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The Hotel Clerk

One stormy night many years ago, an elderly man and his wife entered the lobby of a small hotel in Philadelphia, USA. Trying to get out of the rain, the couple approached the front desk hoping to get some shelter for the night.

“Could you possibly give us a room here?” – the husband asked.

The clerk, a friendly man with a winning smile, looked at the couple and explained that there were three conventions in town. “All of our rooms are taken,” the clerk said. “But I can’t send a nice couple like you out into the rain at one o’clock in the morning. Would you perhaps be willing to sleep in my room? It’s not exactly a suite, but it will be good enough to make you folks comfortable for the night.”

When the couple declined, the young man pressed on. “Don’t worry about me, I’ll make out just fine,” the clerk told them.

So the couple agreed.

As he paid his bill the next morning, the elderly man said to the clerk, “You are the kind of manager who should be the boss of the best hotel. Maybe someday I’ll build one for you.”

The clerk looked at them and smiled. The three of them had a good laugh. As they drove away, the elderly couple agreed that the helpful clerk was indeed exceptional, as finding people who are both friendly and helpful isn’t easy.

Two years passed. The clerk had almost forgotten the incident when he received a letter from the old man. It recalled that stormy night and enclosed a round-trip ticket to New York, asking the young man to pay them a visit.

The old man met him in New York, and led him to the corner of Fifth Avenue and 34th Street. He then pointed to a great new building there, a pale reddish stone, with turrets and watchtowers thrusting up to the sky.

“That,” said the older man, “is the hotel I have just built for you to manage.”

“You must be joking.” – the young man said.

“I can assure you I am not.” – said the older man, a sly smile playing around his mouth.

The older man’s name was William Waldorf-Aster, and that magnificent structure was the original Waldorf-Astoria Hotel. The young clerk who became its first manager was George C. Boldt. This young clerk never foresaw the turn of events that would lead him to become the manager of one of the world’s most glamorous hotels.

Author Unknown

Don’t be afraid to reach and touch someone’s life, you never know who’s heart you may be touching.

{ 32 comments… add one }
  • Tarun jain January 21, 2023, 9:29 am

    Best story I ever heard.

  • Priti doshi February 10, 2017, 2:16 am

    I always read your stories and inspire my students by giving example of real life stories with a moral values.

  • W. Hayes June 10, 2016, 11:37 am

    I tell people when you do good, it comes back to you! Also, do it without looking for a return!

  • Nwadibia Igwe Abraham June 7, 2016, 7:23 am

    Every good thing have a reward, God rewarded him for his kindness.

  • Sammy Kuri August 3, 2014, 9:57 pm

    Nice story, I really enjoy it……..

  • Vasu reddy June 3, 2014, 12:42 am


  • Sethu March 3, 2014, 7:13 am

    Nice story.

  • Chenfjehgves November 29, 2013, 1:18 am

    Amazing story.

  • Mishwa August 17, 2013, 5:28 am

    Superb story

  • Emorlyn July 11, 2013, 4:38 am

    Thank you very much for sharing such type of story. All the stories are wonderful.

  • Divya Kadavala July 7, 2013, 11:10 am

    Yes it’s true we don’t know when we will touch others heart….

  • Michelle Gift June 21, 2013, 9:26 am

    What a nice write up.

  • Gegan June 18, 2013, 9:38 am

    Good lesson.

  • Sharin Babu June 8, 2013, 8:22 am

    It’s a nice story, which has touched me… , I liked it …..:)

  • Edlor June 1, 2013, 9:18 pm

    It’s the kind of story I usually share to my students. The inspired look on their faces makes my day =)

  • Farhat May 30, 2013, 2:07 am

    Marvelous story.

  • Yassen May 25, 2013, 2:06 pm

    I like it very much.

  • Anoop.K.Francis May 24, 2013, 11:51 am

    Really gorgeous storry.. Nowadays those peoples (like the young clerk) are declining.. My gratitudes to Mr. Stephen..

  • Gayathri May 23, 2013, 9:36 am


  • Raji May 18, 2013, 4:14 am

    Very nice 🙂 I just love it 🙂

  • Prasurjya May 11, 2013, 11:26 pm

    Just super….I have been so inspired by your moral stories ever since I got to know your site…keep going sir…god bless…

  • Jayashankar May 10, 2013, 2:21 am

    Thank You very much for sharing this Story. Its really very good one.

  • Anoj Agarwala May 10, 2013, 1:38 am

    Excellent ………. story we should not say, as these are the inspiration which every body should follow irrespective of thinking about any benefits. Such story should be a part of curriculum of every school at a very early age and then only we can expect a ridiculous change across the globe.

  • Genesis May 8, 2013, 7:23 pm

    That was a beautiful story. Thanx.

  • FL May 7, 2013, 9:33 am

    A very good story. One good turn deserves another. It’s good to do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

  • Aljean May 7, 2013, 2:46 am

    Nice! Thanks for the story.. Wonderful:)

  • Karen Hersom May 7, 2013, 2:01 am

    Thanks for that story. I do love the kind things that go on behind the scenes I thought I was the only one doing those kind of services. Keep up the good work. Hope to hear a lot more. Karen.

  • Jay May 7, 2013, 1:07 am


  • leena mukundan May 6, 2013, 10:09 pm

    That was indeed a wonderful one. Thanks a lot.

  • Ej May 6, 2013, 8:20 pm


  • Teresa May 6, 2013, 7:35 pm

    Nice story, although it is quite a bit embellished. Also, the Waldorf and the Astoria were two separate hotels back then. However, the moral here is that a single act of kindness or generosity can change lives. You are a pebble in a pond causing ripples into eternity. Be generous! Be kind!

  • K S S Mallikharjuna Sarma May 6, 2013, 9:48 am

    Thanks a lot, I have shared the story with my friends.

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