The crossed gold keys on a concierge’s lapel signifies that he or she has sufficiently mastered the art to gain entrance into the exclusive club known as Les Clefs D’Or USA (French for “the golden keys;” pronounced LAY-CLAY-DOOR), the sole national organization of hotel lobby concierges. It must be noted that there are just 601 LCD concierges in the U.S., 3800 worldwide. Make that soon 602 and 3801, respectively. The Ritz-Carlton Rancho Mirage’s Carol Ragognetti is a breath away from being inducted into this illustrious society, and when it’s official, she will be one of only a handful of Palm Springs Valley concierges to have earned this great honor.
A wife, mother of two grown children, and grandmother of one grandson, Carol was born and raised in Los Angeles. Travel was a large part of her childhood, and the places she has visited in her youth and in her later years include South America, Australia, New Zealand, and Europe. Professionally, Carol has been employed by Marriott International for the past six and a half years, serving first as concierge at the JW Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa in Palm Desert, then being promoted to both Lead Concierge and Guest Services Supervisor at the Ritz-Carlton Rancho Mirage earlier this year. A resident of La Quinta and the winner of “Concierge of the Year” among all desert concierges in 2014, Carol has left no touristic stone unturned in the Palm Springs Valley, and is an expert among experts in her field.
When I asked her what the top five favorite things were about her job, number one was that she doesn’t consider her position a job. “It’s something that I love to do,” she says, “and it comes from my heart.” Second would be the dedicated ladies and gentlemen with whom she works atop that famed hill. “It makes coming to work a joy!” Third is the destination itself—and by that I suspect she means not only the beautiful physical resort that is the Ritz Carlton Rancho Mirage but the desert in its entirety. Fourth is that every day is a new adventure. “I never know in which direction my day will take me,” she says. “And I am bound to learn something new along the way.” Last but not least, Carol says that “the best is that I have the opportunity to create ‘WOW!’ personalized moments for our guests, and the opportunity to assist them in capturing memories that they will take with them to have for a lifetime. How cool is that?!” www.ritzcarlton.com/ranchomirage