CONTRIBUTOR: Emma Castle & Georgianne Fsadni
GETTING TO KNOW GEORGI FSADNI
Who is Georgianne Fsadni? And how did she become a world class hotel expert? Read on to find out.
Where did you grow up?
I am a native New Yorker born in NYC (Astoria) to immigrant parents from Malta. I went to a prominent public high school in Manhattan called Stuyvesant – those were my most formative years. I was riding the gritty and sometimes unsavoury subways to and from school on my own from the young age of 13
What’s your favourite thing about your work?
I have worked in the hospitality industry in various capacities and each position has had its own highlights. Really my favourite thing is my passion for the industry. From a more ethereal perspective, I love how hotels can help to transport people to another culture and immerse them in that culture. From a practical level, I believe that the hotel industry is an important source of employment throughout the economic and demographic spectrum all over the world. From a progressive perspective, I believe the hospitality industry is at the cutting edge in relation to innovation and sustainability.
How did you find the B Hive?
I invited Tammy to a dinner I was hosting at HotelsWorld with other industry professionals in Sydney. At that time she was the COO of TFE Hotels. We hit it off and stayed in touch. She is a talented and driven professional and I admire her work ethics, creativity, and smarts.
What else do you have going on outside of work?
I enjoy traveling and have been to more than 70 countries. I am passionate about food and will get excited over something as delicious as really good mango sticky rice from a street cart in Bangkok to a yummy lobster in the Hamptons. Along with that, pretty much all high quality beverages at the right time, in the right place, with the right people makes me very happy.
Thankfully, to balance that, I am very active – I golf, play lacrosse (just learned this year), and play tennis – all badly but keeps me moving. I am an avid walker/hiker and a beach lover. I believe in the restorative powers of forest walks and the ocean.
What did you want to be when you grew up?
I went back and forth between wanting to be a teacher (like my mother who taught in Malta), to wanting to be a police officer (really wanted to protect the underdog). In high school, I switched to wanting to be an architect.
What was your first job?
My first real job was from 14 years old working for a bakery off the books making $2.50 an hour which I held until I was of legal age (16) and then I went to work for law firm for a few hours after school every day. I opened up shop at 5 and 6am in the mornings on Saturday and Sunday, stocking the huge window display from top to bottom with the fresh hot Italian loaves of all sizes and shapes made by the non-English speaking Italian bakers in the night. On Saturday mornings all the postmen from down the block would come in to get coffee. I enjoyed knowing exactly what they wanted and going as fast as possible to get through the early morning craze.
What attracted you to this kind of work?
I travelled to Malta (where both my parents were born and raised) a few times at a young age so I knew I loved Europe and travel from the get go; I have such fond memories of those times. But I really fell into the business because a friend of mine was concerned about my lack of focus (this is the tame way of putting it) my freshman year at Cornell University so one day she dragged me to all her classes at Cornell’s Hotel School and I was sold – fell in love with the industry immediately. I applied to transfer in and, thankfully, made it.
If money were no object and you could have a year’s sabbatical, what would you do?
Too many countries and cultures and not enough time! I guess I would go explore a few more places (like Antarctica, Peru and South Africa) in the first six months, and the next six, I’d see if I could spend it working the land on a vineyard in France and pretending to speak French.
Where are your favourite travel destinations and why?
I think my top three would be Bhutan (for its spirituality and simplicity), the Galapagos (for its wildlife and history of evolution) and I feel a connection with parts of Hawaii and New Zealand for their sheer beauty. More mainstream is France which I have been to countless times and will always be a part of my life.
What is the one thing you wish all your clients did?
Become a repeat client! I have been on both sides and the best way to ensure a successful relationship is to set clear expectations from the start that are mutually agreed upon. This requires both parties being forthcoming with respect to providing information, requirements, and capabilities.
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