Keeping in Touch with Family

Yesterday was Mother’s Day, and, embarrassingly, despite my age, I realized for the first time in my life just how important keeping in touch with family really is. Before yesterday, I hadn’t contacted my mom for nearly three years. I won’t get into the complications of why it had been so long, but I will get into detail about my revelation.

mother's day

My mom lives in Windsor Ontario with my step father where she spends her retired years gardening and painting landscapes. I decided to reach out to her because I regretted the arguments we had suffered in the past and I was surprised to hear how happy she was to hear my voice. We ended up talking for nearly 3 hours over the phone when I expected we’d only be chatting for 10 or so minutes.

Think of this as a quick, friendly reminder, because it’s a bit off topic compares to what we usually blog about. I’ll be grateful, however, if this message just positively impacts the life of one person who reads it. Oh, and here’s a funny Mother’s Day video you might relate to if you’re anything like me:

Moving on now! Basically, I came up with five major reasons why keeping in touch with family is important. Even if you despise some members of your family, these reasons should prove why it’s worth while to contact them at least once per year.

  1. You never know when property or business can be bequeathed by a dying family member.
  2. Hearing a family member’s voice reinserts the history of where you came from in your mind.
  3. There’s always the chance for new and exciting news!
  4. You never know when a family member is pregnant or already gave birth.
  5. It’s just common courtesy!

I don’t expect anyone to take my opinion on this matter as scientific truth because, to be honest, I still have a lot of work to do before I can be considered an expert at keeping family relations healthy. I just hope this little reminder adds a blessing to your life, because I never realized how much of a blessing family is to me.

Until next Mother’s Day, I love you, Mom!

Taking the Time to Upgrade or Repair Your Kitchen Appliances in 2020

A lot of us have more free time than we might want, especially those of us with empty restaurants to manage and operate. But, here’s another tip and piece of advice for us business owners in the restaurant industry to stay one step ahead of all the others who decide to waste this precious time. If you haven’t already innovated in the regard of offering take-out and food delivery like many restaurants I know have done, you can use this idle time to upgrade and repair your appliances.

working kitchen appliances
How much time would your kitchen save if all your appliances were of the latest technology?

Now, I know what many of you will say right off the bat: “How can I afford to repair and replace my commercial appliances if I can’t even afford to keep my staff employed?” And, the truth is, I can’t answer that for you because government funding and loan services are different from state to state and province to province. I’m hoping this post will be a resource for restaurant owners for many years after the pandemic is over, because in a bit I’ll be talking about the importance of upgrading and repairing your appliances when it comes to beating the competition and staying ahead of the times.

If do, however, have a previous post where I go more into depth about how a restaurant can deal with this pandemic more easily. Now, let’s shift to our main topic.

Preparing for Post-Pandemic Restaurant Business Success by Fixing & Upgrading Appliances

When business is back to normal, there’s no doubt that the restaurants who have used their time wisely during the lock-down will have a major advantage in the economy. Whether you’ve been planning a marketing campaign, have upgraded your tables and chairs, etc, you will attract more customers than the older restaurants who refuse to move with the times. And, so, if you’re expecting a flood of business after restaurants reopen because you planned wisely and carefully, then you must make sure the equipment you have in your kitchen is working in optimal condition and can handle the rush and abuse that a busy restaurant requires. After all, life isn’t an epic fantasy adventure, even though a serial killer might say it is. This is reality, and if you’re stuck using old appliances from the 1980s when young adults are entering the business and drubbing the competition because they have the latest industrial dishwasher that can wash every dish in their inventory in less than 20 minutes while you have to pay someone hourly to wash 20 dishes every ten minutes then sorry but you deserve to lose. Unless, of course, your food is better!

industrial appliance
How optimized is your restaurant kitchen?

To help explain the importance of having the latest appliances and how this will give you a significant advantage in the kitchen, let’s take a look at a domestic kitchen in Windsor, Ontario, Canada. There, I know someone who, for their whole life, had washed dishes by hand. The sad part was that they had a dishwasher in their inherited house the whole time; they just never bothered to repair it. Well, after I berated them over the phone some years ago, they finally got around to calling Appliance Repair Windsor and everything in their life changed. Just like how a restaurant would be able to operate much moire efficiently if they had a sophisticated dish washing machine, my friend in Windsor found himself with much more free time. Not only is he less sparing in the kitchen when it comes to cooking meals because he knows a machine will clean all this dishes for him, he uses all the free time that comes from not having to clean dishes by hand to do other things like take the dog out for a walk or check emails. Life for him has improved noticeably just from repairing one appliance and I know this effect will work wonders in your restaurant if you do the same.

