Humans of Hospitality

Potrait of Vladimir Domin


Hello, my name is Vladimir Domin and I am from Slovakia. I currently live and work in Thailand as the Food & Beverage Director at Movenpick Hotel Siam Na Jomtien Pattaya.
I graduated from the Hotel Academy of Ludovit Winter in Piestany, Slovakia in 2005 and
have been working in the hospitality industry ever since. This has allowed me to travel and work in various countries such as England, Malta, India, Vietnam, Thailand, and Azerbaijan.

Portrait of Thomas Goval at Bürgenstock Hotels & Resort for HoH


Hello, my name is Thomas Goval, I am the Acting General Manager at Bürgenstock Hotels & Resort.

Bürgenstock Hotels & Resort in a nutshell … it’s more than a hotel. It’s a destination. Officially composed of four hotel buildings, 10 restaurants and bars, two spas, three tennis courts, one golf course, about 30 conference rooms, the highest outdoor lift in Europe, and a funicular that allows you to reach the hotels. It’s 60 hectares of land between Lake Lucerne and the Alps, 383 rooms plus 67 residences and villas, and about 700 team members. The Bürgenstock Resort is very unique. That’s how I would describe it.

Portrait of Robin Hagedoorn from Bunk Hotels posing for HoH


Hi, I am Robin Hagedoorn, the founder and owner of Bunk.

Currently, I’m working on a new project in Rotterdam, where we are in the process of converting a new church into a Bunk hotel. I am also involved in two projects in Curacao and some other consultancy “schemes,” helping other real estate developers. I love giving new purpose to old, monumental buildings. It runs in the family.

Portrait of Patricia Plesner from Ecohotels posing for HoH


Hi, my name is Patricia Plesner. I am the CEO of

I’ve always been fascinated by how tech and the environment can go hand in hand. I have an aunt and uncle who work in the hotel industry. They run a small hotel chain of eco-certified boutique hotels, Guldsmeden Hotels, primarily based in Copenhagen. I’ve heard all these stories, about guest experiences and how to sell the rooms, but it wasn’t until 2020 I really got into the industry. That was when we started


My name is Lluís Serra and I am currently Managing Director and CEO at EUHT StPOL – Sant Pol School of Hospitality and Culinary Management in Barcelona and President of EUHOFA International. I started my formal career in hospitality in the US. In fact, I was raised in a touristic area by the beach in the Barcelona region, and since I was a teenager, I did summer jobs in nearby hotels, gathering experience in operations. When I turned 17, I was admitted to Cornel University’s School of Hotel Administration in New York, at the time, the best university in hospitality in the world, while hotel schools in Europe did not offer bachelor accreditation yet. In the US I had the chance to work in two beautiful boutique hotels. It was in the 90s and by then, the following


Hello everybody, I am Claudie Ravel. I founded the commercial company Guayapi 33 years ago when I was pregnant and this is my SMACK story.

Originally I am a jurist, and I worked as such for 12 years before building the Guayapi company in Paris. I was working in the management of a well know garments company, and I was in charge of the global license as well as the communication fields of the company. I decided to open my own business after I became pregnant. I wanted to focus on my own culture and education as that was significant to me. My mother educated me about the products in homeopathy and plants in our own garden, and my father taught us about diversity of native cultures all over the world. That’s how Guayapi Paris was founded in 1990.


“My name is Lars Heesbeen and I’m originally from the Netherlands. I’m currently working as the Multi-Property Director of Sales at the Abu Dhabi edition, the Marriott Hotel Downtown Abu Dhabi, and the Marriott Executive Apartments Abu Dhabi, and this is my SMACK story.

I have a bit of an interesting background: My dad was in the military, and we would move to different countries very often, but I enjoyed that. I was born in Germany, lived in the Netherlands, and we moved to the United States, back to Europe, and to Abu Dhabi. When I was growing up, I also wanted to go into the military but seeing my dad tour different warzones and handle post-traumatic stress disorder, that’s not something I wanted for myself.


“Hello everybody. My name is David Frei, I am the General Manager of the and this is my humans of hospitality story!

My dream was actually to become a pilot as I wanted to fly around the world and discover new places and cultures. I had already started my application when the Swissair grounding happened. So my dream grounded as well and after serving my obligatory service in the Swiss army for almost two years I was thinking of following my father’s footsteps in becoming a lawyer. I started studying law and economics in St. Gallen, butI learnt pretty fast that this is not for me at all.


“My name is Anna Haumer, I am the Employer Branding Specialist at Zoku and this is my story!

Hospitality always has something to do with purpose because you get so much of it by interacting with people, passion, as well as a little bit of frustration to be honest because the industry is not adapting fast enough to the new generation and time. I’m super purpose driven and even though I was very successful in my life as a chef and received a Michelin star as the youngest woman ever in Austria, there was still something missing for me and that is how Zoku and I matched.

The co founders at Zoku did a lot of research, conducted interviews and asked business nomads what they were missing when living in hotels for a longer period. Zoku’s concept and purpose is based on loneliness of these people and on the frustration that also resonates with my career path. I was frustrated by people in the industry constantly complaining about the staff shortage or saying that employees are not motivated anymore. I really wanted to make a change and I didn’t have the feeling I could do that as a chef. So shortly after I received the Michelin star, I decided to leave the restaurant industry and started to study Human Resources to focus on corporate culture where I definitely found my purpose. In my last semester I joined Zoku, as it allows me to stay proactive, get my hands dirty, think differently, inspire people, employees and companies to move forward and that is what makes my job so great.


“Hi everyone,

I’m Ashley Abodeely, Executive Chef at the NoMad Hotel London and this is my story:

The first buzzwords that describe my job as a chef are exhilarating, the respect for the product, education and growing with the times.

I started my journey when I was 16 years old. I didn’t come from a chef’s or restaurant family, but I was taught to be hardworking, dedicated, caring and to treat people respectfully. I saw something in that when I was in high school and cooked in my culinary program. An opportunity presented itself and I got to go to the Culinary Institute of America, which helped me build the foundation of why people are chefs. I cook because I love everything revolving around food: eating it, feeding people, watching their reactions, the nostalgia and the excitement you get through these stories.