Behind the Scenes – Q&A with Nell Staff

The Nell has been decorated with awards and accolades for nearly three decades – in large part due to the caring staff, from the front of the house to the back of the house. Here, we glean insights from three longtime members of the team, why they’ve chosen to work here, and why The Nell holds a special place in their hearts.

With that in mind, we want you to get to know us a little better. Thus this month we have the pleasure of introducing you to our ski concierge manager, in-house ski tuner, and our senior event sales manager.

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Ray McNutt and Jerry Scheinbaum

Ski Concierge Manager and In-House Ski Tuner

Ski Concierge Manager Ray McNutt, center, surrounded by his team.

Jerry Scheinbaum provides overnight ski tunes for Nell guests.

When it comes to dynamic duos, it doesn’t get much better than The Little Nell’s Ray McNutt and Jerry Scheinbaum.

In fact, these two boast more than 50 combined years of experience serving The Nell’s skiing clientele. Jerry worked as the hotel’s very first ski concierge back in 1989, which is the position Ray has held since 1996.

“I started back when the hotel first opened, running the ski concierge department,” said Jerry, who today serves as the hotel’s in-house ski tuner. “And while there were many challenges at that time, the guests, from the beginning, loved what we offered.”

To this day, Nell guests still love the ski concierge service — and the ski concierge staff love the service they provide the guests.

“I’d say one of the most rewarding parts of my job is sharing our love of Aspen and the outdoor lifestyle with our guests — they are always so appreciative of this insider knowledge,” said Ray.

And this bond — between client and concierge, ski tuner and skier, and the employees themselves — is what really stands out.

“When we tune a pair of skis, I know the guest will have a better day on snow,” Jerry said.

Ray agreed: “Each guest is different, and brings something new and unique to the table. It’s our goal to be sure and meet their individual needs.”

And, through some incredible teamwork, dynamic duos such as Jerry and Ray get the job done, year after year after year.

“The Nell is such an exceptional place to work because of the people we work with, they are the best,” Jerry said.

“We’re like a family,” added Ray.

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Melina Glavas Chandy

Senior Event Sales Manager

Melina - Award-Winning Staff at The Little Nell

Melina Glavas Chandy at the Aspen Mountain Club.

When asked what the most rewarding part of her job at the Nell is, Melina —  who has been in her current role for the past five years (prior to that, she was the director of events for eight years) — could not say enough about how special the client-guest relationship truly is.

I love being part of something extraordinary,” she said. ”I work in events, so we create very special moments and memories for our guests. We literally take dreams and make them a reality.”

To do this, Melina and her team spend countless hours listening, planning and creating the perfect event. In her own words: ”We develop intimate relationships and personalize the entire experience. It’s a joy to see it all from start to finish.”

Also rewarding to Melina, and to many of her colleagues, is being part of The Little Nell’s unique employee culture.

“I am inspired every single day by my team,” she said, adding that Nell employees are encouraged to “think outside the box and create new experiences for our guests.”

This, in turn, creates a work environment unlike any other in Aspen, she believes.

“Thanks to the Herculean efforts by our human resources team, The Nell finds and hires great people – creative, inspired and hard-working. Every employee at the Little Nell is so passionate about being the best at what they do and take pride in serving our guests the best way possible. We are creative, inspired and hard-working — and we treat each other with respect,” she said. “Simply put, The Little Nell is a family, and we care for each other accordingly.”

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THE DETAILS

Among other accolades for its staff and service, The Little Nell is the proud recipient of countless awards. Here are just a few; check out a more in-depth list.

* FORBES TRAVEL GUIDE: Recipient of the prestigious Forbes Five-Star Award (Formerly Mobil) in 2019, marking the 24th consecutive year to receive this designation as “one of the best hotels in the world.” Our signature restaurant and bar, element 47, has been awarded Five Stars since 2015, making it one of two Five Star restaurants in Colorado and the only in Aspen.

* WINE SPECTATOR: Since 1997, The Little Nell has been recognized as a “Grand Award Winner” for having an exceptional wine program.

THE ASPEN TIMES: In the 2018 Locals Choice Awards, The Little Nell and Ajax Tavern took home plenty of honors, including top three finishes in the Best Hotel, Best Burger, Best Patio and Best Place to People Watch.