I was 15 years old. It was just the beginning of summer. I was strolling through the Town Hall Square in Tallinn (hint: I am Estonian) when I caught a glimpse of the terrace of Café Anglais, one of the top dining places in the capital at the time. I had heard that some folks from my school were working there. So I thought, what the heck, and marched in announcing that I wanted a waitressing gig. Since I was so determined and spoke like five languages, the owners, a Swedish woman and an Irish man, couldn't really turn me down. I started the next morning.
It is the hardest job I've had thus far (and mind you, I did a 6 year stint in Investment Banking). Being on your feet for sixteen hours straight, listening to endless complaints from clients, and dealing with incompetent staff -> I was determined to return one day to make a difference. For the staff and for the clients. And now I am on the path of doing exactly that.
But the one aspect of the job that I enjoyed tremendously was hospitality. In the midst of arguing with pastry chefs and yelling at the bar lady, customers were frequenting the café like crazy as it provided an experience that mattered. They felt good. And I was part of creating that feeling.
That is why after studying Economics and working in banking I decided to return to hospitality because for me that industry has meaning and a deeper sense of purpose, something that 100-hour weeks in cubicle hell, albeit with a very nice pay-check, never had. And I know that many people in our industry feel the same way.
I have been extremely privileged to have lived in seven countries and travelled to a hundred more. Throughout those travels I have met incredible chefs, designers, restaurateurs, hoteliers, baristas, marketers and storytellers who I will continue to work with in order to provide unforgettable experiences and world-class services to my clients.
Download my full credentials HERE.
eMBA, Hospitality Administration
École hôtelière de Lausanne (EHL)
Switzerland | 2013 - 2014
Bachelor of Arts, Economics & Business
New York University
Italy and USA | 2003 - 2007
Consulting Editor, Supper Magazine
Since January 2017
Board Member, EHL Alumni Great Britain Stamm
Since Oct 2015
Advisory Board Member, Boutique Hotel and Lifestyle Summit
Since Aug 2015
Advisory Board Member, Global Restaurant Investment Forum
Since July 2015
Co-Founder, Hyatt Student Prize Alumni
Since March 2015