The Antigua & Barbuda Hotels and Tourism Association (ABHTA) is excited to announce the commencement of a compelling thirteen-week project, leading up to the celebration of Tourism Week 2023, aptly named “Unveiling Hospitality Professionals.”
This initiative will embark on an exciting journey deep into the heart of the dynamic hospitality industry, shedding light on its often-unsung heroes—the dedicated individuals who infuse life and vitality into the sector.
Throughout this profound journey of spotlighting hospitality employees, we will immerse ourselves in their diverse backgrounds, personal triumphs, and unwavering pursuit of excellence.
Whether their roots are traced back to humble beginnings or they have honed their craft through years of dedication, these hospitality professionals have committed themselves to the industry’s growth.
The inaugural feature of this series introduces Michelle Seaforth, Deputy General Manager at Mill Reef Club. Michelle’s journey into the world of hospitality began at a tender age, inspired by her mother’s role as the Room Division Manager at Jolly Beach Resort. Her mother’s vivid narratives about guests, events, and team interactions always captivated Michelle’s imagination.
Reflecting on her early experiences, Michelle recalls, “My occasional visits to Jolly Beach further sparked my interest in the industry. The warm and welcoming atmosphere, from the reception desk’s greetings, to the chef’s live omelet station, left a lasting impression on me. It was brimming with joy and energy. During those visits, I realized that I wanted to be a part of the hospitality industry.”
Michelle’s path to her current position as Deputy General Manager at Mill Reef Club was marked by resilience and the principle of “stoop to conquer,” instilled by her father. She embarked on her career as a janitor after completing her studies at Johnson & Wales University in Miami.
The concept of climbing the ladder from the ground up resonated with Michelle as she put her degree in Travel Tourism and Hospitality Management with a minor in Food and Beverage to practical use.
Today, Michelle oversees six departments—Reception, Housekeeping, Reservations, Beach and Gardens, Maintenance, and House Rentals—in her most senior role to date.
Craig Marshall, Chairman of the ABHTA, emphasized the importance of sharing stories like Michelle’s to inspire the next generation of Antiguan and Barbudan talent, aspiring to reach the highest echelons of the hospitality industry. He expressed the ABHTA’s commitment to launching this project with the hope that primary and secondary students will gain insights into the diverse facets of the hospitality sector.
Over the next several weeks, this project will unveil inspiring stories of individuals engaged in various sectors, including hotel operations, taxi services, yachting, tours, and vendor businesses, spotlighting remarkable success stories within Antigua and Barbuda’s vibrant hospitality industry.
The Unveiling Hospitality Professionals project commences on September 12, with one inspiring narrative released each week.
Together, let us be inspired, moved, and enlightened as we uncover the extraordinary stories of those who have embraced hospitality as their lifelong passion.
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