Jamal Nasser is a multi-tasking member of staff at citizenM Amsterdam Schiphol. He welcomes guests, helps them to check in, answers their questions, brews top-quality coffee, shakes an exciting cocktail, keeps the bar clean and, if required, also offers room service. “We want our guests to really feel at home.”
citizenM ambassador is the name given to the role that Jamal Nasser performs with such enthusiasm at citizenM Amsterdam Schiphol. The job description is incredibly wide-ranging. One moment Jamal is a receptionist, the next a barista, cocktail shaker, porter or cleaner. But that does not deter him at all – on the contrary, he thrives in the job. “It’s the variety that makes this job so special, no two days are the same. We want our guests to really feel at home. That’s why we don’t have a formal reception area, but a cosy living room where you’re welcomed by an amazingly helpful team of versatile professionals.”
Jamal works a variety of day, afternoon and evening shifts at citizenM. In each shift, there are four members of staff, including the manager. A separate team runs the night shift. Jamal himself is from Lebanon and his colleagues come from various European countries, including Italy, Spain and the UK. “It’s great fun working in such a diverse team and together ensuring that our guests feel welcome. We go to great lengths to achieve that. Together we make sure that, even in the time of coronavirus, our guests have everything they need and all of them are safe.”
Of course, the hotel observes all of the coronavirus guidelines. That can be quite challenging, especially with all the recent changes. One of the measures that has affected citizen is working in set teams, in order to minimise staff changes. The handover is now done remotely and there are numerous additional rounds of cleaning. The hotel chain also brought forward the launch of an app that guests can use on their smartphones to check in and out and to regulate the atmosphere in their rooms (lighting, blinds, temperature, etc.). It has proved successful: there have so far been no infections among staff members.
Coronavirus has also affected occupancy levels. The hotel normally welcomes a lot of businesspeople from across the world, but their numbers have reduced and mainly been replaced by passengers stranded by the virus. Jamal expects the pandemic to continue to affect travel for a while. “We will need to adapt, and one of the ways we’re doing that is by coming up with different offers. For example, we’re now offering rooms for a day. Guests can have the use of a room from 08.00 to 18.00 in order to work or have a meeting. It’s an interesting option for people who are fed up of working from home.”
Jamal was recently delighted to discover the existence of the Spot Schiphol Community. “What an excellent idea for connecting people who work at Schiphol with each other. I’d really like to be part of that. Come along and have a coffee or drink with us and make use of our meeting rooms. In the future, we’d very much like to host a Spot Schiphol Community event.”
- Who: Jamal Nasser, ambassador at citizenM.
- What: citizenM is a Dutch hotel chain inspired by one wish: creating affordable luxury.
- Number of staff: 30 (Schiphol location).
- Number of locations in the Netherlands: 4 (Amsterdam, Rotterdam and Schiphol).
- Number of locations worldwide: 21.
- Location at Schiphol: next to the departure hall.
- Schiphol guests: business people and tourists.
- Proud of: our guest experience, our human dimension and our honest team.