Hospitality Mgmt Work Practice Abroad 2008-9 Luxury on the French Riviera Galway Girl

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Hospitality Mgmt Work Practice Abroad 2008-9


Luxury on the French Riviera - Galway Girl

Land of Smiles - The Devil in Disguise

Geilo Party Animal - Yorkshire Ghosts

Exploited in Yxtaholm
Don’t make the same mistakes as these people! Make your own! But learn from Axel, Annika, Åsa, Simon, Heidi, Nina, Mai, and Lena and have the best time of your life!


Ghost’s at Scotch Corner Hotel

Some people are fascinated of them, some are just scared and some can’t talk about them at all. paulis~1.jpg

I went to practise at Scotch Corner Hotel in the North of Yorkshire for four months, and it didn’t take long before I got to hear the stories. Some people say that the hotel has guests, guests you can’t see and they sometimes make noises. Some people call them ghosts. Before Scotch Corner became a hotel it was used in World War II as a rehabilitation centre for RAF personnel recovering from serious injury. Many people nowadays believe that most of the ghosts in the hotel
come from that time.

There are many stories I got to hear and here are some of them:

In the Saddle restaurant there is sometimes an unexpected guest. He is regarded by members of staff as something of a practical joker. Most people who have seen him consider him as almost impossible to describe. He appears to be “floating “ and can be perceived as sitting at various tables almost at the same moment in time. Serving staff notice that, as they make their way to the kitchen to place an order for another table, there is another guest still waiting nearby to be served. They return to the dining room to take his order only to find that he has disappeared.

“On the occasion they felt a sudden chilling in the atmosphere”

Room 211 is a room that the housekeeping staff hate to clean. There is a story that a man hanged himself in the room. A young RAF flying officer had an extreme depression when he came to the hotel, and the stories tell that he hanged himself in one of the bedrooms. Many of the staff will vouch for the fact that on occasions they have felt a sudden chilling in the atmosphere near this room. Even on the warmest day and also whilst working alone in the corridor, staff has felt a sudden presence behind them, but turning around, there is never anybody there.

Do people believe in these stories?”

This is a story that one of my one work colleagues got to experience. The night porter Mike was on duty when this story happened, and I still remember that day when he told me, bit by bit.

I never felt more scared in my life.

There have been many odd events reported, but both a senior manager and a senior member of staff witnessed the strangest story from the hotel. It happened one winter evening during the 1990’s. There is an old flight of steps, flanked by high walls on all sides, open to the elements, which leads down to the cellar in probably, the oldest part of the hotel.

Startled to see a nurse staring at him, then the figure slowly faded away”

On this particular evening the snow lay thick on the stairs and railings. The Duty manager was asked to change a barrel of beer and as she opened the door to go down to the cellar, she was astonished to see large bare footprints leading up from the cellar, not believing her own eyes. She went to fetch a member of staff who also witnessed this odd sight. The strangest thing about this, it that the footprints did not start at the cellar door, but a blank wall, and ending a couple of steps short of the top. As the steps are quite steep. It’s normal to use the handrail, but the snow lay undisturbed as it did on the stairs, except for the bare footprints – it´s still a mystery to this day. 3530404299_2fc338bb25.jpg

Early in February 2007 a guest reported a supernatural experience. He woke up during the night with a feeling that somebody was in his room. Upon opening his eyes, he was startled to see a nurse, dressed in an old fashioned uniform apparently staring at him. The figure then slowly faded away.

I can tell that I never saw any ghosts during my time at the hotel, but always when I was walking in the hall, I felt someone was watching me from behind. But when I turned around no one was there.

Annika Hietala

The devil in disguise

One of Finland´s most successful private hotel and restaurant entrepreneurs Satu Tiivola, also known as Mrs Kauppaneuvos (a Finnish commercial counselor), may at first sight seem arrogant, strict and rude. Mrs Tiivola (85) holds not only her two children, but also her entire staff of Hotel Haiko manor in a very short leash. Is this woman the devil in disguise?

For six months I was a hotel trainee in the beautiful hotel Haiko manor, located just outside Borgå town in southern Finland. During my traineeship in Haiko manor I soon realized that no matter how good a trainee I was, I would always be haunted by a shadow. I was not the only one who was haunted; the entire staff had issues with this person. There are several stories to tell about how Mrs Tiivola has treated her staff badly. When she arrives to Haiko manor one member of the staff always has to open the door to her taxi, take her coat off and greet her with a smile. One time a staff member was told by Mrs Tiivola that she had a dreadful haircut and looked nasty.

When you have started such a successful business as Haiko manor is in Finland, you are not only rich and famous but you also become a certain kind of role model. Satu Tiivola and her late husband Leo Vuoristo founded Haiko manor in 1964 they soon realized that Haiko manor was a gold mine, and they started to develop the estate to a high standard conference and Spa hotel, with a classy restaurant.

Mrs Tiivola has been married twice, both times with rich husbands. Some might say that Mrs Tiivola has a desire for money. With her first husband she has two children, Veikko Vuoristo and Katriina Wuoristo. Veikko is nowadays the director of the hotel. When I met Mr Vuoristo the first time he did not seem like “the big director” kind of person, he was, all the things his mother was not. He was kind, friendly and genuine. My first encounter with his sister was not so successful. I was quite new in Haiko manor, and one of my main job assignments was to connect telephone calls. I connected a call, by mistake to the wrong hotel room, when this person, who was connected to the wrong room, called back she said her name was Katriina Wuoristo. I thought that this was going to be the end my career and I got a huge telling off by both Veikko Vuoristo and the hotel manager. I met Mrs Wuoristo later; this society lady was quite a diva, used to commanding people like dogs, just like her mother.