So, if you have an oven that doesn’t heat up fast enough, a freezer that has a warm spot, a fridge that leaks water on the floor or simply an outdated appliance that’s wasting precious time for your busy kitchen, then seriously consider spending this precious time to handle the situation because the benefits will give you that special edge once the economy is on the rise.

And, there’s no doubt about it, the restaurant industry will be on the rise after the pandemic is over because so many people are sick of staying home. Just think of it. Now’s the time to innovate. Success is yours, and upgrading your appliances is just one way to get there.

What Can a Restaurant Do in Canada While it’s Closed Due to COVID-19

Today I want to share some good things a restaurant business can do while Canada is shut down during the COVID-19 epidemic. First I’ll talk about the financial resources available, but then I’ll talk about what I believe is even more important than finances–using this time wisely to break ahead of the competition and come out on top once the pandemic is over.

In Canada, many businesses are temporarily closed, especially restaurants. If you’re one of those businesses, you might want to check out Canada’s economic response plan. There are many new grants from provincial governments to keep funds coming in while your business is temporarily stalled. Also, there is Employment Insurance for your employees to take advantage of. These are things you can do financially while you wait, but what’s the best way to use your time once these things are done?

How to Come Out on Top as the Best Restaurant in Town Once the COVID-19 Pandemic Is Over

There are may things you can do to use this time wisely. And the best one, in my opinion, is using this idle time to work on your businesses. I believe there’s a big difference between “working in” and “working on” your business, and now is your chance to work on your restaurant and make it better. One thing you can start with if you haven’t already is create a theme for your restaurant. Sometimes, restaurants get famous and attract tourists from around the world just because they have a unique theme. There are Star Wars restaurants, Lord of the Rings ones, etc, and nows your chance to revamp your business with a theme that will catch craze and attention once the pandemic is over.

Another thing you can do is revamp your menu or do some extra cleaning. You could buy new tables, redo your art on the walls, etc. Use this time wisely while the competition is idle and you’ll come out on top.

Best wishes,

News Update: A New Author Has Joined the Team

Say hello to Sara! She will be helping us with content for all you lovely folks. She, like me, likes to write about restaurant life and appliances, so she’s a perfect fit. Some of our upcoming posts will be by her so make her feel welcome.

More info about Sara:

  1. She reads a magazine every day.
  2. She has two teenage sons.
  3. She lives in Saskatoon, SK.
  4. She drives a huge truck.
  5. She’s managed a hotel restaurant for over 20 years.

We’re so excited to have this amazing writer joining us, so stay tuned for upcoming content that’s perfect commercial appliance techs and restaurant owners. If you still wonder why this is our topic of choice, you can read about that here.

We hope you’re as excited as we are!

Opening a Restaurant in Saskatoon, SK

For the most part we’ve tried to keep this blog objective but I have exciting personal news that is worth sharing. I’ve always dreamed of opening a restaurant in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada because that’s where my grandparents live and I have a daughter who is willing to take over the ownership once the business is off the ground. So let me tell you about my plans.

I have much experience in working with hotel restaurants and hotels in general but I’ve never started my own stand-along restaurant before. It’s been a dream of mine for nearly a decade now and I even have a 6 step plan to make it happen.

sask

Here are my 6 Steps for Starting a New Restaurant in Saskatoon!

  1. Find a good location
  2. Come up with a good menu and theme
  3. Move to Saskatoon
  4. Buy a building, get menu printed, theme constructed and staff hired
  5. Get good relations with a local appliance repair company
  6. Turn the open sign on and start marketing

A lot of these steps are straightforward, and I’ve touched on step 5 before (getting good relations with an appliance repair company) in another post, but I want to touch on that and step 3 a little more. These are the hardest steps for me, surprisingly, but I’m making headway. Cheers to that!

I already have a menu ready, a menu of my own recipes, many of them gleaned from my experience working with hotels. I already have a theme in mind. I have family and friends there I can hire for staff, but so far the only things holding me back is the BIG MOVE and starting local connections.

The reason why I’m having trouble moving is because I’m anchored to where I am by business ties. I think if I work harder than I usually do for the next few months I can get those anchors untied but that’s only a maybe. And when it comes to finding a company that does emergency appliance repairs, which is important for a restaurant to have for obvious reasons, I’m at a loss because I don’t live there yet and I like to meet people face to face. There’s some good luck in this matter though because I chatted a bit with Appliance Repair Saskatoon and they said they’d be willing to do what I’m looking for. I’ll have to give an update on that in the future.

