A Comparison of Orange Juice Serving methodologies in European Hotels and Guesthouses

Orange JuiceOrange juice is a staple of many a hotel breakfast. Because of its ubiquitous nature a wide variety of serving methods are currently used to serve this vitamin-C rich fruit extract. This article examines 5 solutions observed in practice in European cities.

Single glass of Orange juice for each guest placed on their table ahead of their arrival.
Pros: No equipment needed
Cons: What if another guest steals your drink before you get up, most self respecting travelers will require more than one glass of juice to start the day.
Verdict:  Cheap to provide but underwhelming.
As experienced in:  Amsterdam

Closed top jug, self service from buffet table.
Pros: Simple equipment, able to have as much or little juice as you desire.  You can’t drop toast in the jug.
Cons: Jug size meant regular refilling of the jug was required.
Verdict:  Best for small guesthouses.
As experienced in: Berlin

Self-service urn-style dispenser automatically refilled from large refrigerated tank.
Pros: Juice didn’t run dry at any point or need attention from staff other than a brief glance when the wandered past.
Cons: High set up cost.
Verdict:  Minimal demands on staff time during the busy breakfast period and rapid drink pouring rate.  High throughput coupled with larger installation costs means this is the best system for large high occupancy hotels.
As experienced in: Prague

Standard urn of orange juice.
Pros:  Ability for guests to serve themselves as much as they like at a good speed.
Cons: Lack of chilling means juice is likely to warm as it sits waiting to be released from urn.
Verdict:  A real low-tech solution to the age-old How best to serve Orange Juice at a hotel breakfast problem it works well so long as the urn is of sufficient size.
As experienced in: Vienna

Push button vending machine combining Orange juice concentrate and water.
A button press results in juice being diluted and dropping from a nozzle into a glass the guest has hopefully positioned correctly.
Pros: concentrate means refilling does not require the manual transportation of vast amounts of heavy liquid.  Customers can (in practice) obtain sufficient juice for their vitamin-C rich hydration need.

  • When concentrate runs low juice is dispensed in an increasingly diluted state through drinks with the constituency of orange squash to water.
  • Each press of the machine releases a programmed amount of liquid which is unlikely to sufficiently fill the provided glass.
  • A delay means it is not possible to activate pouring multiple times in rapid succession, prolonged the serve time per customer.
  • Splash.  The liquid falls a fair way between the machine and base of the placed glass.
  • In practice hotel staff were slow to identify Orange squash syndrome and replacing the concentrate seemed to require a needlessly complicated procedure, including flushing out remaining water in the system between concentrate hopper and nozzle

Verdict: Poor guest experience, demands staff time, though savings on buying concentrate.
As seen in: Mestre

So, if you’re looking to set up a hotel or guest-house, you now have something to work off…

Photo: oranges & juice 5 by helter-skelter (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

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