City council urged to see first-hand what St. James is like

Published 5:02pm Friday, August 16, 2013

Martha Stewart has always recommended to those who have guest rooms in their homes, to stay in their own guest room at least once a year.

Staying in your own guest bedroom in your own house allows you to see and feel the room and a stay at your home through the eyes of a visitor. That rickety drawer handle makes itself apparent when you unpack your suitcase for your weekend stay and suddenly you notice the water in the guest bathroom does not get as hot. Maybe you realize the closet door hinge squeaks. But no matter what kind of lump in the mattress you discover, the best part about this Martha Stewart-recommended experience is that you now know what needs to be improved for your guests to have a great stay.

This Tuesday at the Selma City Council meeting the volunteers at the St. James Hotel, running the place until the city finds another management company, issued a challenge to all council members and the mayor.

Nancy Smith and Patty Sexton asked the council members to come and stay for a night or two at the St. James where they have worked hard to polish furniture, wash sheets and cook continental breakfast for whoever stops by that night.

It would be greatly beneficial for the city leaders who are making financial decisions about the St. James to stay one night with their families to get a bearing on what the strengths and weaknesses are of the hotel. It could also bring more constructive suggestions to the volunteers who want to make the hospitality experiences there seamless.

We want to go another step further past the council, however, and challenge residents to stay in the hotel — especially residents who have a stake in the community.

Business owners, restaurant workers and other city employees should pack their bags and head to one of the few riverfront hotels in Alabama to see what great things are happening there and pitch in ideas to make the place even better.


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