Finally, a hotel in UST: ‘Hotel 1611’ opens doors to guests

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Photo grabbed from UST Education High School Graduates Association.

A FULLY operational hotel-laboratory inside the University is now open to campus visitors.

Hotel 1611, at the 5th floor of Buenaventura G. Paredes O.P. Alumni Center Building, had a soft opening during the Dominican retreat last October 2015 and has been fully operational since January 2016.

The hotel, funded by UST and under the management of the Hotel and Restaurant Management (HRM) Department, is open to guests who are required to secure a year-long advanced reservation due to high demand, HRM Department Chairwoman Evangeline Timbang told the Varsitarian.

“It’s not open to walk-in. Hindi pwedeng kahit sino ay pupunta [bigla] because we are protecting the interest of students and those heading the training. Maraming alumni at visitors na interesado kaya buong taon puno agad ‘yung listahan,” Timbang said.

Guests are allowed to make room reservations by writing a letter of intent to the dean and regent of the College of Tourism and Hospitality Management (CTHM).

Timbang said opening a hotel was a requirement of the Commission on Higher Education for schools offering HRM, and was the University’s move to begin a “hatchery” for future Thomasian hospitality professionals.

“The in-campus laboratory hotel serves as a hatchery for future hospitality professionals where they learn the application part of the theories learned in the lecture rooms,” Timbang said.

Students using the hotel-laboratory are CTHM seniors enrolled in hotel practicum and in-house practicum, juniors enrolled in basic front office operations and sophomores enrolled in institutional housekeeping.

CTHM students were previously trained in the Domus Mariae, the first laboratory guest residence in UST located behind the University pool.

Hotel operations, facilities, revenue

Students who undergo training at Hotel 1611 follow Association of Southeast Asian Nation (Asean) service standards, meaning basic hotel operations. These include confirming guest reservations, rooming procedures, preparation of billing statements, welcoming guests, check-ins and check-outs, meal preparations and cleaning and making up rooms.

“Hindi siya role-play, [here, it is] actual and live. [The students] have the chance to give guest assistance and are challenged to find solutions to any operational problem that may arise,” Timbang said.

The hotel has 12 fully air-conditioned guest rooms, each having its own mini refrigerator, coffee-making set, safety box, Wi-Fi, 40-inch LED smart television, DVD player, hair dryer, flat iron, iron board and emergency light.

The hotel features five “Pontifical view rooms,” which face the UST grounds; five Tamarind Ville view rooms on the side of Sampaloc or Padre Noval Street; and two inner suite rooms.

A card door lock system and closed-circuit televisions (CCTVs) were installed in every room to ensure the safety of hotel guests and provide a 24-hour monitoring of the hallways.

Other rooms and facilities in the hotel are the fitness area, reception counter, administration office, housekeeping room, health bar or café and a business center.

A wine room and an executive lounge will be added in the next academic year 2017 to 2018.

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