Your definition of hospitality?
Providing everybody with a warm welcome and taking care of the guests to the best of your abilities, while exceeding expectations whenever possible.
What does sustainability mean to you?
To me it means acting with thinking. Every decision should have a strong plan behind it highlighting that only necessary has been used and that ideally it will have a long lifetime.
Team or staff, and why?
Team. I look at the staff as the team. Everyone needs a team to be successful. We are there to support and motivate each other. We are stronger together.
Where do you see hospitality’s priorities?
Taking care of employees and providing flexibility to team members is extremely important and it has become more relevant now than ever before. In hospitality, if employees are being looked after, guests will be looked after. Thanks to pandemic, more of the values are being prioritised. People are finding more ways to spend time with their loved ones and focus on themselves. For employer it is now a priority to make sure that those needs are being met. It is beautiful and I am excited to see where it will lead hospitality. Long hours and small pay is not acceptable anymore.
Is hospitality local or global?
Definitely and absolutely global, but always with a local touch. Hospitality is in every corner of the world as it is part of everyday life. Though, places that provide hospitality with their local twist and using local finest, are the sustainable and successful ones. Guests are always looking for authenticity.
What’s best about your weekend?
It is different every single week. Most of the time I am out and about, often to new places. Though, when I need my own time, I can always do that. Though, lately, thanks to Institute of Hospitality, I always find a new activity to do or an event to attend.
I relax by…
Going to seaside. I was born on an island, therefore that always sooths. Otherwise, I relax by sitting down with a book and a large cup of tea.
Eat out or eat in?
Absolutely eat out! I love discovering new places and trying different foods. Every place has its own atmosphere and uniqueness.
Tea or coffee?
Tell us something about yourself that would surprise our readers.
I am from a very small country called Estonia, up in the northeast Europe. Though, I moved out from there when I was 19 and have lived in 3 different continents since then. I have been in most European countries as well as to 30 different states in the USA. Most places, even just the cities have been bigger than my whole country, but it is very exciting to experience it all. Thanks to all travelling I can speak 2 languages fluently and understand 4 languages. With a little practice, I will be fluent in other 2 as well!Katariina Reissar, graduate manager at the Leonardo Royal Grand Harbour Southampton – Seat Member of Institute of Hospitality Youth Council
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