It's finally here, the infamous "fall" - or, as we Brits call it, autumn.
For Barnsley Gardens, it's the busiest time of the year, when the temperatures hover around the mid- to high 70s and all the holiday-makers come out of hibernation.
At present, our business mix is 60% corporate and 40% leisure. Atlanta, being the second largest city in the USA and home to more than 100 of the Fortune 500 companies, is certainly capable of offering opportunities for continued growth in both these markets.
September will see our highest occupancy to date - and, of course, the inevitable operational headaches. Although we continue training aggressively and putting systems and procedures in place, with a new operation there is always fire-fighting to ensure that the guests depart happy and want to return.
Being in a uniquely designed and built property is wonderful, but, unfortunately, challenges abound for the staff. The architectural and design teams, in creating something beautiful, overlooked the fact that to cater for 750 guests at peak times requires well-planned operational flow.
As hoteliers, we have all been faced with these problems at some time and wished we could have been there at the planning stage. The good news is that, starting in 2001, we have been given approval from the owner to make some structural changes.
My family and I are slowly adjusting to our new life in the USA, but I must say that we are reminded daily of just how differently things operate. We searched through 85 channels on the television, trying to find some international news.
Although the Americans don't seem to mind, we feel very cut off from the rest of the world. Nothing happens nearly as efficiently or quickly as we are led to believe.
And the USA has become the voice-mail capital of the world. I would estimate that 75% of all calls I make each day see me talking to a recording. Quite regularly, we simply follow a series of touch-button commands without ever talking to a real person.
However, we offer a respite from technology, where guests can get back in touch with nature and enjoy the peace, tranquillity and mystique of a 19th-century English village, served by warm, friendly staff, eager to please.
We may even take all the phones out of the rooms and plug them in only on request. n
EUAN McGLASHAN is general manager of the Barnsley Inn &Golf Resort, north of Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Next diary from Euan McGlashan: 26 October