Saturday, November 17, 2007


Just a few months ago I started this adventure as a GM. In the beginning I couldn't admit that I was a GM instead of a Sales Manager. I thought of it as just a trail, but I fell in love with managing the team and have found it to be very natural. It's odd to me, but I must be doing something right. The hotel has exceeded the companies expectations and the teams seem to have made a major turn in the right direction.

When I first started with this company it was at a smaller hotel in the same town up the road. That hotel is beautiful and has always had a special place in my heart. We still own it and it's always done well, that's the reason they purchased the hotel I run. Unfortunately, the hotel's occupancy has slipped a little and they have been having some minor issues. So Monday I received a phone call from the corporate office. They need me to manage that hotel also and help bring it back up to where it was. So now I will be managing two hotels in one town. I'm excited but nervous. I just got my hotel running smoothly and now I have another to turn around. So another 6 months of long hours and hard work, but it really is a great opportunity. It's the best possible thing for my career and I hope I can make a positive difference.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

I'm in Shock

Before I begin, let me just point out that the hotel front desk team calls me for just about everything. They call me if they have trouble making and reservation, can't find their pay check or can't remember what day the work. The Night Auditor has always been the worst offender. He called me one night at 1 am, because he didn't see his pay check in the drawer.

So today is Tuesday, I took Monday off to do a little training for the Triathlon. I had noticed that the phone has been very quiet and the hotel has not called me all weekend. I just assumed everything was running smoothly. Not so much.....

I get to the hotel about 7:30, I greet my team and open the door to my office. On the floor is a note from the night auditor. I won't go into detail but the note stated that on Friday night (4 days ago) I guest died in their room.

Yes, DIED. A young man and his friends partied a little too hard and one friend finally called 911 after he vomited blood everywhere and died. The Paramedics came and pronounced him dead and left his body in the room. The Coroner came back at 6 am and picked him up. So the entire weekend the Housekeeping and maintenance cleaned the room for hours and I was home, just living my life.

When I spoke to the auditor today, he was convinced that he had left a message for someone "but maybe it wasn't me."

So you can call me if you can't find your paycheck but you can't remember to call when someone dies.......Interesting.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Not Hotel Related

Two weeks ago my sister completed her first Triathlon. It was fun to watch her cross the finish line and I have always dreamed of doing one.
So, I have been training for the last two weeks. The swim is a half mile, bike is 14 miles and the run is 3.5 miles. The swim and the run should be no problem, but I am a little worried about the bike. In fact, until Sunday I didn't even own a bike. Tony has been really supportive and wants me to reach this goal, so he took me to the bike store to pick out my bike.

I had no idea just how expensive good road bikes were. Tony insisted that I get whatever bike I needed so I came home with a beautiful Specialized Ruby Comp. I think the bike might weigh less than two pounds. It's carbon fiber with special gel inserts to take the edge of the pavement.

So last night I took it out on the bike path for the first time. It will be a couple weeks before I figure out the gears, but it was fun. My butt hurts a little today, but not as bad as it would have without the special padded butt shorts.

I'm excited to go through this process and I really hope I can be ready by Thanksgiving weekend for the triathlon.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


Can someone please tell me why people smoke in non-smoking rooms?

All our rooms have a balcony, if you need to smoke just walk out and close the sliding door. Not that hard. I spent $750.00 on a machine today that cleans out the smoke odor in rooms. I would have love to have spent that money on getting our treadmill fixed or adding a business center. However, I have recently had two groups that seem to really want to smoke in our none smoking rooms.

I really just don't understand people sometimes.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

A Hampton Inn

So it looks like we will be officially becoming a Hampton Inn. I am so excited for construction to start in January. The company has been spending the past few months deciding if we will be a Double Tree, Hilton Garden Inn or a Hampton Inn. I love Hampton's so I am very excited. While it would look great having a Double Tree on my resume, there is something really special about a Hampton. I love selling a hotel that offers complimentary breakfast, Internet and parking.

I'm not sure what we will do with the restaurant that is currently empty. I think I will find someone to lease it out. But I will know more in Jan.

The best part about renovating will be getting new beds. I got my 3rd complaint this week that the mattress springs were poking a guest back. Can you imagine, checking into a hotel and having the mattress springs poke your back? It's so embarrassing. However, we can't just get new mattresses. Hampton has specific mattresses we have to buy, so we need to wait until renovation. The Hampton beds are amazing. Since we already own a Hampton down the road, I bought the Hampton bed during that renovation. Love it.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

No, you can't just not show up for your shift

The hardest thing about being a manager is well, managing. Saturday night I was at my friends wedding, when my phone began to ring and ring and ring. It was a team member calling to tell me that they just didn't want to come to work tomorrow. Unfortunately each person works their shift alone, so if they don't go to work, I go to work for them. After I was very clear that he needed to show up unless he found someone to work his shift, he agreed to be present at 7 am.

Fast forward to today. I held a front desk meeting and explained the policy once again regarding attendance. I was pleased with the meeting and felt that everyone was on the same page.

Not so much, 20 minutes later I had someone come and let me know they couldn't work their Sunday shift. So now I am going to have to scramble to find a replacement or I will be stuck working another 7 day work week. ugh.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

Ahh Airfreshners!

The hotel hasn't been renovated in YEARS. So ever since I took over, I have been dealing with this odor. It's odor like if someone locked up an old room for years. It's musty and quite unpleasant. So for the last few months I have tried product after product to get the smell out. We also steam cleaned the carpets, washed walls, you name it, we have tried it. So finally I found an freshner thats a little film, you slip into the vent of the wall unit air conditioners. These babies are amazing and for the first time I'm getting compliments on how nice and clean my rooms smell.

Until today........

As I'm checking people out of the hotel this morning, a very fit couple dressed in tight bicycle pants comes to check out. As they check out I ask my signature "how was everything?" The woman begins to tell me that she had to have the maintenance man come to their room and "pull that nasty air freshner out. It's not that it didn't smell nice, those things things have chemcials and most likely cause cancer." "One day we will all have cancer and realize it's from hotel air freshners."
My jaw must have fallen open as a stared at her because she quickly told me her stay was fine and hurried out the door.

So now instead of making my customers happy, I guess I'm just trying to kill them off one by one. Everyday I realize, you truely cannot make everyone happy and it's best not to take things personally.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Hmm a blog

Please excuse my attempt at a somewhat entertaning blog. I'm new at this but perhaps it could be interesting. Why a blog? I feel like I have some interesting stories about my new gig as a General Manager of a hotel. Everyday seems to be a Journey as I go through the process of fixing up a run down hotel, managing a team from many different backgrounds, and trying to please every guest. Most of my stories revolve around the guest and their likeable qualities and not so likeable qualities.