It’s a steamy morning at Mayakoba resort at the Riviera Maya of Mexico, and Suzanne Cohen, VP of Luxury Brands for the Americas at Marriott International, has simply completed a presentation on brand approach at the ILTM Americas conference — an annual collecting of luxurious tour advisors and industry experts. It’s a glamorous placing, for positive, but Cohen has only flown in for a series of meetings. Right before this, she becomes in Los Cabos doing a domain inspection on the soon-to-open Solaz, a Luxury Collection Resort. Later that day, she’ll be off again to test out Marriott houses in different parts of the vicinity.
It’s just a slice of lifestyles for a lady whose position at the area’s largest in the organization includes influencing the guest experience in specific approaches. In her function, Cohen works on advertising for seven luxury brands and spearheads corporate projects, worldwide partnerships and software improvement like “What She Said,” an event series that she created for W Hotels. “What She Said” is a month-to-month networking possibility that brings collectively dynamic women like fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg for discussions approximately career, tour and more. Besides all that, Cohen is a mom who cares deeply approximately helping other girls get ahead in the male-ruled hospitality enterprise.
Here, we communicate to Cohen approximately what it is like to be a female exec inside the resort space, get her to percentage some of her favorite advice from inspiring women who’ve spoken at W Hotels events and find out if it’s simply OK to take the shampoo from the room.
Laura Begley Bloom: Tell me approximately your career trajectory.
Suzanne Cohen: I’ve labored for Marriott and Starwood for 14 years. I began out doing a lot of operations and advertising at Starwood, that specializes in luxury manufacturers. Prior to that, I labored in advertising and the non-profit area. I changed into very prompted through my projects and started out to travel greater as my kids were given older. My husband pivoted to a position that worried less tour so that I ought to preserve to journey and grow my profession. I love what I do. I travel every week, meet a lot of humans and affect our visitor stories.
Begley Bloom: Tell me what programs you implemented at W Hotels to achieve your goals.
Cohen: Many success girls stay at W Hotels. They like the layout aesthetic of the hotels and the exception of our services and amenities. These ladies are developing their careers and becoming increasingly a hit. They made a choice to live at a W. We wanted to provide lower back to our visitors in addition to the network, so we evolved programming with a heartbeat in the back of it that includes their hobbies in style, music, technology and way of life. That becomes the idea in the back of our “What She Said” speaker collection. It’s an intimate moderated forum for learning, notion, and interchange of thoughts. It provides girls with a chance to the community and listens influential ladies talk about their trips.
Most of our visitors are constant tourists seeking to proportion stories and examine from each different. They are seeking out useful tips along with: what are your tour must-haves, how do you stability work and family lifestyles and the way do you maintain it all together. The audience participates, and we report all of it to podcasts, so our community can enjoy them.
Begley Bloom: Tell me about the “Power Trip” collection which you created in partnership with Marie Claire and Jet Blue.
Cohen: We identified a want to create a brand new space for leading influential girls from unique fields to engage and community. In partnership with Marie Claire, we chartered a Jet Blue plane with an all-woman crew to fly a hundred prominent leaders and influencers to San Francisco for a 36-hour networking extravaganza with one hundred West Coast-based ladies. They were able to begin networking at the plane. In San Francisco, they stayed at the W Hotel, where we hosted a sequence of shows and panel discussions. We love these invitation-most effective events. The essential part of it is the networking. Women like to proportion, alternate memories and advantage insights from different like-minded women on the way to efficaciously control their careers and circle of relatives existence.
Begley Bloom: Are your inns designed to encourage interaction amongst guests?
Cohen: Yes. Travelers are certainly curious those who love to meet humans. Travel provides opportunities to meet human beings you don’t recognize. Our accommodations provide social areas to foster their conversations. Our lobbies are designed to be at ease sitting and running areas. Hotel bars are meeting places in which you can let defend down a touch. Women vacationers like to be close to other human beings.
Begley Bloom: Have you seen a boom in women touring? How do their desires fluctuate?
Cohen: Research tells us that there are more women millionaires on the horizon than guys. While it’s crucial for lodges to create attractive reports for each sex, ladies travelers have specific wishes. Details are critical. Women tend to love experiences which are particular and cultural. People also are working in another way. Many humans paintings from the bed, now not desks, so consolation is a massive component. Women want extra care and offerings to make they enjoy smoother. We deal with the one’s desires by way of designing rooms with cloth cabinet closets, higher lights and butler offerings. Our guests want high-end amenity products. Quality hair care merchandise is especially vital. They need to enchantment to each sex.
Begley Bloom: Talk to me about being a role version for your kids.
Cohen: Working moms who tour continually have guilt. I display them that I can paintings tough however nonetheless be actively concerned. Work is critical. It’s suitable for them to peer me following my expert dreams and doing something I am captivated with.
Begley Bloom: What about other girls within the workplace?
Cohen: Women with infants usually ask me how I do all of it. I remain related to younger managers and help them and help them navigate being a very good mom and having a career. It is inspiring for them to look girls in government roles. I inspire them not to surrender their goals. I’m a working mom who leads essential initiatives, however, I am nonetheless an individual who chats about own family life. I remind them that it gets simpler as they and their kids grow old. And with increasing government stage opportunities for girls at Marriott, they can continue advancing their careers. I do my first-rate to be supportive, obvious and human.
Begley Bloom: What is your biggest piece of professional recommendation?
Cohen: You must love what you do. You may be away from home loads. You may be making a buddy, the circle of relatives and social sacrifices. Always be passionate or you’ll resent it. Have fun. There may be difficult days, however, it must continually feel exciting. To get in advance, be a good person and deal with all people in any respect tiers with respect.