Meet Mark Lambson
The team at The Chester Residence is celebrating the arrival of Mark Lambson, their new general manager. Originally from Cape Town in South Africa, Mark who is 31, is no stranger to Scotland and has worked at luxury hotels including The Marcliffe in Aberdeen, and also the Isle of Eriska on the west coast. Mark is very excited about his new position and about coming to live in Edinburgh – a city he loves – with his wife Jeanieve and two daughters Sophia (5) and Addison, just two months. Curious to know more about Mark we quizzed him to help get to know him a bit better.
Why The Chester Residence and what do you love about Scotland?
“The first thing that struck me about the owners and management team at Chester and sister hotel in Aberdeen – Simpson’s Hotel – is how down to earth and family orientated everyone is. This is very refreshing in such a notoriously hard working industry, as balancing life and work with a very young family can be tricky. It’s a real bonus to be working with people who understand and make time for others with young family. I knew of the Wood family who own the hotel from living in Aberdeen, and have a great respect for their ethos as hoteliers – the guest is central to everything and investing in the product is what keeps it fresh and alive. It’s also a real privilege to be working with such a dedicated and focussed team who have won the coveted No1 spot with Tripadvisor.”
“My mum is Scottish and I spent eight years in Scotland when I was growing up, so I was familiar with the culture and people. This really gave me an appetite to come back and I’m delighted to have achieved my ambition of becoming the general manager of such a prestigious hotel in Scotland.’
What are your aspirations for the hotel?
“I want to continue the company ethos of providing the most superior service and maintaining its premier position with guests. I’d also like to help mentor and develop the team. My style of leadership is very much one of the ‘man manager’ - being firm, but fair, and I want to share the knowledge I have gained from working in some of the world’s most unique and special properties, where I learned so much about what makes a good general manager. I am very sociable and team orientated and believe that to get the best out of people you should lead by example and put the guest first. I want The Chester Residence to be a place which is revered for its training and service and where hospitality employees want to come and work. This can only be good for the guest at the end of the day.”
What do you do to relax?
“I’m a family man at heart and love spending my time off with my wife and two young daughters. I’m also very keen on sport and have to admit to being quite competitive. You can find me playing cricket, field hockey or rugby and I’ve joined the local teams, but the most precious time is spent teaching my five year old to swim.
What is your most memorable experience being in hotels?
I worked in a luxury gaming lodge, Singita, in South Africa, which was the most unique of experiences. Superior service of the highest calibre set against the natural back drop of a remote reserve where wild animals roamed within feet of you. I remember our ranger being asked once by a guest if the film The Lion King had been filmed there! I have also had the privilege of serving some A list celebrities over the years – British and international….but I can’t reveal any names….. discretion is my middle name!”