Sinatra’s at Pepper Club Hotel Sweet and DSTV Sour Service Awards

The Sweet Service Award goes to the Pepper Club Hotel and its restaurant Sinatra’s, for their invitation to try out the R50 Business Lunch in 50 Minutes, which includes free parking too.  An order of a Smoked Chicken salad, with Danish feta, corn kernels, peppadews, avocado, and lettuce was brought to the table 10 minutes after arrival, and the generous portion eaten within 25 minutes from arrival.  Other lunch choices are Grilled Beef Burger, Chicken curry, mushroom penne pasta, and cajun spiced chicken pita, all costing R50. Service by Sally, the manager, and the waitress Noku, was friendly and efficient.  The restaurant is a peaceful haven relative to the buzz of the city.

The Sour Service Award goes to DSTV, for changing its Dish TV magazine to a smaller format, and removing the movie schedules.  Multichoice has motivated the change on the long printing lead times, which make programme schedule information unreliable due to short-term schedule changes.  The company also believes that its viewers will be able to access up to date programme information on their PVR, but it appears that not all viewers are technically proficient to find this information, and want a printed guide.  Complaints are directed against the company for its ‘arrogance’ in making the change without announcement nor conducting market research, once a hallmark of the company when it was launched by Koos Bekker, when we were part of his initial team, and everything was researched.  Subscribers received an after-the-fact sms survey on the Thursday before the long weekend, at 21h00, hardly a consumer-friendly time for a business survey!

The WhaleTales Sweet & Sour Service Awards are presented every Friday on the WhaleTales blog.  Nominations for the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be sent to Chris von Ulmenstein at   Past winners of the Sweet and Sour Service Awards can be read on the Friday posts of this blog, and in the WhaleTales newsletters on the website.

POSTSCRIPT 23/5: DStv has announced that, after its subscriber poll, it will send subscribers who voted for a TV schedule in their DISH magazine a custom magazine with the schedule.  One can still request a custom magazine with the TV schedule from them.

3 replies on “Sinatra’s at Pepper Club Hotel Sweet and DSTV Sour Service Awards”

  1. Mike says:

    I’m sorry but I do not in any way understand why people are complaining about DSTV’s decision to downscale its print edition of the TV guide.

    As if their argument on late schedule changes doesn’t make enough sense, the downscaling of the guide saves paper! People who argue against the change are probably the same people who want to be seen to be recycling and shopping for organic foods…

    Lastly I can’t for a moment believe that there are people who aren’t “technically proficient” enough to use the digital guide. Pick up your remote, press ‘TV Guide’ and voila!

    I say get rid of the print edition all together DSTV! Forget the stone-age consumerists with a low learning curve.

  2. Butch Rice says:

    I am with you on this one, Chris. The ironic thing is that Koos Bekker started life as a market research manager. He should know better. But then, it is noticeable that a lot of time, the companies in his stable treat consumers with disdain, knowing they don’t have alternatives, or that it is too much of a hassle to switch.

  3. Thank you Butch.

    Twenty-five years ago I was Koos Bekker’s right-hand girl, commissioning the market research that led to the setting up of M-Net. He would not move without conducting market research in those days, so customer-driven was he.

    Sadly that’s all gone.


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