We’ve tried to make a reservation there before for the evening’s show. First via Instagram. No answer. Then by email. No answer. No matter. So then by phone. That worked. At least we thought so. Then when we got there, they couldn’t find our reservation. Ok. That can happen once…
Since we read in other reviews that this happens sometimes, we went directly to Lafayette last Saturday afternoon and made the reservation for last night with a hostess. We had friends from abroad visiting and were looking forward to the special evening. But it should come differently.
Arrived at 8:45 pm. There was no COVID certificate check, none of the employees wore a mask. The hostess did not find our reservation again. She asked for a confirmation, which of course we did not have. We had made the reservation directly at the place. Instead of finding a solution, she simply ignored us and took care of the other guests. An assistant then told us to go to the bar they will see what is going on. More and more people came to the bar who either didn’t have a reservation or also had problems with the reservation. Getting a drink was also not really possible, it was chaos at the bar. After about 30 minutes without any further information, I lost patience and we went back to the hostess. There was another woman there who asked if there was a problem.
YES. There is a problem. You have lost our reservation for the second time!
I explained everything to her again. She did not really listen to me. In between, she ran away several times and was on the phone. Ok. Since I live long enough in Serbia, I know that sometimes you have to be “loud” to get something here. So I asked for the manager. She claimed she was the manager.
Ok. Then it would be your job. To solve our problem, right? But maybe she doesn’t understand my English? So my fiancee explained everything again in Serbian. That didn’t help either.
A solution? There is none. She tells us they have 65 tables, 65 reservations. Period. And she ignored us again. I had two choices now. I get really loud and ask for her boss. Or we leave this place and don’t spend any money here. We decided on the second one.
I have NEVER experienced such ignorance and unfriendliness in my whole life! We went to hundreds of restaurants. In the best restaurants in Belgrade, in Berlin, in London, in Paris, in Dubai, in NY, in Zurich – you name it.
What more can I say about this? I still have no words. To be fair, the food there is good. We have already been there twice for lunch and ordered food from there. That’s not where the problem lies.
The problem is the reservation system, which is not a system, but chaos on paper lists with unfriendly & incompetent employees. We were not the only ones either, there are several reviews on the internet with the same problem and another group of people was later in the same restaurant we were in Beton Hala – we were hungry.
If anyone from the Lafayette team or management reads this post, please feel free to contact me. I don’t just complain, I know how to solve the problem with the reservations. I also know how to train employees to be friendly with customers and to be solution-oriented. I have years of experience in event management and work as a business developer and “Swiss Quality Optimizer”.
And for all of you who want to spend an evening there…
- Ask for reservation confirmation.
- Don’t have expectations of a great evening, it may well be that they won’t find your reservation and have an alternative plan ready 😉
Is there anyone who has had similar experiences or did everything work out for you? Then feel free to leave a comment…
Update. Through a colleague who knows the owner, we have received the following message about our case.
Every guest who makes a reservation for the Lafayette restaurant must receive the same message, our circular. Please understand it is obvious that the protocol has not been followed. Any person who makes a reservation for Lafayette is also obliged to leave a contact phone number and to confirm their arrival on the day of booking no later than 12 noon. It is a booking protocol in our restaurant that we all respect.
-> BGfoodies: “The protocol was not followed”. Is that supposed to mean that we are now guilty that the employees made mistakes? And yes. You have read correctly. You as a customer must call, not the restaurant calls you 🙃
You can ask for confirmation of the reservation to be sent to your email. The best is to book on the Instagram profile.
-> BGfoodies: It’s nice they have a protocol. It’s just that the employees don’t follow it. And it is also not communicated. Because we had reserved the first time by phone. The girl confirmed that everything was fine. She had our number. There was never a confirmation but she never said that we need one. The last time we were there on the spot and made the reservation. The hostess wrote it on her phone with our name. She did not even ask for a phone number.
And the owner probably doesn’t know what’s going on operationally anymore.
No one answers emails, Instagram says to book by phone, and reservation messages are NOT answered. The same thing is on the website. Reservations are only possible by phone.
The problem here is with the employees and the organization. And it doesn’t matter why it didn’t work. What upset me so much was how they reacted to our complaint.
The Prices and the dress code
La Lafayette offers standard and premium tables. Premium tables are located closer to the stage. Mandatory for a standard table is dinner.
For a premium dinner and a bottle of premium drink from 15000 RSD. We have a cabaret fee which is 10 Euro/per person and is included in the bill. The minimum age limit is 23 years.
The dress code is elegant. That means that man needs to be dressed in shirts and pants and for ladies, elegant evening dresses or suits.
-> BGfoodies: It would be good to have this information on the website & co. Same with the reservation process. But there is nothing at all.
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Business Development is his primary occupation. He was a founder of a bar in Belgrade which helped him understand the Serbian mentality better. He is an avid food, coffee and wine lover, a passionate hobby chef, loves Serbian girls and meat.