CONCIERGE CONFIDENTIAL: HOTEL STORIES by Harry Nicolaides
In 1996, a lowly hotel porter wrote a poem to Senator Natasha Stott Despoja.
The following day, assisting her into a taxi she handed him The Australian newspaper. The poem was reproduced in full. The young aspiring writer was mocked and advised to stick to his day job.
Harry Nicolaides, Concierge at Rydges Melbourne hotel, has gone on to have a book - Concierge Confidential
- published about the bizarre and beautiful world of a large metropolitan hotel. The setting could be New York, Paris or London. The stories have universal themes, looking through the keyhole at the lives of politicians, royalty, entertainers, celebrities, courtesans and confidence men. A European film production company (currently working on a smaller project with a budget of 10 million dollars) is reviewing the stories with the object of adapting the book to screen.
The stories also touch on the lives of the itinerant ne'er-do-wells that inhabit the fringes of the gilded world within - homeless vagrants, taxi drivers, couriers, restaurant waiters and street buskers - adding colour to a vibrant setting that moves to the perpetual rhythm of the revolving door of destiny.
The book is subversive and irreverent, smashing the hotel industry's most sacred taboo - discretion. Concierge Confidential
is a cause to celebrate for the downtrodden, disadvantaged and marginalized in a world of corporate corpulence and craven self-exaggeration. It's also a story about lamb chops, green lip abalone and hedge-going rodents."Well done young Harry. An interesting collection of hotel stories, in which the names have been changed to protect the guilty."
- Kim Beazley, former leader of the Australian Labor Party"Midget hookers, blackmail, extortion - you're lucky you didn't mention me mate! If you did there would be a story about a dead concierge."
- Jeff Fenech, world champion boxer"Harry is a man who understands, sometimes one mini-bar Mars bar is not enough to get you through the night. Congratulations on this interesting collection."
- Natasha Stott Despoja, ex-leader of the Australian Democrats"You are without question the best concierge I've come across in all my travels around the world. Enjoyed the barnyard revue tape. The three midget hookers you sent up were terrific! The china-white heroin was the ..."
- The Amazing Johnathan, Magician"Harry has turned his obvious skills to the telling of tales which tell all of the secrets of the concierge. His stories have splendid twists in the tail. They make delightful hotel bedside reading...Harry's hotel has it all: love, pain, kindness, madness and above all, magic."
- The Hon. Anthony Staley, former Federal President of the Liberal Party of Australia."Mr Nicolaides, whom I consider to be the finest concierge in the world, has warmly and with humour detailed the shenanigans and high jinks of the patrons and staff at this hotel. Truly an entertaining read! Congratulations Harry!"
- David Strassman, Ventriloquist (Chuck Wood & Ted E. Bare)
" is published by Pennon Publishing and available nationally from December 2002 at all major book chains for $22.95Buy it now at