JOHN COLEMAN started his first week as the concierge manager for Fota Island Resort with the specific aim of “turning moments into memories” for all the guests.
The 52-year-old Killeagh man most recently worked as the head concierge at The Metropole Hotel with whom he enjoyed “great times”.
“I would have been there four years this August. It was a great experience and it was a fantastic journey. I built up a fantastic relationship with all the businesses and attractions in Cork,” he said.
Mr Coleman was honoured with three awards during his tenure working at The Metropole Hotel and said it was great to ‘be recognised’ for doing his job.
“In my first year, I won the Business Cork Customer Service Award. The following year I won the Trigon Hotels Customer Service Award, which is held internally between the hotels in the group.
“Last year I won the Concierge of the Year for Munster and Ireland at the Irish Hotels Awards 2020. That was a huge honour.
“I have since been accepted onto the Clef d’Or Ireland,which currently has 50 members in Ireland and 3,000 globally. I will receive my golden keys at their next AGM,” he added.
Mr Coleman said the role of a concierge has become even more important since the outbreak of the global pandemic, as they provide extra reassurance for guests.
Well-known Cork concierge wins top hospitality award https://t.co/0hGKwab3GM— EchoLive.ie (@echolivecork) June 24, 2020
“When hotels reopened in July last year, our role was hugely important. Everything now requires bookings in advance so it is very reassuring for guests to have that help.”
The concierge manager officially started his new role at Fota Island Resort on May 24. He has enjoyed his first few days working with a ‘fantastic team’.
“I hit the ground running at 9am last Monday. It is so guest-focused. Everybody gets a five-star experience. There is a fantastic team here. Everybody has been so welcoming. I can’t wait to welcome everybody to Fota.
“I saw a person walking with a suitcase recently in the city and I nearly grabbed it.
“It is a very magical place. There is something for everybody. When you come in the gates, it just feels so special. It is very enclosed, spacious, and safe.”
Mr Coleman is delighted to start the role as it ‘represents a new chapter’.
“I am very excited. It is a progression. It is a great opportunity. It is a dream job. It is a fantastic career opportunity for me to work in a five-star resort 15 minutes from my home,” he said.
Fota Island Resort is scheduled to reopen on Wednesday, June 2. They currently employ 320 people with this number due to rise to 400 in the coming weeks. The concierge manager is looking forward to a busy summer.
“I am very positive about this summer. We have very strong bookings for the coming months. It is going to be very busy with staycations. We have a number of repeat guests which is always a good sign. There is great excitement.”
In Fota, as in other hotels around Cork, huge work is being done to prepare for a safe and enjoyable reopening.
“The team has engaged in a lot of preparation work ahead of the reopening,” Mr Coleman said. “There have been great changes. It is all about enhancing the guest experience.
“The guests will feel even safer this summer in all establishments due to the vaccination roll-out and the training we have received.”
Mr Coleman said the resort has lots of exciting activities planned to cater for people of all ages.
“This summer we have some new activities. These include watersports, orienteering, and family adventure with a new treasure hunt and a puzzle-solving game called Cabin Fever. Guests can book one-on-one tennis lessons with a coach or they can book the courts for a game with family and friends.
“The Fairies are looking forward to welcoming back all their little friends to the resort this summer. There is also a brand new Braai barbecue and Movie Nights that will take place in Fota House in August. There is so much to do in Fota,” he said.