Spotlight on Berrie Palazzo Darsonval, Clink Hostels

Name: Berrie Palazzo Darsonval   

Job Title: Sales Director

Company: Clink Hostels

Member Since: 2019

 

I believe the biggest challenge for hostels now is being able to deliver a social experience with the constraint of social distancing and hygiene. Our main demographic is ready to travel and they thrive on social interaction, so if you nail this, you will be fine!

Tell us a bit about your role and how it supports the business?

I am currently the Sales Director for Clink hostels where I am responsible for achieving our annual sales targets by developing and executing our strategic plans and building/maintaining strong customer relationship. I am also involved in the Clink Executive Management Team where we make strategic decisions for the business.

What has been your career highlight to date?

Helping grow a business from 1 to 7 hostels (2 still due to open) and winning a British Youth Travel Award. It was lovely to be recognised for our hard work and passion by the industry.

What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?

Always be underestimated, it will give you a competitive advantage!

What is coming up for your company in the next 12/18 months?

Clink Hostels are focused on developing new hostel sites in Dublin and Lisbon and looking for more opportunities to expand its property portfolio. We were delighted to acquire Ecomama and Cocomama hostels in Amsterdam earlier this year and add them to our family.

Covid-19 has had a huge impact on our industry, what is the one thing that you have learnt personally or professionally during this time?

It is essential to look after your guests and team members first and foremost, finances are of course important but won’t exist if you don’t put people first. Going to work because you love it is fundamental, more so in a crisis.

The pandemic has reminded me why I do what I do every day and why I love it. Our guests and team members feel our passion and that will help us in our recovery by them confidently choosing us.

As we head towards recovery what do you think the challenges and opportunities are for our sector?

I believe the biggest challenge for hostels now is being able to deliver a social experience with the constraint of social distancing and hygiene. Our main demographic is ready to travel and they thrive on social interaction, so if you nail this, you will be fine!

Name three positives to come out of lockdown
  • I believe any company not true to its values would have been unmasked by now and will have no other choice to reassess what they want to achieve and more importantly why and this is a good thing. If they don’t, they may not survive.
  • For consumers in general, I believe it will cement the fact that experiences have more value than material possessions and it is key to spend time with the people we love when we can.
  • I am hoping we will also collectively understand the impact of our consumption on the world and decide to travel more sustainably.

Find our more about BETA member Clink Hostels here