New staff at St Regis to get intensive training course
New hires will get an intensive hospitality training course before the St Regis Hotel opens in May, it was revealed yesterday.
Arianna Hodgson, the Junior Minister of Labour, said that more about 90 Bermudian new staff were expected to start work at the St George’s resort in the first phase of recruitment.
She added that they would be put through the School of St Regis as early as the end of April to learn basic hospitality skills and specialised services.
David Burt, the Premier, said that a casino licence for the hotel had not yet been approved and was unable to comment on when it would be.
Mr Burt added: “The regulatory authorities, such as the Bermuda Monetary Authority, and Bermuda Casino Gaming Commission, are independent of the Government of Bermuda, so it would be inappropriate for me as a minister of Government or other persons who are engaged in the regulatory process to speak on that.”
Mr Burt and Ms Hodgson were speaking on the grounds of the Cabinet Building on Front Street.
They were joined by Jan Vanhaelewyn, the general manager of St Regis and Laura Purroy, the general manager of parent firm Hotelco.
Ms Hodgson said that the School of St Regis, a joint programme set up by the hotel and the labour ministry, would include online and face-to-face classes, as well as on-the-job learning after the hotel opened.
She added: “All teachings are designed to ensure the associates know the brand’s culture and that they are consistent with the delivery of services.
“At the conclusion of the programme, the learning received will have enhanced the skills and knowledge required to drive business results and lead teams in a diverse and changing environment.”
Ms Hodgson said that the labour ministry and St Regis would also offer the Take Care programme to ensure that staff had access to physical and mental health resources, as well as career development and financial planning advice.
She said that management expected “tremendous interest on island” in jobs at the new hotel.
Ms Hodgson appealed to job hunters to contact the Department of Workforce Development for the latest opportunities.
She added that training and development programmes were available to train people in hospitality, technology, horticulture and other sectors.
Mr Vanhaelewyn said that the hotel expected almost half of its rooms to be occupied in the first ten days of business.
He added that was “incredible for an opening hotel”.
Mr Vanhaelewyn said that experienced staff from the St Regis chain would travel to the island to coach staff on the “values” of the group ten days before it opened.