Beachhouse Hotel Manager Laura: “We have delivered a great performance with a completely new team”
A year ago Beachhouse Hotel in Zandvoort opened its doors. This was a historical moment, because in 22 years there had not opened a hotel in this popular seaside resort. Manager Laura Scholten was there from the start. We interviewed her how she has experienced this first year.
How did you find your job at the Beachhouse Hotel?
“I applied for a position at SugarCity Events over a year ago. SugarCity Events is just like Beachhouse Hotel, part of the Cobraspen Group. They then told me about their latest concept which they were launching in July: Beachhouse Hotel. In 2016 the Cobraspen Group received a permit to transform the property at Boulevard Barnaart 59E into a boutique hotel. They did realised this in good cooperation with the municipality of Zandvoort. At the time the renovation was still ongoing, but the hotel would open soon. So they were also looking for staff members for Beachhouse Hotel. I just graduated from the Hotelschool and during my internship I had particitpated in the organization of the opening of a hotel in Amsterdam. So Beachhouse Hotel seemed to be the perfect match. I could immediately start with the preparations for the opening. I really felt involved from the start. This first year went by incredibly fast.”
What is your position at the Beachhouse Hotel?
“I am the manager of the Beachhouse Hotel. A role that has really taken shape in the past year. You probably can imagine that during the first few months we were in a constant optimalisation process to discover the best way to realise a successful hotel that could offer our guests the ultimate seaside experience. During this process I got more and more tasks and responsibilities. It is a great challenge every day to make sure that everything runs smoothly. That our guests are satisfied and the different departments work well together. I am extremely grateful that I have been given the opportunity to show my capacities and my goal remains to further optimize our services.”
What does a working day looks like for you?
“As is the case in every hotel, every day is different at Beachhouse Hotel. That is also what makes the job so much fun. I have a lot of contact with guests, but I also work on different tasks behind the scenes. In the morning, I provide breakfast for our guests. That is one of the best moments of the day. I enjoy talking to our guests, because I am curious how they experience their stay and if they maybe need some tips. For example, about excursions or good restaurants near Beachhouse Hotel. I live in Zandvoort myself, so I know the area well. After that I place orders for breakfast, office supplies … you name it. I also check the hotel rooms on quality cleaning, any defect items and possible other defects. A clean and well-functioning room is, in my opinion, the most important. If necessary I contact our own technical department to schedule an appointment for the work that needs to be done. I also maintain contact with online travel agencies such as Booking.com, manage the reception team, carry out check-in and check-out of our guests, and I am responsible for handling any complaints.”
What do you like most about your job?
“Of course I am proud of the hotel itself, it looks beautiful. And the location at seashore, you can’t find that anywhere else in the Netherlands. Because it is a small-scale hotel, you also have a lot of contact with the guests. With some you really bond. Furthermore – as I think this interview shows – it is a very dynamic working environment. Not one day is the same. And on top of that I work with a great team with whom I can completely be myself. That means that work does not really feels like work.”
The Beachhouse Hotel celebrates its first anniversary. How did you experience this first year?
“The first year was of course full of challenges, but it was great to see all developments from up close. We have delivered a great performance with a completely new team. That gives us confidence for the future. I hope we have made sure – and will ensure – that guests return to Beachhouse Hotel. Recently our event location on the ground floor – Aquarama Beachclub – also opened its doors and is now available for weddings, parties and business events. We are thereby operation on a new market. And if guests like to stay for the night after an event, that is of course no problem. Recently an article appeared on the platform High Profile Events, which is great to read. My colleague Fleur Sikkes is responsible for the event location.”
“I also work with a great team with whom I can completely be myself. That means that work does not really feels like work.”
What opportunities do you see for the coming year?
“It’s all about experience in the hotel branch. We notice that the consumer find this more and more important.. Whether or not there is a tissue box available in the room, that is no longer that important. As a hotel you have to think about that too. Since the opening of the terrace, for example, we regularly receive the reaction from guests that the terrace really contributes to the beach experience. But during their stay guests also receive a pair of sunglasses at Beachhouse. We offer just that extra bit. It is great to see that Zandvoort also recognizes this importance. More and more events are organized, ofcourse the circuit and their racing events play a role in this. Another example is the Jumbo Racing Days with Max Verstappen. We can also anticipate to this. We experience this as a positive ‘trend’ which we hope will continue. For us the task to engage and continue to think about new opportunities to let our guest experience an ultimate time at the seaside.”
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