Elliot McKenzie graduated from the Celtic Manor Trainee Management Scheme in 2016 and is now Assistant Reception Manager at the resort.
The scheme allows you to work in departments around the resort – so anything from working as a chef, to working as a greenkeeper, to working in the sales team. Towards the end of the scheme, you then get to specialise in the area you want to. It’s a great way to see how different teams work. In particular, my knowledge of the sales system is invaluable to my role on reception now and that knowledge undoubtedly helped me in securing my current role.
The good thing about Celtic Manor is that they don’t shy away from letting you get involved in the big and challenging events, so I’ve also worked on lots of celebrity dinners, the Celebrity Cup golf tournament and polo events. They throw you in at the deep end which gives you amazing experience for your career and is so rewarding.
One of the highlights of my time here has to be the NATO summit where I worked as part of the fine dining team. I served Barack Obama and David Cameron afternoon tea! At the time I just got on with it, but it’s incredible looking back!
I love meeting new people every day and giving them an unforgettable experience, and helping them make memories. There’s also a great team atmosphere, which just makes working here really enjoyable. There can be long days, but if you put your heart and soul into working then you’ll reap the rewards.
Please note: Students on the BA (Hons) Hotel and Hospitality Management course will benefit from similar practical experience across all areas of the resort as the current trainee managers enjoy.