How did you get into the hospitality business?
“In my career, to know new things I need to travel, to get the right taste I need to try the dish, to know a good spa service I need to choose a treatment “
Back to 2002 when I was at my first year in university in Phnom Penh, I joined my first hospitality career as a junior staff at travel agency, Asian Trails Ltd. I had zero experiences of how it works, but I had a chance to be a part of company and a chance to learn something new. To be able to promote international guests coming to Cambodia, I need to have more knowledge about my country; culture, climate, tourist areas from local to international choices, geographic, distance & a travel condition, price rang etc…through these experiences I also enjoyed myself exploring new things & new destination. My first proposal to my clients they confirmed, I was so happy, I feel I had a power to convince people by get to know more & know better of what I am doing and understand what my clients needed. Since then I had several team under my supervision this was a satisfied experience. I kept hunting and start to like hospitality career.
2011, I had an opportunity to improve myself at resort business, I joined at Song Saa Private Island as a first luxury island resort in Cambodia as Sales Manager. Working with 15 different nationalities team works. Luxury property in Cambodia is something new and challenge to promote within local and international. I really put all my energy to proof that in Cambodia can really have luxury property & warm services to welcome guest. It was a pleasant journey and a great experience to earn.
2017 until present, since I carry island experience as sales, another opportunity await for me at The Royal Sands Koh Rong Resort, first 5 stars resort in Koh Rong, as Director of Sales. The Royal Sands is an investment of Swiss & Cambodian (Royal Group). I join Royal Sands since resort is born, resort has been well presented to local and international tradeshow. We went through these years together including pandemic time and we are going to reopening stronger and better with support from everyone within the company and our local and international partners. I really love the island spirit, it’s pure, fresh nature, crystal sand and turquoise sea water.
By naturally in blood, the hospitality is our passion and leisure, we also had our own wine bar business, Bouchon Wine Bar, which is more taking by my husband, Cedric & the Manager. It was joyful to see our friends and our customer enjoy a great place, great wine, delicious French food. This is all we need within hospitality, be our guests & enjoy!
What studies did you follow to become a hospitality professional?
I studied a bachelor degree of accounting, and continue a master degree in business administration at National University of Management in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. I started my bachelor degree at young age, my family choose the subject for me because they thought it’s a right career for girl, being an accountant at office, no need to travel a lot outside. In my 3rd year I realized, accounting is not a subject I like but I can’t change. My next degree, I chose master degree in business administration to get to know extra knowledge in generally. But in my position I need to know well the digit to plan thing.
“What you studied is not really define what you want to be ! Cambodia is a developing country; passion can be changed by the other opportunity and the development around yourself… Take a chance and do it your best!”
What do you like about your job? And what do you like less?
What I like about my job is seeing the clients are happy, team are happy & the company is in a good move, we all achieving and working in same goal. Sometime could be annoying because when you are working in hospitality you won’t rest during weekend and public holidays.
What is your best experience, story in this profession?
“My best experience story is finding peace within problem”
2017, when Royal Sands was just reopening, I met an elegant, sensitive guest at resort, he has right to be upset because we couldn’t fix a villa on time for his family. I was there with engineering team sit down on the floor and help team to screw the un-finishing stuffs. He saw me right there support team and did our best we could. Upon his check out, he gave me his credit card, he said” Please check my invoice, I trusted you, this is a code.” I was very emotional and I didn’t expect such a thing from him. When someone you don’t know said “I trusted you!!” this is so touch. Good Job & Good heart always pay back.
23 April 2017, Prime Minister Samdech Hun Sen presided over the grand opening ceremony of the Royal Sands Koh Rong Resort, It such a honor that I worked closely with special team of PM, military, police force, marine, air force, medias, it’s a hug task and we achieved all together and this experiences I have no hesitate to say “yes we did it & no hesitate to do it again”.
In 2019, we created a dream wedding of a couple from UK with their 50 guests from different countries, take placed at The Royal Sands Koh Rong Resort, the couple were tearing by our details attention to what they needed. Nothing more than happy to see this crying happiness. Yes we did it again!
Every day is a new day and new thing to learn. Like what you do, love what you got, but to have this peace everyone needs to know well yourself. Within hospitality business if you feel stressful yourself you can’t provide the best services to customers. Communication among team work is very importance.
Cambodia is a country of smiling, this is a great chance to proof a successful in hospitality industry.