Romain's story was updated in November, 2014

A Vatel 2013 alumnus, Romain Rapoport didn’t need a lot of time for a successful career in the most beautiful hotels in Paris. He had just finished his final internship at the Hotel Renaissance Arc de Triomphe*****, when he was hired as the Special Events Coordinator at the Renaissance Paris Le Parc Trocadero***** Hotel. A year and a half later, he was promoted as the Sales Executive in another five-star hotel in Paris: the Marriott Champs Elysees. Romain will tell us about these dizzying promotions.

Romain, before telling us what you now do, could you tell us how you transformed your final internship into your first job?

My six month internship at the Renaissance Paris Arc de Triomphe was a very rewarding experience from all points of view. Working in an international group like Marriott, for me was not only a guarantee of quality but I was also sure that I would be working with a company that shared my values and those that I learned when I was attending Vatel. My job consisted in organizing events in the hotel: press conferences, workshops, birthday celebrations, after-work parties, and so on. My clients were very demanding ones, in the spotlight, and I had to propose events that were both urban and exotic. When I heard that Le Parc Trocadero was looking for a Special Events Coordinator, I jumped on the occasion and I was hired.


Can you tell us more about the job of Special Events Coordinator in a luxury hotel?

An Events Coordinator makes sure that there is seamless delivery of every event in the hotel, both for companies and for individuals. It’s his or her job to make sure that he’s got all the information required to do this. So then he can give recommendations to all the other departments that will be working before, during and after the event. And when you do this in a luxury hotel, that means that you have to have five-star service and never miss out on a note.

I personally organized residential seminars, workshops, business lunches and dinners, corporate cocktails, engagement or wedding parties, and baptisms. The most important thing for me each time was to make each event as personal as possible, while carefully following all of my customers’ specifications. Because of this, each event was unique, and that’s what my customers all wanted.

Like I said earlier, Vatel and Marriott share the same values and that’s why they encouraged me to go even farther in my personalization attempts for events, and they allowed me to roll out a program in the hotel called “Meeting Imagined,” that the Marriott head office uses, and that you can check out here on YouTube: 



In your opinion, what qualities should you hone if you want to do this kind of job?

Of course, you need to like working in sales.

  • You have to be well organized, thorough and methodical. That’s really important when you’re taking care of twenty projects at the same time.
  • You have to be proactive, and be able to defend the initiatives you’ve taken.
  • You’ve got to be a really good leader in order to communicate and be understood by all the different team members.
  • You have to be curious and always be open-minded, to be able to sniff out the next trend.
  • And you always have to be available.


How were you hired for your new job as a Sales Executive and what do you do?

Working in Special Events Management allowed me to become aware of everything that could take place in a hotel and the different services offered. So after a few months, I felt like I could work in sales. Once again, there was a job vacancy that I applied for, and I was hired because of my results and assessments. My work consists in developing the hotel’s turnover by proposing different services both to new customers - and here I’m mostly targeting the corporate market,  - and customers that we’ve already worked with before.  To achieve this, you have to have an excellent relationship with your customers in order to consistently exceed their expectations. Of course, this is to turn them into repeat customers.


How did the courses you took at Vatel prepare you for these two jobs?

The quality of the courses and teachers in Vatel allowed me to start working with quite a bit of experience and knowledge of the hotel management field. All of our professors come from this sector and still work in it. They teach us how to make decisions and be accountable for them, how to constantly excel, how to work with strategic rules in hotel management and that you always have to know what’s going on in every department. This is Vatel’s renowned “knowledge:” academic knowledge, know-how, knowing how to work with people, knowing how to convey this knowledge, and knowing how to manage!


What skills that you learned at Vatel and in your internships allowed you to succeed, in your opinion?

  • Knowledge of the French hotel market, knowing how to live with others, legal rules and regulations, management, accounting, taxation, etc.
  • Concrete application of all of these basics in our professional application courses and internships.
  • Development of indispensable human qualities in our line of work: dogged perseverance, passion, wanting to learn and succeed, altruism, and commitment to customer satisfaction.


What advice would you give to students who would like to attend Vatel and work in the Hospitality and Tourism Management fields?

Be passionate, always want to learn more, and be demanding with yourself; this will facilitate your daily work and you’ll be all the happier because of it.


What are your upcoming projects?

I’d like to become an expert in my field of work and why not, in the long term, export my knowledge and skills abroad.

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