From 1993-2017 while working at UJA Federation, Director of Events, I planned close to 75 events at the hotel. To distill all these memories and choose just one as “the best” is impossible. Suffice it to say that every event there was an experience in grand hospitality and boy did I learn a lot!
Some of my favorite learnings included being shown the many short cuts in the back of house. Discovering something new was like earning a badge of honor.
My favorite short cut was taught to me by Tom Nevin, my first catering sales colleague. I was preparing for a large black-tie event, and Tom showed me the shortcut to access the West Foyer by taking the stairs just out of the catering sales office…how nifty was that?! But that is the tip of the iceberg…I worked with a so many consummate professionals who added to my arsenal of hospitality knowledge. Each person from the housemen, the bartenders, Planetary, Floralia, the esteemed Captain Elio who I requested in writing to work my events, and the entire catering sales team lead by the fabulous and most witty, Jim Blauvelt.
We all worked very hard, and we laughed A LOT along the way. The Grand Ballroom, the gorgeous Silver Corridor, Basildon, Jade, Astor; a slate of hotel grandeur, but when it came down to it, it was all about the people, the wonderful WA Hospitality Family. What a run we had…This picture was taken in March 2017 just before the hotel closing. I am standing here with my dear, dear colleague and friend, Tracey Brown, DOC and one of the wonderful doormen. I miss you all.