Today’s interview is quiet different, we interview the people that help make a venue to be the venue it is. The people behind Tamarai, and no not THE OWNERS, but the actual staff, Ahmed the Bouncer, Mahmoud the head bartender and Philip the Floor Manager
Question: how long have you been working with Tamarai?
Ahmed: I have been with tamarai ever since their opening in 2009
Mahmoud: I have been working here since April, 2009
Philip:I was with Working with Tamarai, during the planning stages, before even the opening.
How did you get in this business?
Ahmed: I Started in L`Aubergine, by coincidence in 2002
Mahmoud :I have been in this business for as long as I remember, almost 14 years ago.
Philip: I have been in this field for a long time, I used to work in Hilton, The Marriot, and Fridays among a number of other places.
How do you deal with difficult customers?
Ahmed: As a bouncer I understand that everyone has their own way to deal with things. I have been in the industry in Egypt and here at Tamarai for a long time, so I know the people quiet well, so I know how to deal with each person individually.
Mahmoud :As a bartender most of what I do is listen to the customer. I listen to the customer and stay calm because of course the person is coming with the intention of having fun, if he is overly drunk I speak to one of the owners, who then takes the proper action.
Philip: In Tamarai, we are a venue about giving Class A service to our customers, if someone is causing difficulties, we take him aside and talk to him calmly, if he is unresponsive or still causing issues, then we escalate the issues to the owners.
How do you say NO ?
Ahmed: For me its not hard, I have a guest list I stick with, if the person is not on the guest list I say no, regardless of who the person is, even if they are regulars. I only allow in what’s on my list. I think people got use to this attitude and know that by now.
Mahmoud: I just say no, especially if they are too drunk because if they are driving then I cant take the responsibility for it, so I just say no.
Philip: If someone asks something that is not available, something I can’t do, that’s out of my hands then I have to say no,.
Funniest / weirdest thing you witnessed in Tamarai?
Ahmed: A girl once asked me if I knew her, and I said no. She started crying and invented this whole story about us being engaged, like an Arabic movie scene. Then it turned out that she was actually mentally insane, and her friends came and apologized to me
Mahmoud: Someone asked for a Flaming B52 shot, the drink is suppose to be drunk from a straw, but the guy galloped it, almost burning his lips, as he was literally drinking the flames
Philip: A very big big business man wanted to reserve once, so he sent me sms saying “please call me”!!!
How is it different to work with Biks vs Beltagy?
Ahmed: I have been working with Biks for almost 10 years and been working with Beltagy for 3 years, so naturally I am a bit closer to Biks. That being said I love them both equally and they are both very very professional when It comes to working with me.
Mahmoud: There is no difference, they both are the same, in the way they treat me and the way I treat them.
Philip,: Both of them are the same, they both help us to do our job, the both help the staff with raising the level of contentment in the work place, they both give us a lot of training.
Do you have a girlfriend/ are you engaged?
Mahmoud: I have been Married for 4 years, with two kids Ahmed &Laila
Philp: I Just got Engaged ! 2-3 months ago !!
What do you in your free time?
Ahmed: I love to surf the net.
Mahmoud: Surfing the Net, visiting my friends, and if I really have some free time, then I might do sports!
Philip: Either shopping or just hanging out, but most likely sleep !