If you feel at home when staying at a hotel, it’s thanks to dedicated employees such as Rose-Anne Gabrielle, Director of Housekeeping at Hotel Le Germain, who ensures that your room is spotless when you open the door. Foray into the daily life of her team.
What qualities are required to become a room attendant?
There is an absolute need to be flexible. In hospitality, there are always unforeseen events, so you must be able to adapt to these situations and not be afraid of change. In my opinion, flexible people are enthusiastic about getting involved and like working in a team. It’s basic in this business.
Does this job really require being unusually physically fit?
Yes. It is a very difficult position physically. When I hire staff, I am not necessarily looking for someone with experience, but the person needs to be fit and well aware of the requirements of the tasks they will have to perform.
What can a room housekeeping attendant’s days look like?
Someone who works during the day will begin their day with a morning team meeting. This is the time when I give the day’s instructions and when I answer questions. Then the attendants begin by cleaning the rooms that have already been vacated: dusting, vacuuming, cleaning the bathroom and making the bed. As the day goes on, they will also move on to rooms that are still occupied. Sometimes they will cross paths with guests and have to answer their requests. It’s their job to make sure the rooms are spotless. In addition, in 4-star hotels, there is often a “turn down” service: attendants who work in the evening then take care of preparing the room for bedtime.
Atypical schedules are the lot of many employees working in the hospitality industry. What should someone new to the field expect?
As a general rule, when beginning in hospitality, you should expect to work weekends and be available day and night. Of course, after a few years, with 10, 15 or 20 years of seniority, employees will deserve weekends off, but a person who has just started will have very variable hours depending on the occupancy rate and needs of the hotel.