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Four Seasons: The Story of a Business Philosophy

3.86 of 5 stars 3.86  ·  rating details  ·  145 ratings  ·  18 reviews
The founder of Four Seasons Hotels shares the philosophy and values that have made his legendary brand

How did a child of immigrants, starting with no background in the hotel business, create the world's most admired and successful hotel chain? And how has Four Seasons grown dramatically, over nearly a half century, without losing its focus on exceptional quality and unpara
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published April 30th 2009 by Portfolio
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This book is not without its issues, but overall I enjoyed reading it.

Great examples of hotel firsts, additions, and tweaks (my words) based on customer needs, even needs customers didn't know they had. A few good examples of wow moments. Interesting business considerations, especially for someone without a business background. For example, I hadn't really thought about "barrier to entry." Discussion and practical advice about how important culture is to success. I disagree with other revi
This book was just as good as the hotels it represents. for those in the hospitality industry this is the bible. i found the information in these pages to apply to my everyday life in both professional and personal relationships. i plan to use this guide to make my business the best. thank you Isadore
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Talk about a class act. Growing up in a modest family whose patriarch was in the construction business would not necessarily portend what was to become of Isadore Sharp and the Four Seasons Hotel empire he created. From his first hotel, a run of the mill, 125 room motor hotel (motel) in Toronto in 1961, to building and managing an operation that includes 83 of the some of the world's most impressive properties across 35 countries, Sharp has instilled a philosophy that puts service and luxury abo ...more
I confess I was a little disappointed. Although this is probably a good history of the group and touches on the core philosophy that has made four seasons so successful I would have liked to learn more about how to instil and maintain such a culture. I realise as well that Isadore Sharp believes very strongly in his people but perhaps could have done without the list of people and their brief biographies that added nothing to the story itself.
Angelo Vassallo
A fascinating book about the foundation of a big international luxury hotel chain! It is really interesting how Sharp developed his company and overall his motivation, the anecdotes and the relationship with his employee, partners and later with the shareholders.
Even if I am working for Hilton, I have to say that in some pieces I found the book more interesting of “Be my guest” by Conrad Hilton, maybe because the language and the facts are closer to me in terms of time.
A common aspect of the tw
Lori Cotton
Great read for insight on creating a lasting brand.
Christopher Lewis Kozoriz
The power of a global brand name is more important and valuable today than ever before. ~ Isadore Sharp

Written by the founder of the Four Seasons Hotel and Resort chain. Isadore started off developing houses in Toronto, Canada and then decided to build a motel and the rest is history.

The best lesson one can take away from this story is "do not despise the day of small beginnings".
I don't usually read business related books but I heard Isadore Sharpe was an interesting man. This book is really about how he developed the brand to reach a 5 star status and less about his life. It was very interesting to me because I did not know that he was from Toronto, my home town. I also did not know that the Four Seasons had so much integrity.
Nelson Thomas
A brilliant and a very inspiring story! Issy (as he is fondly called) a child of immigrants made it big in a business completely incongruous to his upbringing. Today 'Four Seasons' is considered to be the epitome of relaxed elegance and understated luxury. A must read for every hotelier!
Tom Armstrong
Rather boring. Really more a history of the hotel line than anything to do with business. Worth reading if you have a particular affinity for Four Season's. Other, it's just Sharp repeating again and again that Service is of paramount importance...shocking!
Russ McLeod
Love the culture that Isadore created in Four Seasons hotels. Great learnings from this title around culture, core values and discipline.
Engaging, fast read. Good mix of personal and professional anecdotes. A few parts dragged on a bit, though I loved the story.
i learned a lot and im happy i read it. i take much more notice of things when i stay in hotels now.
please see my review in advertising age:
Much more than a business man...a true human.
Spencer Thompson
Incredible Business Philosophy
Two words: Customer Service
Fred Arshoff
Very imformativce
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