The Royalton Resort and Spa has responded to charges that the hotel has been ‘poaching’ staff from other hotels.
Speaking this evening as the Royalton held a soft opening, General Manager Andre Dhanpaul, told reporters he was not sure why such an accusation would be made, recalling that several months ago the resort advertised for staff and received 6,000 applications.
Dhanpaul said the applicants were shortlisted and some 2,500 were interviewed.
“You can’t stop people from moving from company to company – so poaching would be us calling and trying to bring people over. People applied of their own free will, as I did as well,” the Royalton official stated.
Dhanpaul explained that the resort was happy for today’s soft opening, noting that it took close to eighteen months to build the hotel and train staff.
He disclosed that there is no construction happening as of today, only finishing touches that are happening behind the scenes.
According to Dhanpaul, more than fifty percent of the resort’s inventory is ready.
“People are loving us,” he said of the response by guests.
Dhanpaul declared that the Royalton will deliver the best service that the Caribbean has to offer in terms of an all inclusive holiday.
The resort has 456 suites and 950 hosts.
Dhanpaul said he was happy to reveal that 98 percent of hotel staff are Saint Lucians.
He said the resort’s ultimate objective is to treat its people well and surpass the expectations of its guests.
“We want to do community outreach by having our managers go to high schools and colleges one hour per month each of us will go out to inspire Saint Lucians to join our business,” Dhanpaul stated.
He also disclosed plans to reach out to Sir Arthur Lewis Community College.
“We are very pleased. At the beginning of a hotel opening generally you start out slowly – maybe 25, 30 percent and you slowly ramp it up so this week I’m 25, next week I’m 35 percent, April we go up to about 50 and in May we are already at about 80 percent which more than likely will grow to about 85, 90 percent.”