for as long as possible.I feel very blessed truly very blessed to have found your blog for your beloved Son,for your posts truly help me to be strong and FIGHT,FIGHT,FIGHT to get her to the best doctors and treatment for all her medical issues now caused from her RSD/CRPS.Please know Mr Marriot,you have truly touched my heart truly.You lifted some of our heartache of worry for how long we will be able to continue taking Stacey for treatments in RI.The 89.00 a night for now until the summer months when prices go up is a huge relief for us.Stacey's treatments are not covered by insurance and are so very costly,having this lower rate is a blessing.I will continue to keep you and your family in my prayers and praise God for leading me to your blog for your beloved Stephen.Again thank-you with all my heart.Have a very Merry Christmas and Happy Healthy New Year.

Mr. Marriott's Thank you email of Dec. 5 has prompted me to do something that I have thought about at this time each year since 2011. So I do hope that Mr. Marriott sees this note to him.
On Dec. 9, 2011, I had reservations at the Fairfield Inn and Suites on S. Main in Wichita. I had stayed there a few times, and as with all my Marriott stays, always enjoyed it. However, on this night, I was in town (I live in Phoenix) under the worst of circumstances as my mother was in a Wichita hospital and likely terminal. I went straight from the airport to the hospital. When I reached my mom’s room around 6pm, I realized this could well be my mom’s last night and I decided to stay with her all night. I called the Fairfield Marriott to cancel my room, knowing that it was likely well-past the cancellation hour. The staff was very nice and allowed me to cancel my room without problem or penalty. I have always appreciated that; what I consider to be an act of understanding and kindness. That was, in fact, my mom’s last 24 hours.

I should have let someone at Marriott know at the time, because it would now be impossible to track exactly who the staff was. But I thought perhaps you would like to know that this is one of the many reasons why I like Marriott hotels, and that you have commendable staff.

Pam Thuillez

Dear Marriott,

Happy 17th Anniversary,

I would like to write about my stay at the JW Marriott in Buckhead, GA. It was fabulous. My husband and I was celebrating our 17th wedding anniversary (12/7). I had just enough point for a 1 night stay so I decided to surprise him with a stay at your hotel. From the moment we gave the keys to the valet our overnight began on a big note. The Front Desk Agent - Michael Douglas was superb. He had our room key waiting and escorted us to the elevator while pointing out various key points in the hotel. All of my preference were met by placing us on a high floor and not by the elevator. The room was very beautifully done. When I had a question Michel was quick to answer and instead of pointing to the mall entrance he walked us to it and reminded us to use our room key to reenter the hotel. I love a person that goes the extra mile to give excellent customer service. Just saying Happy Anniversary after hearing my name was a "WOW" moment for us.

Bravo - JW Marriott Buckhead! If you're ever in the ATL consider staying at this hotel it is connected to Lenox Mall.

Kathleen Gay

Mr. Marriott,
Thank you for allowing me this time to let you know of an 2 exceptional employees. You see it has been a rough last few months, my husband needs a liver transplant and he has been in and out of hospitals since early September and when we are able to finally get him a liver, our transplant will be taking place in Indianapolis at IU Med Center Downtown on the IUPUI campus. To begin it took me an hour on a local travel website to find an open room due to the Big 10 playoff commencing there were no places to be found. I made a call to one of your facilities when I was transported to the call center. They informed me the facility I was interested in was fully booked but in my frustration to stay with my husband that evening I believe I was more than a bit cranky(between my hubby's bad day, my inability to find a room and complete hunger) I simply blurted out listen since you work at the reservations center and not in Indy as I suspect it would not take that much time on hold to get someone in Indy can you find me somewhere...ANYWHERE on one of your properties to stay in Indy?!
She came back with a resounding yes. My prayers were answered. You see I called JW in Downtown but 400 per night is a bit more than I'm able to handle. I gave her my price range of 150 per night and she was awesome! Secured a room at your Indianapolis Carmel facilities at 149 for the night. Happy I asked about dining in the area and location information and again she was perfection. Gave me the info and armed with an emailed reservation while we were still talking I was able to get all the information I needed. Next I arrived at your facilities and as I walked in I was greeted at the desk by Jonathan. He was dressed very well, charming and all around nice guy. I gave him my name and he greeted me politely and asked me how my day was and I spoke very briefly noting "not such a good day, my husband is in IU Med with liver issues and its just been a bad day which makes it a bad day for me". He noted my overall tiredness and some other banter went back and forth but as he was checking me in he said "oh let me see if I can help. We have an IU Med rate and that will take your room down to 89.00 per night." I nearly crossed the line of good sense and good humor and leapt the counter to hug and give him a big smooch (I thought better against it -cameras in the lobby would only be embarrassing at your company Christmas party)but my friend Jonathan took it one step more in the MOST AWESOME EMPLOYEE OF 2014 AWARD - he handed me a piece of paper after he was done writing on it and said since you have had such a long day, this is for you to take over and get yourself any drink on me. I hope you enjoy your stay. That I did. Maria who cleaned my room did an excellent job (love the envelope for the staff -tipped her a bit of something) and used Jonathan's lovely gift to get a coffee the next morning.
I would greatly appreciate it if you could take some time to recognize Jonathan and let him know that what he did may not have made executive news, he may not get all the recognition I think he should receive but to let him know that on one night he made a difference in someone's life by creating a random act of kindness to one middle aged woman who greatly appreciated it. Thank you for your time and forum and keep up the great work!
Virginia Berger

