Business

Maintenance master Alabi setting high standards at new GPH

By MARAIA VULA The sparkling new Grand Pacific Hotel’s maintenance manager, Ekundayo Alabi is ready for what lies ahead as the Suva hotel reopens in the coming quarter. So he
24 Feb 2014 11:08

By MARAIA VULA

The sparkling new Grand Pacific Hotel’s maintenance manager, Ekundayo Alabi is ready for what lies ahead as the Suva hotel reopens in the coming quarter.
So he should be. Mr Alabi is a maintenance manager with a master’s degree, has taught at university and worked in top tourism and business hotel operations.
The man from Nigeria with extensive experience in engineering, maintenance and in the tourism industry will ensure that the maintenance works at the hotel are done to precision.
He heads a team of 22 staff who have different responsibilities ranging from life guarding and carpentry to graphic design.
Mr Alabi said: “My role at GPH is to make sure the maintenance department is ready for operation come the pre-opening, soft and the grand opening.
“I have three life guards for the swimming pool, three pool attendants, five gardeners, one chief gardener and an assistant maintenance manager.”
His staff also include an electrician, two air condition and refrigeration technicians, two information technology technicians, one graphic designer, one plumber and a carpenter.
About Mr Alabi
Mr Alabi has a background in mechanical engineering after completing his Master’s Degree, he lectured after which he ventured into professional practices.
He started as a graduate assistant then later assistant lecturer.
“I later rose to the position of lecturer 2 in the department of mechanical engineering at the Nigerian Military University also known as Nigerian Defence Academy.
“Later I resigned and took up a post as the plant / maintenance manager with TAF construction Limited in Gambia.
“Before I came to Fiji I was the chief engineer / maintenance manager with the Atlantic Hotel owned by the LAICO group present in 15 countries for more than 7 years.”

Training
And just like other departments in the hotel, Mr Alabi’s will also be training staff to gear up for the grand opening and operations thereinafter.
He highlighted that no matter how good one is on the job, it was important to touch up or brush up on a few skills as there will be no doubt high expectations.
“Staff training begins on March 3 where we will need to train them to know how to handle guests,” he said.
“So we need to prepare and train our staff so that they are ready for this role. This is very important for us as GPH is a prestigious hotel and the expectation from guests is going to be very high.”
The training will conducted especially for those who do not have prior experience in the hotel industry.

Grand Pacific Hotel maintenance manager, Ekundayo Ali. Photo: JUSTINE MANNAN




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