Every day before she goes to work, Four Seasons head concierge Hope Maloney takes a moment to affix a pin to each of lapels. While the pins, depiction sets of crossed golden keys, may just look like jewelry to some, insiders know these pins mean she’s a member of Les Clefs D’Or (pronounced “lay clay door,” French for “keys of gold”). They distinguish her as one of the most skilled concierges in the world.
Maloney was the first person in the state to attain the Les Clefs d’Or honor, and is one of only two Wyomingites to earn the distinction. She completed a 15-hour test, gathered letters of recommendation, found current members to sponsor her, and even fielded a “secret shopper” call to earn her keys.
But when she first came to Jackson in 1998, she didn’t have visions of golden lapel keys in mind. She simply wanted a break from her busy New York City life and came to the Tetons on vacation. The following year, she wanted a longer break from the city’s hectic pace so she took a job at Lost Creek Ranch. She spent her summers working at the ranch and winters at Jackson Hole Mountain Resort’s Kids’ Ranch, in addition to a rotation of other jobs including nanny, personal assistant, barista, and florist.
But when the Four Seasons opened in 2003, she found her future career. Starting as a lounge server, she soon transferred to the concierge desk and became head concierge in 2006.
“One of the things I love about being a concierge is all of the problem solving that we have to do,” she says. “We help guests when they are in a bind, and it’s nice to be able to think creatively and figure out ways to solve guests’ various problems. Oftentimes, there is a time constraint involved so it really puts your problem-solving skills to the test.”
While Maloney and seven other concierges routinely handle day-to-day requests such as making dining reservations, booking local activities and spa treatments, ordering flowers, and the like, sometimes guests are looking for something a bit less conventional.
She recalls one guest who wanted an ice sculpture of his wife’s name. Not finding any local ice-carving artists ready to take on the task, the concierge team tracked down a Colorado ice artist who created the sculpture and drove it all the way to Jackson on a white-knuckle drive.
“We can make most things happen,” Maloney says.
Another guest wanted an engagement to remember, so he worked with the hotel to ship clothes and shoes from a personal shopper and have a new wardrobe ready for his girlfriend upon arrival. He also shipped some relationship mementos and took her on a romantic boat ride to pop the question—she said “yes.”
“She didn’t even know she was coming to Jackson,” Maloney recalls. “It’s fun to be able to do unexpected things.”
When she’s not at work, Maloney revels in Jackson pastimes like cross-country skiing and hiking, as well as spending time outdoors with her partner, Mike, and their 6-year-old son, Michael. Her delight in Jackson living translates to her work.
“Jackson Hole is the best, and being able to share it with people is what makes the job,” she says.