Restaurant table booking

Yann Gouriou

January 2016

How long have you been with Aleenta Resort & Spa Phuket – Phang Nga? What attracted you to the job?
I returned to Thailand in December 2010 to my current role at Aleenta Phuket - Phang Nga resort. I was attracted by the Phuket lifestyle.

What were you doing & where were you living before?
I was resident Manager at Bermuda’s illustrious Cambridge Beaches Resort & Spa.

Where are you from?
I was born in Lyon France, but grew up in a little town in Provence.

What’s special or different about Aleenta Resort & Spa Phuket – Phang Nga? What are its unique points?
Aleenta is located on Phuket’s beautiful Natai Beach, intimate and private, yet just 25 minutes from the airport. It's perfect for a romantic getaway, honeymoon and intimate wedding celebration, or a wonderful place to just take some time off with your loved ones.

Why would someone choose to use your service compared to your closest competition?
We cater to guests looking for a different experience of Phuket from, say, one they would find in Patong or Kata. Our location is one of our unique selling points and our beach is certainly one of the most beautiful in the south of Thailand.

Tell us something about your role in the business?
I coach a team of 160 employees who look to me when they need support or guidance. I try to inspire them to ensure that they deliver a very personalised service to our guests.

What are the main challenges as they relate to your role?
The main challenge is to stay on top and not fall into an easy routine. Hospitality is an ever-evolving business; the expectations of our guests are ever evolving...

What is your main target market?
The demographic of our guests varies from season to season. During the high season our guests are mainly from Europe, while during the low season our guests will fly in from around the Asia Pacific region.

What is your approach to marketing Aleenta Resort & Spa Phuket-Phang Nga to your target?
Aleenta has always been quite strong in marketing itself online and through our Sales Representatives in different countries; approximately 60% of our reservations are direct booking or via SLH (Small Luxury Hotels).

What do you hope to achieve within the next 3-5 years?
I certainly hope to continue to enhance our product and services, develop the brand and continue to enjoy myself at work.

What do you see as your biggest successes to date?
My two children from a personal perspective, but if you were referring to work I would say that − although not a personal achievement − I am particularly proud of all the corporate social responsibility initiatives that we have undertaken to date.

Since it opened its doors, Aleenta has supported a number of environmentally friendly projects, such as the protection of indigenous leatherback turtles. More recently, through the Pure Blue Foundation, we have helped rebuild the coral reef off the coast of AKARYN Samui, one of our sister hotels.

Please give us an overview of your typical day ‘at work’.
I usually get to the hotel at around 8.30, we have a morning briefing with the heads of departments to outline the day ahead and from that moment routine does not exist anymore.

How would you describe your leadership style?
I tend to use the style required for a specific situation but, as a whole, I would say “participative”. I like to engage my team in discussion; hospitality is all about empowering your employees, building their confidence to allow them to take ownership of a given situation.

What is your over-riding ambition at this stage in your life?
“Live neither in the past nor in the future, but let each day's work absorb your entire energies, and satisfy your widest ambition.” − William Osler

For further information about Aleenta Resort and Spa
33 Moo 5, Kok Kloy, Takua Tung, Phang Nga