Interview with Richard Schark

January 23, 2024

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The Sacher is one of the internationally renowned brands, and its Original Sacher-Torte is an absolute must-try for both tourists and locals. Richard Schark, F&B Manager of Hotel Sacher Wien, gives us insights into the world of Sacher and excellent hospitality in this interview.

We discuss with him the significance of online reviews for guests planning a visit to Hotel Sacher Wien. We also delve into the changes in guest relations in the gastronomy industry over the last ten years, the challenges in managing online reviews, and how re:spondelligent can provide support. Additionally, we take a look at industry trends and learn about what Mr. Schark personally pays close attention to when dining at a restaurant.

About the person:

Richard Schark is the F&B Manager of the renowned Hotel Sacher Wien, one of the most famous luxury hotels in the world. With his many years of experience in the hospitality industry, he helps to maintain the outstanding culinary excellence and first-class service that make the Hotel Sacher Wien a distinctive address for discerning travelers from all over the world.

 
richard schark hotel sacher

1. Sacher is a globally recognized brand, and trying a Sacher-Torte in Vienna is a must. What role do online reviews play for guests planning a visit?

Online reviews are undoubtedly a hallmark of our business. However, the Sacher brand and the Original Sacher-Torte, along with the tradition behind it, also stand on their own. Undoubtedly, the combination of excellent service, the highest quality, and our online presence attracts guests from around the world to visit us daily.

2. Guest relations in gastronomy today versus ten years ago – what has changed?

Due to the availability of fast communication channels and a public presence, guest relations have become significantly faster and, therefore, more efficient. However, in certain aspects, such as the online segment, it has lost some of its personal touch. The Sacher magic, which is characterized by many aspects of human and individual interaction, is something we continually strive to incorporate into our online communication methods through constant innovations. Over the years, the direct relationship with our guests in-house hasn’t changed; in fact, it has grown stronger. It’s the small details, heartfelt gestures, and excellent service that enchant people every day, driven by our passion. The personal and individual contact that our guests appreciate is what defines us at Sacher.

3. What is the biggest challenge for you in managing online reviews, and how does re:spondelligent assist you?

For such a large and renowned brand like ours, the most significant challenge is individually handling each review. Our top priority has always been to enchant our guests through all channels, including online reviews. Therefore, we take the time to assess and respond to every shared feedback. Additionally, individual reviews help us continuously improve. re:spondelligent provides us with an excellent way to gain a better overview of the reviews through various analyses and efficiently process them using predefined components. Consequently, we have more time to create a unique “Sacher experience” from every visit.

4. Which trend in the gastronomy industry do you consider overrated or underrated?

Every trend has its justification, purpose, and relevance – in a specific place and form. For every business, the key is to find the right way to integrate and implement these trends, or even sometimes omit them.

5. What do you personally pay close attention to when dining at a restaurant?

That I feel comfortable and can enjoy the evening from start to finish. I try to set aside my work and simply savor the restaurant’s concept.

 

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