Back-of-house Interview: Meet Media One's director of operations
Hotelier Middle East speaks with Media One’s Lukas Tremmel in Dubai about his hospitality journey
Briefly describe your job
As director of operations my main and most important role is to make sure that all of our guests have the very best stay possible! Once the guests are happy my next responsibility is to take care of my team of over 100 members of staff from 22 different countries. A happy team generally means a happy customer. Last but most definitely not least I have a responsibility to drive bottom line for the business and ensure that the hotel asset is looked after to the highest possible standards.
How did your hospitality journey begin?
I have always been attracted to the interconnectedness of the hospitality industry, dealing with all kinds of people from all kinds of backgrounds. When I was 14, I completed an internship and from that point it was love. From there I moved on to work and study in Greece, France, Spain, USA, Mexico and other parts of Europe and I never looked back; hospitality for me was love at first sight.
After graduating from university, I moved to the UAE with Starwood Group and started my Dubai hospitality career with Vita Futura, Starwood’s former graduate management program which allowed me to gain exposure across various departments. After being part the reopening team of Le Meridien Mina Seyahi, the Westin Dubai and the reopening of Sheraton Dubai Creek I joined Jumeirah Group. I spent the last three years working at Jumeirah Creekside, where I was heading up the rooms division until December 2018 before joining Media One as Director of Hotel Operations.
Name a hospitality professional who inspires you?
I am lucky to have worked with a number of inspiring hospitality leaders. The most recent one was Luke James, who is now General Manager at Zabeel House. I was able to work with him at Jumeirah Creekside Hotel and his hands-on management style and humble approach towards are characteristics that I have tried to emulate in my own leadership style.
Name three biggest challenges in your job
One of the biggest challenges has been adapting to the work style at Media One, where there is much more autonomy and flexibility than in my previous properties. Initially I found this more challenging to adapt to, but after six months of working at Media One I enjoy these opportunities to be more creative.
The second one is that online guest review sites mean that guests are able to quickly write feedback, perhaps without even giving you a chance to resolve the issue. However, we combat this by making sure that we are highly engaged with the customer at all steps of the journey – they know that they can talk to us and we will be happy to help them out.
Finally, I would say that the city is booming with the opening of many new properties so hotel operators are facing tough competition in attracting a bigger share of the region’s market and inevitably this is impacting the ability to sell at higher rates. Therefore, the challenge lies with the operations team to deliver and fulfil guests’ expectations ensuring a great stay, which in turn, enables our revenue team to maximise the value of this stay through our rate strategy
Piece of advice: There are no secrets to success. It is the result of preparation, hard work and learning from failure.
Meal: Kung Pao chicken.
Destination: Coron Island in northern Palawan in the Philippines.
Motto: Luck is an attitude.
Hobby: River fly fishing.