It has been almost four months since I started my first internship at Occidental Hotel El Embajador in the Dominican Republic. So, I thought now would be a good time to update the readers of our student blog with my second post (you can read my first blog here).
Since my last post, I have changed departments twice. First, I worked in the Business Center Department, followed by the Commercial Banqueting Department and now I am in the Reservations Department. Even though I have gone through various areas within these three departments already and learned a great deal about hotel operations, I still cannot say which I like the most.
The truth is I have enjoyed all three experiences so far. It’s no wonder when, during my last day of work in the Business Center, my coworkers surprised me with a very thoughtful gesture. They actually remembered me mentioning during my first week that passion fruit was my favorite fruit of all. So, on my last day they showed up with a delicious passion fruit cake and a personal letter from the three of them.
My colleagues in the Business Center were always saying that I could never stay calm. They were right, considering I always have to do something to keep myself from getting bored during slow periods. This is why I came up with a little project for the department that everyone was grateful for – I used the paper that was going to be thrown away and I recycled it by making little notepads for all of my coworkers to use. Sometimes it’s the small details that count.
After moving on to the Commercial Banqueting Department, I learned the processes of renting the hotel’s event rooms inside and outside the hotel. These rooms are usually rented for weddings, birthday parties or cocktails. One of my responsibilities was to give the clients detailed price packages based on the requirements for their particular event. For instance, coffee break options, diverse menus and catering services, decoration services, sound systems and multimedia projectors (if needed any), etcetera.
In hindsight, I feel that the Banqueting Department is a little more demanding than the other areas I have interned in thus far, mostly due to the fact that it is not the same constant work. In banqueting there was no time for notepad type projects, as the fast pace of the department always ensured I had something different to do.
On the other hand, the Reservations Department where I am currently working, could be considered more monotonous. My work here involves administrative duties that include answering telephone calls, responding to customer emails, filing the hotel’s reservations by date and authorizing discounts for the guests.
Since I am very active and always willing to learn, my supervisor, Aurora Sagredo, stopped me one day and told me that I was not like the other interns that had gone through her department. She said that the interns were always either on their cell phones or quiet, Needless to say, it was clear that I don’t like being bored and I’m not quiet or shy, so I felt honored when Ms. Sagredo actually offered me a job when I finish my studies!
Now, I still have nearly two months remaining of my internship in the Dominican Republic and at the moment I’m getting ready for training in my fourth department of the hotel. Next up is the Food & Beverage Department, what many see as the heart and sould of a hotel. I’m confident that I’ll be able to handle this job well since F&B was the focus of what I learned in my classes last semester at Les Roches Marbella.
F&B is the last department I will be working in during my internship at the Embajador so I am very excited to give 100% of my attitude and energy. As my internship enters its final phase, I will keep you posted with any updates.
(Cristina Reynoso is a Les Roches Marbella Student Ambassador. To learn more about our Student Ambassadors, please read the article here.)
Related articles: My First Hotel Internship Experience, Part 1