SERVICE is key in any industry-Mario's is a great example!
I was at a conference on Luxury Real Estate recently. Of course it contained a lot of ideas on exemplary, high level service. Having said that, there was one other outside and amazing service example just down the street from the conference venue.
I used to work downtown-about 14 years ago. At that time, about once or twice per week, I went to a coffee shop called Mario's at Howe and Dunsmuir. Mario's is, as you might guess, run by Mario. It serves great coffee and is extremely busy. Over the past 14 years since leaving the downtown core, I have only made it to Mario's about once or twice per year. While I try to get there as often as I can, I am rarely downtown and when I am I often don't have time to go for coffee. I went to Mario's last week having not been there for about 10 months. Much to my surprise, Mario remembered my name AND that I drink a decaf Americano.....He also asked how a couple of friends of mine (one who hasn't been there in over 5 years) are doing.
Now I am someone who can barely remember the names of people I live with and who often forgets the names of past clients when I run into them (it is a horrifying brain flaw in this business!). The fact that Mario remembers customers and calls them by their names is great; remembering people who drop by twice per year-that's exceptional! Thanks a lot Mario for great coffee and great service!