In this exclusive interview with Mr. Peter Ubutu, Operations Manager for CitiHeight Hotel, he sheds light on the hotel and tourism landscape in Nigeria, exceeding customers (guests) expectations and qualities/skills needed to excel in the industry. Enjoy.
What is CitiHeight Hotel?
As a Hotel Operations Manager, Mr Peter Ubutu generally overseas the entire operations of the hotel, which include the sales and finance operations, food and beverages department, public relations and the creation and supervision of employee roasters and work schedules, amongst other functions. A mixture of guests from different parts of the country and even overseas grace the Citiheight hotel, and as the operations manager, he ensures that all within the hotel works efficiently to meet the needs of each guest. The hotel itself is equipped with top-of-the-line and state-of-the-art facilities, some of which include cozy and well air-conditioned rooms, 24/7 internet access, reliable power supply, a swimming pool, restaurant and bar, a gym and even a spa. These facilities provide exciting activities for guests to engage in at their leisure times, and to top is all, the hotel offers a complementary buffet breakfast for guests to savour and enjoy, either before, after or as they engage in these exciting and fun activities.
Tips on Giving Customers a Memorable Experience
“As a hotel administrator, in your service to clients, you cannot leave anything to chance,” says Mr Peter when asked about what makes Citiheight hotel’s service unique, and in that statement is a very useful tip for students and upcoming hotel administrators to take note of. “It is important to try to give a very memorable experience to guests by way of quality service”, he continued and gave an example of how he went above and beyond to service the need of a guest one fateful night.
The guest desperately needed his medication, and because it was night time, there was no pharmacy open to provide the needed medicine. Mr Peter went beyond the call of duty and leveraged on his relationship with one of the major pharmacy operators in Nigeria to get the pharmacy open at night and purchase the needed medication for the guest. To paraphrase his exact words, from that night, that guest became a loyal patron of the hotel. This willingness to not leave anything to chance, to go above and beyond to meet the needs of guests with exceptional friendliness, and to provide superb luxury facilities to guests is what Mr Peter believes makes Citiheight hotel unique compared to other hotels.
Qualities of a Good Hotel Administrator
Additionally, Mr. Peter Ubutu advised students and upcoming hotel administrators to work on having excellent human relations and to ensure they remain truthful to guests and employees at all times. He added that an impeccable dress sense is also necessary to make a good impression because ‘you dress the way you want to be addressed’. For him, it is also important to be humble, regardless of your age, so you will be able to relate with people well and properly understand their needs.
Moving on to what his opinion on the Lagos experience is, Mr Peter describes it as fantastic, exciting and dynamic with a great nightlife and very good food. It is an experience he believes guests to Lagos will fully enjoy.
Finally for fun, Mr Peter likes to meet and greet. This manifests in how he is always eager to meet guests, talk to them to gauge their needs, understand them and effectively meet these needs. He also likes to read in his spare time and is currently taking courses on LinkedIn to enhance his organizational and managerial skills. The top tourist destinations in Lagos that he recommends for visitation include the beach, Onikan Museum, the Oba’s Palace, Nike Art Gallery, Kalakuta House and the Mall.