Ms. Lamiaa Aasem, you have a long and rich history of successful work in the field of hotelling. Could you give us some brief autobiographic information telling our readers when you started work in the field of tourism and hotelling?
I started work at a very early stage when I was a student at the Faculty of Arts Ain Shams University. At that time there was an advertisement by Egypt Travel Company looking for people who could speak different languages to work as guides for the delegations that were going to come to Egypt to attend the African Cup of Nations Finals. I was interviewed and approved by the company and I was selected to accompany the the minister of sports and youth of Burkina Faso. I interpreted a lot of interviews with ministers and many TV channels and this was my first and early experience in the field of tourism. Afer I graduated I worked in the reception department of Le Meriden Hotel Cairo, then I got a chance to work for Coca Cola International Company where I gained great experience in the field of marketing and puplic relations. Then I returned to work at hotels as I worked in the regional office of Grand Hayat hotels and resorts in Egypt. Next, I moved on to Sheraton Royal Gardens and Intercontinental Abu Soma then Iberotel Hotels, Solimar, Jaz Marriott Hotels at the Red Sea then Sofitel Hotels and Semiramis Intercontinental. And finally, here I’m working for Sharm Dreams Group, the owner of Hilton Sharm Dreams hotels, Cleopatra Hotel , Hilton Fayrouz, Hilton Mrsa Alam, Iberotel Borg El-Arab, Coral Newbie, Marriott Old Palace Marsa Alam. A long career which spanned over 25 years in the field of hotels public relations.
Congratulations on your new position at Sharm Dreams!
Thank you very much.
From your point of view, what are the steps the state should follow to boost tourism?
I think the state can do a lot to boost tourism. For example, it should exert extensive efforts to restore and renovate the tourist attraction areas, train and raise the awareness of the people working at these places and make massive commercial advertising campaigns that invade the world tourist market. The concerned authorities have started doing this in some countries already. We could also benefit from the visits of world famous political and sports figures like the Vatican Pope, the world famous footballer Leo Messi, Ronaldo’s family and Ronaldinho. This reflects high level of awareness and creative thinking outside the box. The state coud also combine tourist and medical campaigns together showing our areas which enjoy healing elements and healthy environment.
How do you see the future of tourism in Egypt in the coming five years?
Tourism in Egypt has gone through tough times lately. However, I’m optimistic and I believe that tourism will flourish in Egypt in the coming period. Statistics show that the number of tourists increases year after year in all types of tourism whether at beaches, historic places or for conferences and getting medical treatment.
How do you see competitiveness in the field of hotelling and what is the hotel required to offer to get the approval and satisfaction of the greatest number of customers possible?
Competitiveness is an essential requirement and it is fair and for the benefit of the tourist and the field of tourism in general. As for the hotel, it is supposed to do a lot of things. Basically, it should provide a tourist attractive atmosphere from the very moment the tourist arrives at the hotel and by the very first person receiving them to the last person who bid them farewel giving them a flower or maybe a small gift that makes them remember and miss our country and wish to visit us again. That is to say, the tourist should be given the care, uniqueness and comfort of unforgettable experience. Of course providing this atmosphere requires a lot of hard work from all the departments of the hotel.
What are the best ways you prefer to follow to attract the greatest number possible of customers?
Looking for and presenting all that is new is the key. New things and new innovative and creative ideas always have their attractive appearance and appeal to all people. So, we have to think of everything new to attract more customers to us.
What about the social activity at your personal and professional levels?
All international hotels have plans for social activities which include participation in charitable events, celebrating the Earth Day … etc which shows international interest in the social side to react with the society they live and work in. As for my personal level, I always like to be part of the society and take part in many social activities. This is essential part in my life.
Away from work
What are your hobbies?
Reading and travel.
Who is your favourite male singer/s?
Abd el-Halim Hafez.
And your favourite female singer/s?
Shadia and Elissa.
What are the works you liked most in Ramadan 2017?
“Halawet El-Donia” (the beauty of the world) series.
A daily habit of yours?
Reading the news.
The most important quality in your character?
I believe that however grown up or great a human becomes, they can learn something new every day even from those who are younger or less in position than them.
What about your character flaw?
Your favourite place where you spend your holiday?
At any quiet place by the sea.
What does fashion mean to you?
Do you have a favourite fashion desiger?
I’ve Saint Laurent and Calvin Klein.
What do you think of “What Happens” magazine especially it organizes a festival that is the first of its kind as is based on voting from the Arab audience only and is held each year in a different Arab country and the second round will be held in Kuwait?
The magazine is wonderful especially it has readers not only in Egypt but in the Arab countries too. The artistic and cultural content is wonderful and of a high quality standard. I attended its first festival and noticed that a great number of the leading artists, media figures and businessmen in the Egyptian society attended it. I wish it could reach international levels.
Thank you very much for this interview and we wish you more and more success in your career and your personal life.
I’d like to thank you very much. It is an honour and pleasure to have this interview with your magazine.
By\ Mohamed farid