English Butlers Wanted For Super-Rich Clients in China, Russia

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English butlers, synonymous with Reginald Jeeves in the novels of P.G. Wodehouse, are answering more calls from super-rich Chinese and Russian clients as wealth shifts between east and west.

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English Butlers Wanted in China and Russia

English Butlers Wanted for Super-Rich Clients

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Dec. 13 (Bloomberg) — Bloomberg’s Louise Beale reports on demand for professionally-trained English butlers from super-rich clients in Russia, China and the Middle East. (Source: Bloomberg)

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“Demand is outstripping supply,” Watson said by telephone. “We deal with people who often are cash rich and time poor. The credit crunch did affect things for a time, but before you get rid of the butler, get rid of the Ferrari.”

As Europe struggles with a debt crisis and the U.S. tries to revive its economy, burgeoning growth in emerging markets is boosting spending on luxuries like never before, and creating opportunities for more people to look after them.

The ranks of millionaires in 10 major Asian economies will more than double to 2.8 million by 2015, according to a Julius Baer Group and CLSA Asia Pacific Markets report on Aug. 31. China’s economy grew 9.1 percent in the third quarter from a year earlier, compared with U.S. growth of 1.5 percent.

Mulberry Group Plc (MUL), an English maker of luxury bags and accessories, said on Dec. 8 that first-half pretax profit more than tripled as sales in the Asia-Pacific region grew more quickly than in any other area.

Chinese Clients

“We have been doing a lot of business in China particularly,” said Robert Wennekes, chairman of The International Butler Academy, which trains servants in formal white gloves and tails at a castle in the Netherlands. “Every month for the past 15 months, I have been travelling from Amsterdam to China to service our clients there.”

Watson estimated that his company trains more than 1,000 butlers per year and around a fifth of those go into personal service for the wealthy, with the remainder at hotels.

Demand for placing butlers in the homes and yachts of the wealthy increased about 20 percent this year, according to Sebastian Hirsch, owner of Butler For You, a company registered in Berlin placing household staff across Europe. Hirsch has 30 percent more butlers on his books this year.

Sara Vestin, director of Bespoke Bureau, Peek-a-boo & Cupcakes Domestic Staff & Nanny agencies in London, said her company trained 52 butlers this year, up from 20 last year, and they all got jobs. The highest paid placement was for a 101,500- pound ($158,390) salary in the United Arab Emirates, she said.

‘Win, Win’

“Everyone looking for a job who is accepted on the training with us, will get a job,” Vestin said in a Dec. 7 e- mail. “There are a lot of people looking to hire butlers and there is a shortage of them, so for us it’s a win, win situation,” she said.

Butlers undergo a month-long training program that includes instruction on food and wine service and “second guessing” what their employer wants, said Watson. It costs trainees about 8,000 pounds for the live-in package.

The butler’s place in English society reached its peak during the increasing affluence of the Victorian era when having a butler was “considered essential for those aspiring to gentility,” according to The Rise and Fall of the Victorian Servant, a book written by Pamela Horn and published in 1975.

“In most families the office of butler was one which commanded respect and even awe,” Horn wrote. “The aim was to provide service as quietly and efficiently as possible.”

Fewer Butlers

In 1911, some 800,000 British homes had servants, following World War I the numbers dropped as new career paths opened and social attitudes changed, according to Horn. By 1969, the number of male servants fell to 12,000 in the U.K., declining further over the subsequent four decades. There are now around 8,000 butlers in the U.K., Hirsch at Butler For You estimated.

The role of the modern butler is now closer to that of a personal assistant, helping organize an employer’s diary, as well as offering advice on etiquette, with discretion a must, said Watson. Discretion is vital since Paul Burrell, butler to Princess Diana, revealed details of her life following her death in 1997, Watson, a former butler, said.

Greycoat Placements, also based in London, has about 20,000 people on its books today, three times more than in 2008, Salter said. Butler placements by the company grew about 20 percent this year over 2010, she said.

Demand has been driven partly because of a growing number of Chinese clients needing butlers for their second homes in London, said Laura Harrall, a director at Greycoats.

“Asia is coming up pretty strong now,” Watson said. “We are getting lots of enquiries from these Chinese who are sitting on piles of money. They are discovering that if you spend $8 million on a villa with marble flooring, you need someone to come along who knows what they are doing.”

