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SPOTLIGHT ON Alper Oztok, General Manager, Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis

By Sharon Hirschowitz, Global Head of Media & Communications for The International Luxury Hotel Association
19 March 2023
4 min read
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Alper Oztok talks about how working in various cultures has influenced their approach to managing staff and guests. He also discusses the inspiration behind the recent room redesign and the unique features of the Presidential Suite. The challenges faced during the year-long renovation process are explored, as well as the training programs in place for staff to ensure exceptional service for guests.

How have your experiences working in various cultures and countries influenced your approach to managing staff and guests at Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis? 

I do think in a positive and very good way, living in Europe, Asia, Caribbean and Mexico definitely helped me to better understand those cultures, learn their traditions, foods so that I can make meaningful connections and build trust. Representing an international and world known hotel brand in St. Louis also allows us to host many guests or employees from around the globe. Ultimately, we are in the business of building relationships which makes us unique compare to other professions.

Alper Oztok, General Manager, Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis

Can you tell us about the inspiration behind the recent room redesign and the design concept for the new rooms and suites?  

The main source of inspiration for the rooms redesign was the City of Saint Louis. We wanted to embrace the city’s celebrated monuments, including the Gateway Arch, Mississippi Riverfront, Ead’s Bridge, and Laclede Landing. We wanted the guests to feel the ultimate relaxation and comfort.  We also wanted to make sure there was a sense of continuity throughout the hotel, from when you first set foot in the lobby, to your room so textures and colors from the public spaces and corridors and are carried through to the guest rooms.

Can you share some challenges you faced during the year-long renovation process and how you overcame them? 

 It has not been an easy year long process for sure,  it took a lot of planning, organizing and communication for about 3 years and then we got hit by Covid but the team at the property has done a terrific job rising to those challenges, handled each and every one of those diligently with a positive, can do attitude which was priceless. Ultimately, we all are very proud of the outcome and the positive employee & guest experiences created which is something we have been celebrating as a team.

Can you walk us through the unique features of the Presidential Suite, including the stunning views and locally inspired artwork?

The Presidential is our largest and most sumptuous suite with many additional features, such as study/office and a media room. The master bathroom is extremely large and has double sinks, a separate shower room, and a showstopping freestanding slipper tub with stunning views of the Mississippi.  It’s also a great space for entertaining with a nice size dining area, and kitchen that has its own service door to the hallway.  Since it’s located on the 19th floor, the views are just breathtaking, and it’s a show just to watch the colors of the sky change from dawn to sunset.

How do you ensure that your staff delivers exceptional service to guests, and what training programs do you have in place? 

 I know that the best way to enable our people to deliver exceptional guest experiences is through a world-class employee experience and company culture.  Our Golden Rule  (treat others the way you want to be treated) has always been a key pillar and is core to who we are.  We do provide a variety of training programs to our teams in a class room setting or on-line depending on the role that they are in but everything starts with our introductory class called “Embark” where we introduce new team members to Four Seasons culture and the foundation, so that they understand our values and the purpose in business.  

TAGS: People