Sure, I was born in Ireland and grew up mainly near the Curragh in Co.Kildare, where my father used to breed race horses. At a pretty early age I realized that I didn’t have a gift for horses and as I loved to travel, decided that working in hotels would be a great career choice. I studied in Switzerland and joined the industry in 1990 as a management trainee for Forte Hotels in London’s Grosvenor House Hotel. I’m married to Annie and have two boys Callum and Danny.
And how about your career to date?
I started out in Food and Beverage at the Watergate Hotel in Washington DC with Forte Hotels before transferring back to the UK and working with the same company in Stratford upon Avon and Torquay (No Fawlty Towers comments please). I joined Marriott in 2000 at the JW Marriott in Kuwait and have since held General Manager positions in Hawaii and most recently at the Renaissance Hotel in Seoul.
That’s difficult to say. I believe I have a good track record in generating new business opportunities at the previous hotels where I have worked and generally have been quite successful at adapting to the people and places of wherever life has taken me. Like so many of my colleagues the chance to live and work in Thailand has always been a dream so I feel extremely fortunate to have this opportunity.
How do you think the job here will compare with others?
Moving from a city center property to a resort environment certainly requires a different focus. There is perhaps
an even greater responsibility managing a resort as we have to recognize that in most cases our guests have planned their trip for a long time, maybe for a honeymoon or a once in a lifetime family holiday. As such we have to work hard to ensure that their dream holiday exceeds expectations in the hope that they will share their experiences with friends and family and hopefully one day return.
I would say ensuring all guests experience the holiday they hoped for. We have guests with very different needs whether they are families with young children, couples on honeymoon or retirees. Ensuring that we have personalized and tailored experiences around the resort that will support the needs of all our guests will always be my primary
Is there any aspect of your job that you like more then the other and why?
Anything and everything that keeps me out of the office, whether connecting with guests around the resort or attending associate events. It’s very important to be visible and accessible to guests and associates and this can only be achieved by regularly walking the resort.
What do you think are the most important aspects of your job?
I would say communicating clearly and consistently is the most important aspect of my job. Sharing the vision for the hotel in a way that is readily understood will hopefully ensure we deliver great guest experiences consistently.
What are the biggest obstacles you come up against in your job and how do you overcome them?
I would not say there are obstacles, but as in every new assignment the most important first step is to learn as much as possible about the local culture and to respect and adapt to that culture as quickly as possible. A much smarter person than me once said that wisdom begins in wonder and I think that by being naturally curious and asking questions just about everything can be overcome.
Do you have a personal goal now that you are here at the JW Marriott Phuket?
Beyond the business goals, I hope I have the opportunity to travel a little in Thailand and South East Asia generally.
What do you do in your spare time, if you have any?
Not too much at the moment for sure however my real passion is Soccer/Football whether watching it or playing
it badly. I don’t mind the odd game of golf either.