Dear Mr. Marriott,

Thank you very much for your very nice note.

Marriott Properties have been my home away from home for many years! Nights at your hotels with your professional employees have been a joy to me. Many days of "tuff" business often turned into disappointments and challenges....but once I arrive at my Marriott Hotel...I was always at my Happy Place of refuge! Thank you for always providing properties and employees that are consistently At The Top !

I have imparted the importance/quality of Marriott's to my Son as well. As he travels, his 1st choice will always be MARRIOTT.
Thank you for always taking care of your guests and providing many wonderful memories, Bill Hill.

Just wanted you to know how good this employee is, I have never done this before but she is really going above and beyond. If you look at my profile you will see I travel a bunch and Marriott is my brand. By the way loved the CNBC program on you and the company!! I'm into old cars also!! So anyway I put the employee in for a service award and I hope she gets it!

Thanks Bill for making my second home so nice!!

Good day, I stay in Marriott’s all around the world and see many many employees but have never been compelled to nominate an employee before. So with that said I nominate Jessie D in the Executive Lounge of the JW Marriott (the older JW in Beijing) she is a new employee just one week into her new job. The enthusiasm this girl has toward the customer should be bottled. While other exe lounge employees texted on their phones and ignored guests (not all but some) Jessie went out of her way to always welcome me and even help me with my Chinese language skills. I also noticed that she was doing the work of two people maybe because she was new but very hard working always moving but still made time to engage the guest.

So with that I nominate Jessie D of the JW Marriott Beijing for the Spirit to Service Award. She is a new employee but an excellent example of a GREAT employee and one reason I will come back from this 10 day stay for a 20 day stay in January and so on and so on!

Best Regards,
Brian Glenn
Platinum Member

Dear Mr. Marriott,
I want to personal thank and give kudos to 2 of your valued employees at the Residence Inn Williamsport PA. Renee was a definite pleasure to work with and she went above and beyond her job to make sure that our family had just the right place to stay and that she accommodated all our needs. She was very patient and helpful. As a result we had a wonderful time during our visit to this Residence Inn. We were there on a very busy weekend making a college visit trip for our daughter and didn't know if we would have a place to stay. Renee and Holly one of the managers on duty during our stay made sure that we had some place wonderful to stay and that all our needs were taken care of. When one of your competitors failed to meet our needs both Renee and Holly came through for us. They gave excellent customer service and are very valuable employees to the success of your hotel. They deserve commendation for their service and dedication!

Mr. Marriott,
Being an associate of Marriott, I just want to let you know that there are still some Millenials(I being one of them) that appreciate the hand written letters and notes just as much as you do! It frightens me that cursive is being taken out of the school curriculum. It is definitely my favorite form of writing. Thank you for sharing!!

Dear Mr. Marriott:

I write this comment to give a huge THANK YOU and commendation for one of your most valued employees, Ms. Elizabeth Babatunde. My family was displaced for over two years due to a bad construction experience on our home. As we traveled around the Washington, DC area staying in different locations, the Marriott Residence Inn became our hotel of choice. Though we were long-term guests at the Waldorf, MD location, we constantly sought an arrangement that would put us closer to Washington. After much travel, the Largo, MD Residence Inn was built and opened. We were the first official guests at that hotel.