So now I know that this dream is in progress and will soon be a reality. It’s only a matter of time. This is so exciting for me and I can’t wait. I’ll miss everyone here in my hometown but they understand how much this means to me and won’t hold me back.

I wanted to share this because I know many of you out there have similar dreams and I thought seeing someone else pursuing theirs might help you get motivated to pursue yours a little harder. I’m thankful you cared enough to read this and if you want to stay up-to-date with this story then come back on my blog in a few months to see where things are. Cheers to dreams coming true!

A Little Holiday Story (Why You Shouldn’t Trust Reviews)

I’ve been meaning to share this story on here but couldn’t think of a simple way to tell it until now. I’m still practicing with taking complex ideas and narrowing them down into understandable narratives but here we go! This is another business tip that everyone can relate to.

So on Christmas Eve I visited a reputable restaurant with my friend Sally and learned that just because a business is reputable doesn’t mean the manager can change at any given moment and the place suddenly becomes the worst dining experience in the city. First of all my plate wasn’t even clean (had some brown crust on the side), my wine glass had spots on it and the waiter looked tired and overworked with bags under his eyes. Turned out the waiter was tired because he’d been working double shifts for nearly a week as the new restaurant owners had fired all the staff and left this poor guy to pick up the slack.

5 star review

On reviews I read that the menu had a lot of options and that the food was superb but when I got there the menu was printed on normal letter paper and only had a dozen options. I won’t go as far as to share the name of this restaurant because for all I know they’re going through rough times and things might turn around any day but there’s a moral to this holiday story I want to get deeper with.

DON’T TRUST REVIEWS ON THE INTERNET without actually going there yourself and getting your own opinion, especially reviews that are over a month old. I used to always trust reviews and chose my business thus. But now I’m going to start considering what my heart tells me because things change and I suspect, from my own experience, that businesses with lots of bad reviews can within a short course of time pick things up and actually be a great dining experience but no one will ever know if they only read reviews and never actually go there.

So that’s all I wanted to share on this post, but I’m working on another post that will come out tonight so stay tuned!

Does Your Restaurant have a Theme?

A theme when it comes to a unique experience is crucial, so ignore this if you don’t care about giving your customers something unique. At the end of the day, everybody’s got to eat and so a hotel restaurant only needs good food and working appliances to get the job done. But keep in mind your hotel restaurant won’t get a reputation for being something unique and cool if you don’t apply a theme that matches your menu. And by theme I don’t just mean a cultural tradition like Mexican. I really do mean something unique.

restaurant theme

What Do I mean by “Theme”?

I mean something more than a cultural tradition. Even if your restaurant has Mexican style, you can still have a unique theme in the layout of your furniture, staff outfits, menu design, table layout, etc. One example could be a Mexican diner with a 50s car theme. Have car seats to sit on with steering wheels hanging on the walls would be something a 50s car theme might have even for a Mexican diner.

Remember, the more unique the theme the better.

A List of Restaurant Theme Ideas

  1. Elephants
  2. Jungle
  3. Jazz Music
  4. Bikers
  5. Rainbows and Flowers
  6. Medieval
  7. Futuristic

What Makes a Good Appliance Repair Company?

Whether you’re just curious or you want to know the best appliance repair company near you to hire, today we’ll be discussing what makes a good appliance repair company. There are many factors but we’ll touch on the top three, which are:

  1. Reliability
  2. Affordability
  3. Professionalism

Arguably reliability and professionalism can be under one category, but there’s more to professionalism than just being reliable. For an appliance service business, you want them to dress nice if they’ll be working in your hotel where customers will see them, and so this means a lot more than just showing up on time. Also, reliability can mean quality, and so when the technician fixes your fridge you’ll be able to rely on the results.

appliance repair

To get deeper into this, you don’t just want your appliance technician to dress nicely and show up on time with reliable results, you also want them to be polite in case customers hear them speak. If they’re working in your hotel and smoking and cursing, this says a lot about the lack of their professionalism and will in turn make your hotel seem less professional. That’s why you really want to test the waters and read reviews before hiring a company because it makes a big difference for you and not just your broken appliance.

Sure, there might be a team of rude, poorly dressed appliance mechanics than can fix your broken dish washing machine faster and cheaper than the professional companies out there like https://www.reginaappliancerepair.com/ but that’s where our affordability factor comes in. You want a good balance between professionalism and affordability in a company because it’s not impossible to find a crew of technicians that not only act politely for your guests but also have low prices. The above-mentioned company in Regina is a good example of that.

