Coronavirus Diaries: Resident manager at Park Hyatt & Dubai Creek

Luis Cobo talks restaurant plans and learning to DJ

Luis Cobo
Luis Cobo

6:45am – I normally wake up between 06:00 and 06:45 and I have a homemade shot of ginger and turmeric made by my wife who is a soon to be certified nutrition coach. The shot along with lots of water keeps me going for the entire day as I don’t drink coffee.  Before I get ready I do a quick scroll of emails, late night messages and go through the news headlines in Dubai, Spain and UK.

8:00am – Time to hit the road and start the day. Normally I call a team member on my way to work to get updates and get the day started.

09:00am - Morning meeting with the leadership team. We’ve temporally closed the hotel and there is only a small core team currently working until we reopen. A lot to go through…

10:00am – I meet with the residential team to organise the day as well as doing a round of calls to our long term tenants. We have 92 villas in the complex of which 16 are holiday homes and 76 are for long term. The villas are extremely busy these days, guests feel the need to reconnect with their families in a private environment, they truly appreciate the space, nature and services that we offer. There are also families that due the current situation have not been able to travel back to their home countries and they’ve been staying us for months. Every day we are in constant communication with the culinary team as well as the operational teams brainstorming ways to make them feel at home during these difficult times. 

1:30pm - Lunch time.  Great opportunity to reconnect with team members. I normally try to engage with a different colleague every day. I try not to speak about work and really try to connect on a personal level with the team. (With social distancing, of course) It is extremely humbling to see how positive and motivated the teams are during these times.

2:30pm – We catch up with the employees that are currently at home. What would we have done without Zoom during Covid-19?

4:00pm – Engineering and landscaping walk around. As the hotel is closed there are a lot of procedures to follow, we spend a lot of time walking the property checking on systems and brainstorming ideas of projects that can positively impact the destination when we reopen. We are also working on a very exciting restaurant at our lagoon beach which I’m sure will make some noise in the city.

6:00pm – Last emails and phone call catch up. We are staying very connected to our regular guests around the world. Every day we call or email a few of them to check on their health and wellbeing. They are all eager to return to Dubai. All our regular guests are like family to us they’ve really shown how much they care for the staff and the property. We’ve had some remarkable gestures… we have a resident who bakes a cake every day for the staff for the last two months.

7:00pm – I make my way back home. I made a promise that I would learn a new skill during Covid-19 lockdown, I have a passion for music and I’m fortunate that my neighbor is a DJ so I’ve started a DJ course two months ago. I combine the evenings between DJing and working out.  I haven’t told the team about my new hobby but I’m sure they will be surprised when I spin the decks in the next staff party (Hopefully soon).

9:00pm – Dinner time. Normally these days my wife cooks for us with the exception of one day per week and we enjoy a takeout (cheat day. I do the dishes though.

10:00pm – 10:30pm normally it would be the time an average Spaniard would start dinner, in my case I go to bed at around that time. I really value a great night’s sleep.

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