Sydney Montellaro graduated with a BS in Hotel and Tourism Management in 2016, and currently works as a Sales Manager at the Loews Hollywood hotel. In this post, she tells us about her role, and about what it takes to succeed in the hospitality industry.
October 14, 2019
Alumni Spotlight: Sydney Montellaro
How did your career journey lead you to working at your current role at Loews Hollywood Hotel?
I had a close relationship with Loews Hotels as a student of the Tisch Center during my senior year, and I was recruited for the Loews Management training program in Orlando, Florida where we worked in various departments from housekeeping to food and beverage to front desk. I wanted to stay with Loews, but there were no sales positions open at the time, so I moved back to New York and took a position at the Peninsula Hotel as a Sales Coordinator for just over a year. Loews then reached out to me and told me there was an open position in sales in Hollywood.
Can you share more about your role at Loews?
The Loews Hollywood is one of the anchor properties and it is in the center of the city. I work in the sales department and our main goal is to sell the conference spaces in the hotel. There are over 75,000 square feet of meeting space, 2 ballrooms and 628 guest rooms. Conference spaces can hold anywhere from 25 people to 2,000 people. My official role is titled Business Development Sales Manager. Whereas the rest of the sales team has a specific market they try to cater to, my role is unique in that I try to create new business across a wide spectrum. For example, recently, I have been trying to look for more millennial-focused companies such as makeup or skincare.
What experience and skills do you think are necessary to be able to succeed in the hospitality industry?
You definitely have to have the hospitality gene and have the ability to connect with people. If you are a people person, all the other skills will come to you but that is definitely the most important one.
Can you share advice for undergraduate students looking to get into the industry?
Talk to as many people as possible. Going to school in NYC and at NYU offers you an amazing experience with so many opportunities, so utilize them. Make sure you get out there and make your name known and as long as you have a few internships and connections under your belt, you will be on the path to success.
How has your NYU experience shaped and impacted your career?
In general, the people I got to meet and network with in my 4 years offered me a great stepping stone for my full-time role. What I learned in my undergraduate classes has really translated well in my career and in my everyday life.