Next, when it comes to affordability, this should include the cost of replacing appliance parts and getting a quote as well. Some companies may seem cheap but after the quote fee and the part replacement fee their original price can triple in cost! This is a part of doing business…

good business

At the end of the day, it’s up to you if you just want to hire the cheapest company you can, because hopefully they’ll get the job done and that’s all that matters for some hotel owners. But for me, I like to choose the good ones. And after all this has only been a discussion about what makes a good appliance repair company and not which ones you should hire unless you choose to hire the best like me. It was my intention to make this blog post informational, like some of my other posts have been, and so I hope you learned something interesting that you can apply in the real world.

If I don’t see you next time then I wish you a merry Christmas and a happy New Year!

My Visit to the Palazzo in Las Vegas, Nevada

As a hotel enthusiast, it’s fun to go to other well-reviewed hotels around the world a criticize them. Before going to the Palazzo in Las Vegas, I read some negative Google reviews and found them to be quite humorous. One person complained about how the pillows were too big!

But I didn’t take any of these reviews to heart. I like to experience things for myself before making an opinion. You should do the same, even though I’m about to express my opinion here. I thought the Palazzo was a great hotel and that it deserves its great reputation. Not only was it pretty to look at inside and outside, the staff was hardworking and pleasing. You can practically live in the hotel without ever going outside because it’s pretty much a mall in there with all the stores you need to live a lifetime. They even have a Venetian canal with gondola rides!

hotel review

I had the pleasure of enjoying some time on their rooftop pool as well. It’s quite nice up there. After going in the Fall I want to know what it’s like in the Winter now. I heard it’s a bad time to go in the Summer because of the heat, but I want to try that too sometime.

The Palazzo is the only hotel I’ve stayed at in Las Vegas so I can’t really tell you whether or not you should stay there because I have nothing to compare it to. All I can say is that it was a splendid time and I’m sure you’ll have a splendid time there too. My only negative feedback is that it was quite pricey, but that’s understandable considering how luxurious it is.

I give the Palazzo 5 out of 5 stars!

The Glory of Electric Appliances in Hotel Restaurants & Our Homes

Imagine how hard it would be to run an establishment like a hotel restaurant without having modern electric appliances. Sure, we could use old-fashioned gas appliances to cook food and keep our kitchen and dining areas lit, but then what about the washing machine, the fridge, etc. Surely hotel restaurants existed before wide-spread electricity hit our cities and if history had happened differently I’m sure someone would have invented a steam powered industrial dishwasher but that’s beside the point.

stove top

If it wasn’t for all the major appliance brands we have today we wouldn’t have all the diversity of technology, the competition to keep our appliances evolving and so on. We’d all be using the ice box still and this potentially means the quality of food we enjoy in hotel restaurants today wouldn’t be the same. I’m sure food was still of good quality back when hotels were using ice boxes, hand dishwashers and gas stoves, but with modern appliances we have the time to work the extra mile and make sure our food is of the best quality possible.

Can you imagine a world without modern appliances? Forget hotel restaurants, imagine how this would impact the home. I can think of a list of 8 things that would be so strange to us if we didn’t get to benefit from the glory of electric appliances:

  1. Doing laundry by hand, taking up our whole weekend.
  2. Not able to keep perishable goods in our kitchen for more than a few days.
  3. Having to rely on smoked and salted meats instead of frozen meats.
  4. Doing all our dishes by hand, although some households still do this.
  5. Not having readily available ice for our drinks when we need it most.
  6. Not being able to set the time on the coffee maker for 6 AM!
  7. Not having good lighting to cook at night.
  8. Every house using gas ovens could be dangerous for fires.
electricity power

And if you gave me another hour I could think of 100 more things. But I think you get the point. That’s why I speak of the “glory” of electric appliances. We rely on them so much today and take them for granted. In the future we may take them for granted even more, unless more people read this post. Then, if we speak of this truth, perhaps we’ll begin to be grateful and cheerful when we’re otherwise upset and depressed. Even if you live in a slum, I bet you still have access to electric appliances and you should be happy about this. You can microwave your food, enjoy a baked chicken breast on holidays, etc.

In a previous post we talked about the importance of a laundry room in your hotel. This would not be possible without electric washers and dryers. The whole hotel industry wouldn’t be the same, and we might not have clean sheets every time we rent a room. In history I know some stories that my grandparents told me of renting hotel rooms that had fleas in the bed! I could not live in a world like this, so I praise electric appliances and speak of their glory for a reason.

I hope I opened your mind to this subject and altered your perspective for the better! After all, without electricity you wouldn’t even be able to read this…