Bali to represent Indonesia in international hotel receptionist competition

Bali will represent Indonesia in an international competition for hotel receptionists in Hamburg, Germany, from Jan. 15 to 19.

Ni Putu Wulan Septiandari of The Stones Legian Bali will be the participant from Indonesia for "The Receptionist of The Year" competition held by AICR International (International Association of Deputy Managers and Front Office Managers of Luxury Hotels) to win the David Campbell Trophy.

Wulan, as she is fondly called, made her way to the international competition after winning the national championship held in Jakarta by the Hotel Front Liner Association (HFLA) Indonesia. In this competition held last month, she beat eight other finalists from fine hotels in Bali, Jakarta and Bandung.

She was crowned Indonesia's Receptionist of The Year 2013 after a series of competition-based tests and live interviews on stage by the judges, and brought home the KABA trophy to Bali.

Wulan, a graduate of the STP Nusa Dua Bali tourism academy, never expected she could be the best in the national competition and would make her way to Germany to compete at the global level.

"When I was asked to join this competition, I was not confident, I felt not good enough, and so nervous in front of the judges, but I tried to do my best," said the girl, who has been a front liner for only 15 months.

She recalled her long journey joining the local competition in Bali, then packing her bags for Jakarta to participate in the national competition along with other two participants from Bali.

"We had a written test, a role play with actors and top hoteliers, and then a live interview on stage with five judges asking various questions on general topics, and skills," she said, adding that she would do her best to represent Indonesia in the international competition.

Peter Brampton, general manager of The Stones Legian Bali, expressed the hotel management's support for Wulan to participate in the international competition.

"We're thrilled because we're only a new hotel. Wulan has been with us since the pre-opening, right from the birth of this hotel, we're very proud of her. Indonesia's chance is in good hands being represented by Wulan," he said.

Conducted annually, the competition has the main objective of being a training tool for the younger generation, as well as the future of AICR and the hospitality industry.

HFLA Indonesia has participated in the international competition for the past two years.

This year will mark its third year of participation. In early 2013, Made Trisnadewi of The Legian, took second place and made the world aware of the potential of Indonesian receptionists on the international stage.

"With such an achievement, we would like to create awareness of the importance of the profession for future generations, and to elevate the state of hotel front liners' professionalism to be on a par with their international colleagues, as sophisticated travelers are expected to flood Indonesia, especially Bali," said Anak Agung Bagus Bhaskara, chairman of HFLA Bali.

This competition also gained support from Bali Hotels Association (BHA), as stated by chairman of the association, Alessandro Migliore, "It is really important for hotels to gain experience from this kind of competition because competition makes us stronger."

The winner of the international competition will be awarded the David Campbell trophy, to honour the late David Campbell. He was a Chef de Reception at The Ritz Hotel, Paris, after gaining a wealth of international experience.

In memory of Campbell and in acknowledgment of his dedication and passion for the industry, the International Receptionist of the Year Competition was formed, with a trophy designed and sponsored by the Paris AICR section to be presented each year.