Looks are undoubtedly very important, but some people make too much of physical appearance. A group of restaurants in Paris is accused by two of their former employees of seating clients according to their good-looks. “The good-looking ones are led to the good places, where they can be easily seen”, claim the former employees, and “as for the non-good-looking ones, it is imperative that they be dispatched to the corners of the room”.
The restaurants accused of having such a shallow policy are strategically situated near popular tourist attractions: Le Georges is in the the famous Centre Pompidou, while Cafe Marly is located near the Louvre museum. Apparently, this marketing strategy has a lot to do with the way in which the two restaurants are perceived by those passing by them. In fact, the staff members in charge of placing the guests at their tables were allegedly confronted for seating less attractive people at the best tables. “What are these ugly mugs doing at this table? Everyone can see them when they come in. It’s very bad for our image,” the employees were allegedly reprimanded when they broke the rule. The only exception to this rule are celebrities, who, regardless of their looks, are automatically offered the the best seats in the house.
If people are seated according to their attractiveness, what happens when people call to make reservations? The restaurant’s personnel obviously can’t tell if someone is good-looking or not just by hearing their voice, so the solution is that of saying “We’ll do what we can but we can promise nothing”. The decision of where to place the guests is taken the minute they show their faces. It’s not only the guests who are selected according to their looks, but also the hostesses working for the two Parisian restaurants. As former employees recall, women have to be tall, model-looking and younger than 30 in order to be hired.
The two restaurants, Le Georges and Cafe Marly, are part of the Costes group, owned by Thierry and Gilbert Costes. Although Gilbert is allegedly proud of implementing this criterion, the official spokesperson of the group declared that the owners “have no comment”. The position of other members of the Le Georges restaurant is rather secretive, as they don’t deny the existence of this practice but they refuse to offer any explanation.