Hua Hin Today often meets many interesting business people in the community. Not only big business but also smaller unheralded entrepreneurs of our commercial world. They are often people with a tale to tell who we hope you will get to know better through this regular addition to Hua Hin Today!
In this first edition we would like to introduce Mr Alexander S Parry, General Manager of Novotel Hua Hin, Cha – Am Beach Resort and Spa.
Alexander Parry is the General Manager of the Novotel Hua Hin, a long way away from his first experiences in the hospitality industry. He told Hua Hin today about how, as a young (and probably naïve) 24 year old Swedish traveller he ventured into the Beverly Wilshire Hotel on Sunset Boulevard, Beverley Hills USA. This famous hotel has long been a favourite of Hollywood celebrities and was one of the filming locations for the 1990 movie ‘Pretty Woman’.
Alexander was able to secure his first of many positions working in hotels in this most prestigious establishment and has continued to advance his career in hospitality ever since. He has a host of stories to tell about the many encounters he had with movie stars, singers and even a past US President Ronald Reagan! He says he could easily write a book about these experiences although I couldn’t coax any stories from him that were too spicy or controversial! After all discretion is one of the qualities you would expect of an experienced Hotel Manager.
On the way to Hua Hin Alexander has also held positions in other parts of the US including New York and Los Vegas. After becoming a Hotel Manager in Bangkok and living in Thailand for about four years, Alexander was appointed to his position as General Manager on 1st April last year. This coincided with the ‘rebranding’ of the Hotel, previously a Marriott Hotel under the umbrella of the Accor Group and as a Novotel Resort.
The challenges of this appointment included maintaining the loyalty of staff affected by the changes. He talked about how the Hotel’s staff are often Thai people from the local community and how he understands that the hotel’s support of the community is very important. In fact Alexander encourages his staff to promote local restaurants and other businesses rather than to always focus on the hotel’s own extensive dining facilities. He has a favourite locally on a small Soi just outside the hotel called ‘Harry’s Pizzeria’. Pizza is a weakness of Alexander’s and he recommends ‘Harrys’ as a great local dining experience.
Alexander has a Thai wife and three months ago their baby daughter arrived. The family now live about 5 minutes away from the Hotel. Although always ‘on call’, home is now sometimes a valuable haven for him and his family. Alexander has a tennis court at home for exercise and relaxation although he tells me he is also flirting a little with golf as a future leisure activity. He enjoys the Thai lifestyle and promoting a ‘family friendly’ resort experience, often for Thai people from Bangkok. As a family man himself Alexander now understands more about the family holiday experience and is eager to offer facilities for all the family to enjoy. These days just focusing on celebrities has become less important in fact perhaps a little passé.
All in all this was a very pleasant encounter with a friendly, gracious and experienced host. Alexander Parry seems bound to become a valuable and contributing Member of the local community for some years to come. He may not be too fussed about mingling with the rich and famous any more but he is eager to offer you his personal welcome.