As with any new establishment, there are growing pains and "getting settled" items to complete. My wife and I were fully aware of the situation and we accepted the challenge. Though many concerns cropped up, there was one person who stood out above the crowd in assisting us and the other residents. That person is Ms. Elizabeth Babatunde.

When we first checked-in, she was there as a regular front desk. By the time we left (7 months), she had been promoted to become the Operations Manager for the Largo Residence Inn. Throughout our stay, she took the extra steps and time to make sure that we had everything we needed and always presented herself as warm, caring and professional. Even when we had a bad experience, Elizabeth made sure we were accommodated and properly addressed. This is the same sentiment shared by other guests as well. Elizabeth made our long-term experience that much more tolerable and enjoyable.

There are many choices we, as consumers, have afforded us to find lodging. It is employees like Elizabeth Babatunde that makes us stay loyal to Marriott Hotels and go out of our way to find accommodations within a Marriott property. Thank you so much for having Elizabeth Babatunde exemplify the high standards of professionalism and customer service that Marriott promotes. She is the best!


Everett Burwell and Trina Winfrey-Burwell

Mr. Marriott;

As an At Your Service Agent in my Boston Marriott, Burlington, MA, I love to send personal "thank you" notes to my Room Service guests. It is my unique way of letting them know what I look like as I include my photo, and let's them put a face to a name. I am truly "thankful" for their patronage and room service order and hope that they return to our hotel.

Duely noted!

Mr. Marriott,

I am a believer of Thank You notes as well. Whenever I give a bridal shower or a baby shower, one of the gifts for the bride or mother to be are enough Thank You notes to send to each guest to thank them for their generosity.
But then again, I am a baby boomer..............

Mr. Marriott,

I want to thank you for bringing up the thank-you notes!
Getting ready to write you a personal one by snail mail.
Best regards, Lynn Hafner

Mr. Marriott
Kudos for running a first class operation, I have used your service for 100% of my travels over the past 20 years. I have spent 5 years of my life at your hotels, why? Marriott has helped me as much as I have been loyal to them. I know many of your hotel managers, and all our first class and sensitive to the needs of the community. Marriott has been generous in donations to causes I champion. So as my mother told me about the depression neighbors help each other and that is the case here. If we help those who need help or help us the world would be a better place. I want to thank you and the Marriott family for their support of my efforts.

My career is winding down and I will be traveling less, feel free to use me as a reference as there is no bigger fan and loyal user of your services.

John kern

Glad you are still with us!!! Really miss you at the Marriott hotels, I use to see you in Crystal City Marriott And Key Bridge, I hope that Marriott Is in the best hands, are any of your children involved with the Hotels??

Hello Mr Marriott. I am living proof of the value of thank you notes. I saved the ones you wrote me and treasure them to this day. By the way, I attended the 25th anniversery celebration at the San Francisco Marriott Friday nite. 25 years to the day from the earthquake and remarkable opening day. I remember when you announced the SF Marriott and NY Marquis properties - in 1985 if I remember right - and the groundbreaking for the San Francisco Marriott in 1987. Your vision to go forward with these properties sure had been proven right. You would have been proud of the SF Marriott team Friday night. Over 200 charter associates attended. A success story with quite a history.

All the best

Hank Biddle

Mr. Marriott,

Please forgive me for this typed Thank You note, but such is the way of blogs. I want to "thank you" for reminding me that I am not alone in believing the handwritten note is the way to go. I love writing, as well as looking at stationary and notecards and pens that go along with the art! I do encourage my 3 grown children to send handwritten Thank You notes. I do regret though getting rid of my typewriter that my dad bought for me when I went to Utah State back in the 70's...... Thank You for being You...
Maureen Piazza

Thank you for honoring the 'Thank you Note" in a paperless society!

Well it is an age thing Bill. I am middle aged and even I do not have the time to appreciate it anymore. Every insurance agent and real estate agent writes me thank you notes every time I meet them - it goes into the trash almost immediately unfortunately. I would appreciate a 'Thank you' text tho'...or a tweet :).