MONTEGO BAY, St James - The third of its kind to open in one of Sandals' resorts in Jamaica, the re-imagined and highly anticipated staff restaurant, Dalton's Lounge, pays homage to a tradition of excellence, the warmth of family, and a truly dedicated hospitality stalwart - Dalton "Red Yute" Smith.
Hailed as Sandals' longest-serving employee, Smith has displayed an unfailing loyalty to Sandals Resorts International (SRI) for the past 42 years.
The decision to christen the new staff restaurant in his honour was an obvious choice, considering his consistent dedication and passion for hospitality and people. Sandals Montego Bay General Manager Christopher Elliott expressed this sentiment during the ribbon-cutting ceremony, emphasising that Smith's legacy embodies the brand's commitment to service excellence.
Also on hand to share in the festivities and recognise his long-time friend was chief operations officer for SRI, Shawn Dacosta who took a trip down memory lane, reflecting on his shared history with Smith at Sandals Montego Bay in 1991, and recalling how iconic the staff canteen was then.
"We spent countless hours here, sharing lunches and envisioning its potential for improvement. Today, those dreams have become a reality. Seeing this space now bear Dalton's name and uphold his legacy fills us with pride," said Dacosta.
For him Dalton's Lounge sets a new standard, continuing the immense transformations that Sandals Montego Bay has undergone since 1981 and the company's commitment to continuous improvement.
"We're on a journey towards enhancement, not just for our guests but also for our dedicated team members," said Dacosta. "The re-imagination of our team member restaurants marks the initial step in our comprehensive plan."
He noted that SRI is dedicated to upgrading staff facilities in all resorts, ensuring they are not just enriching, uplifting and functional, but spaces that honour Sandals' rich history.
Dalton's Lounge is not just a physical space but a symbol of Sandals' rich history. In addition to modern aesthetics, state-of-the-art appliances, high-speed Internet and Wi-Fi, the eatery provides a distinctively welcoming atmosphere where team members can reflect on the foundation laid by SRI founder Gordon "Butch" Stewart.
During the launch Information Technology Manager Norris Reid praised the renovations and pointed to the timeliness of the new facility where team members can relax and enjoy delicious meals in a delightful setting. Colourful posters lining the walls serve as a constant reminder of the values that breathe life into the Sandals vision.
The official opening of Dalton's Lounge was followed by team members relishing the first of many scrumptious meals.