 

More info about Bespoke Bureau and the British Butler Academy:

Based in the prestigious heart of London (Guildhall in the city) for the past 11 years and now a franchise, we pride ourselves to be considered “The World‘s and The UK’s Best Household Staffing Agency” amongst staff agencies

Bespoke Bureau specialises in the recruitment of household staff internationally including House/Estate ManagersButlersHousekeepersChefsNannies, Gardeners etc for palaces, mansions, estates, prestigious houses and yachts all over the world. We provide high calibre staff – professional, multi-functional, discreet and flexible.

Over the years we have built a strong relationship with domestic staff candidates and private NHW and other clients alike which has led to new opportunities that enable us to provide a more comprehensive service with our clients’ needs in mind.

For assistance and advice on all the services we offer, please contact us and we will be delighted to help you.

We are a leading domestic staff agency in London due to our dedication to providing our clients with dependable, thorough and professional household staff. We have built up an enviable reputation across London and can provide tailored household staff services to suit our clients’ private household staff requirements.

We only hire experienced domestic staff who can deliver the high standards required from our private employers. Our household staff agency will undertake a rigorous domestic staff recruitment process, as we carefully check their household employment history and references, as well as interviewing each candidate at great length to ensure they have the right professional attitude and personality to work in the domestic staff service in the UK and overseas.

All our domestic staff on our domestic agency’s database understand the importance of hard work and discretion, and are 100% committed to delivering an outstanding household work service on a daily basis.

As a leading household staff agency, we will work alongside you to ensure that all your needs are met. We can provide an array of domestic staff to suit your household, including:

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  • Gardeners and Handymen
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More info on: http://www.bespokebureau.com/

Many of our domestic staff employees can combine a number of the domestic staff roles upon request, but this will depend on the hours of employment required. As well as being a leading domestic agency in London, we can also provide domestic staff services across the UK and abroad/overseas.

For more information on our household staff agency and candidates, don’t hesitate to contact us today. We look forward to hearing from you.

Kind regards,
Sara Vestin Rahmani
Director
Bespoke Bureau, Peek-a-boo and Cupcakes

Blackwell House | Guildhall Yard
Bank | London | EC2V 5AE
Bespoke: +44 (0) 2031670925
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www.bespokebureau.com
www.peekaboochildcare.com

Bespoke and Peekaboo in recent News:

Our new Exciting Yacht academy (Reuters News release film)
Russias main news station visits the residential Butler school
The Bespoke Bureau Butler school Reuters visit (6 mins news)
The Guardian does 5 pages on The Yacht Academy
The world news org reports on Bespoke Butlers

Time out Dubai interviews Vestin on Butler trends

TVH11-The return of the Butler
CNN reports on Bespoke Bureau-From Jeeves to Jiang
Evening standard recommend Bespoke’s Butlers
Arabian Business meets with Vestin at the Yacht Academy

6 page story on Bespoke Butlers in the Jazeera Magazine by Sakhr Al-Makhadhi

The Global Post interviews Sara Vestin on Butlers
Washington DC and Chinese CCTV’s Richard Bestik visits Peek-a-boo
Great British post on Butlers in China with Bespoke
Tokyo TV News on Bespoke Bureau
Channel 4’s Brunch gets a visit from our Head Butler
CBS This morning reports on Bespoke Bureau
Paris Match Magazine speaks to Peek-a-boo
Swedish Dagens industri and PS tells about our success
Hotelier Middle East reports on Bespoke Bureau
The times report on the Modern Butler
Al Arabia News on our Nannies and Butlers
Arabian Business News reports on our Mid East Demand
Australia’s courier mail on Bespoke Bureau
The Daily Telegraph in Australia on Sara Vestin and Bespoke 
News.com in Australia reports on London’s Finest academy 
Adelaide Now reports on Butler Trends
Australian News talks to The bespoke Bureau
Daily Mail reports on Bespoke Bureau

Metro London on Bespoke Bureau
Reuters TV pays a visit to our London Academy
New York based Alex Burton talks to Sara
Russian TVC news channel reports on the Butler School
CCTV in China visits the school
Spanish Elmundo reports on Bespoke
The Economist Oct 2012
Sky news Oct 2012
Independent Oct 2012
Bloomberg TV Jan 2012
BBC Breakfast Mar 2012

Butler trends in China
China’s demand from Bespoke Bureau
British Butlers on the rise
Sweden reports on their Native Sara and Bespoke
Women’s everything interviews Sara on her businesses
The Telegraph-Chinese  Nannies in the rise

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