Is the horrible lady of the beautful manor Haiko a devil in disguise or is she just another lady who has to pretend to be arrogant to gain respect? She has accomplished a great deal over the years, she has married wealthy and has a good relationship to her children. Are we just jealous of the queen and her “Paris Hilton” wannabe daughter?

The beautiful Haiko manor

Facts about Satu Tiivola

Born: 1924

Children: Veikko Vuoristo and Katriina Wuoristo.

In the early 1970s she and her husband Leo Tiivola had one of the largest private hotel and restaurant companies in the Nordic countries.

Opened hotel Haiko manor in 1964

Nowadays she is retired, but is still the chairman of the board of directors of Haiko manor.

In Helsinki and has a suite in the manor

You did not know about
Mrs Tiivola:
She started her career as an errand-girl

Mother and daughter

..this society lady was quite a diva which was used to commanding people like dogs, just like her mother.”



Explore the 5 kilometer long beach, parties and life of luxury in the Southern French city of Nice. I did all this during my five months of workpractice in the summer/ autumn of 2008.

Me and a view over Nice
I did my workpractice in Nice at the hotel Radisson SAS, there I worked in the housekeeping department. I took the flight from Arlanda airport in June and arrived at Nice airport 4 hours later. I remember my first weeks down there as it happened yesterday. It was so hot outside – impossible to do something else than sit in the shade. A couple of weeks later I started to appreciate the sunshine. I got to know a lot of new people through work and they showed me around. The best thing with Nice and its surroundings is that there’s so much to see and explore - you never get enough. 030.jpg

Nice is a perfect place if you like sunshine and beaches. It has a 5 kilometer long beach with a promenade where you can walk or skate along. There’s several bars and cafés at the beach if you feel like taking a coffee or maybe a drink while watching the sunset.

There is not only the beaches to enjoy in Nice. There’s a large range of discotheques and pubs in the centre as well as in the cities nearby. My favorites was a Scandinavian pub called “Le Thor” and an Irish one called Ma Nolan's. They offer good food for a cheap price and they are nice to hang at. Especially Le Thor felt so familiar in a way, because they spoke a language I could understand like Norwegian or Swedish.

Me with two friends at Ma Nolan’s


We also went out in Monaco, where the places are more luxurious and entrance fees more expensive. It was a fun experience to party in a place like that. The places were nicely decorated and it was a totally another atmosphere in those places.

While you are in Nice there’s two places close to Nice that you should visit - Monaco and Cannes. Monaco is a small country just twenty minutes from Nice. It is a rich country and you notice that everywhere you walk - the high class on cars driving past you, appartments and the lovely harbour with many many yachts. I could never imagine seeing so many Ferraris or enormous yachts passing by like they did there. It’s impossible to describe it - you have to see it with your own eyes.

Cannes is the town where the well-known film festival is held. A lot of famous people are there during that festival. Apart from that festivale the French Riviera has a lot of famous people living there and visiting the whole year round. When I was there David and Victoria Beckham visited Nice. They have a house outside Nice. Angelina Jolie gave birth to her child at the hospital a kilometer from the hotel I worked at - so you never know who ju may run into.d:\foton\2008\nice,frankrike\resor\monaco\2008-07-19\047.jpg


In Nice there’s three streets that makes a triangle - Avenue de Suède, Rue Paradis and Avenue de Verdun. On these streets you find exclusive shops as Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Hermès, Cartier, Armani, Kenzo och Max Mara. There’s also a big mall called Galeries Lafayette. There they have everything from make-up and clothes to food and home furnishings. This mall you find everywhere in France; it’s expensive and sells a lot of brand named things. If you prefer cheaper prices you choose Avenue Jean Medecin. There you find a lot of different shops like H&M and Zara and so on. You find something for every single person.

Well, as you all have read it was totally different surroundings than Mariehamn. I can warmly recommend you to go there. Even if I worked five days a week I had time to do much more than I ever could imagine.

Heidi Sipola HM-3

First day

It was a little bit more than one year ago that I packed my belongings and flew from Helsinki to Oslo. From there I took the train to a little mountain village called Geilo…

On the left side the house that we lived in

It may seem to you as a weird choice to perform your internship abroad in Norway but to me it was a very natural choice. This is because I have been in Sweden and did not find anything new for me there. Denmark is also within the Nordic countries but I did not want to go there because I have never really understood a word of what they were saying. It sounded to me almost like they were trying to talk Swedish with a potato in their mouth. So Norway it was.

I remember the day that I had to get out of bed early to catch the flight to Oslo. These were very interesting times since I had never before lived so far from home. I was skeptic but still open minded. Now I had to live and work in a country that I did not know awful lot about. All I knew was that Norwegians are rich and love cod and Black Metal.

When I arrived to Oslo I almost missed the train to Geilo since my plane was late. I can still remember as yesterday my train trip up to the mountains. The nature was amazing with the colors of early fall. Even if I have always been a city boy, the nature gives me a big kick from time to time. The train trip lasted for four hours even if the distance on the map is only 200 kilometers. The reason is that the train has to climb up to the mountains between the fjords.

When I arrived to Geilo after all, there was a car to get me to the hotel where I was going work. When I arrived at the hotel I met the Restaurant Manager who took me to the house where almost everyone who worked at the hotel lived. She gave me my room and said to me that I have one hour to get back to the hotel to begin my first day. When I came back to the hotel I got a small tour of all the facilities and after that I started to work. I was pretty lost in the beginning, especially on my first day. After my first day I had nine more to go before I got my first day off…

My friend doing a trick...

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