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Be eager to learn @ five star hotel Ritz Carlton Barcelona

The Ritz Carlton Hotel Arts is one of the biggest and most exclusive hotels in Barcelona. It has one big advantage: it is situated right at the beach. It is a popular spot for Tio students to go on their internship. This summer, 13 students are learning the ins and outs of hotel management. “Tio students are always eager to learn more”, Human Resources Coordinator Iris Curto says. “Their profile fits the Ritz Carlton brand, so that’s why there are so many Tio students here.”

Internships all year round

The five-star hotel is often fully booked. A major attraction for tourists and Barcelona residents alike, is the Michelin star restaurant Enoteca. “During the summer, the main nationality that is staying with us are Americans”, tells Iris Curto. “And the other European countries of course. In the low season months we cater business groups, we had some big brands with us like: NIKE, Porsche, Audi and big consultant companies. The big brands come here for conferences and presentations of new products. We have a very good revenue and sales team, who understand when to sell to groups and when to focus on individuals.”

There are interns working at the hotel the whole year round, but most work during the summer months. “There are more departments opened during the high season”, Curto explains. “In total I think we reach 600 persons in staff. And about 80 interns. They work at all departments; rooms division, food and beverage, administrative work, revenue and sales, marketing, finance, events. A little bit of everything.”

Application process

The application process is an important aspect for the Ritz Carlton and their employees. “As Human Resources Coordinator it is my job to find the right profile for Ritz Carlton”, says Curto. “He or she has to believe in our standards and way of thinking. Everything else we can teach them, how to serve the best wine, how to check in and out, how to work at a Michelin star restaurant. But the genuine care, is something that you are born with.” 

The aspiring interns speak with Iris Curto first and if she sees the fit for the Ritz Carlton profile, they receive an offer letter stating that for that period of time they will do their internship in the division that they choose. “When the interns arrive for the Welcome Day, they have an interview with the director of their division. That will determine what position within the division will be the most perfect for them according to their personality and preferences. For example: when you choose F&B and you are looking for a more refined service, the Michelin star restaurant will be something for you. Are you a very outgoing person who likes to have fun with our guests? Then the outside bar at the pool would be a perfect fit.”

A lot of Tio students

The luxury hotel is popular amongst Tio students. This summer 13 students are here for their internship. “We have a lot of students from Tio”, says Curto. “Everything is going really well. We like working with Tio students, because they never say no to anything. They are always able and eager to learn more. They understand they have to learn every aspect of hotel management before they can grow and become a General Manager later on.” 

For other companies most interns come and go, but the goal of working with trainees for us is to spot talent and to educate the future employees of the company. “It happened to me too”, Curto tells us. “I graduated here. We put our best interns in the ‘bank of talent'. They are the first people I contact when I have a position to be fulfilled. It’s always a tough competition for people who like to work with us, so interns certainly have an advantage. But: always be truthful to yourself. The hospitality business is huge, with lots of opportunities besides working at a five star hotel. Be open to every possibility.”