30-year-old Islam Ragab, from Egypt and now living in Washington, has taken on the role as front of house manager at Cairn Hotel on Osborne Road where he will be responsible for looking after guests visiting the venue as well as its neighbouring sister site, Carlton Hotel.
Islam will also work alongside the hospitality teams at Cairn Hotel’s on-site dining destinations – gastro cocktail bar 97 & Social and Asian-fusion restaurant Sohe – as well as colleagues in sales and marketing.
In a career that has spanned the globe, Islam has previously held positions at the five-star Maldives One & Only resort, Four Seasons Hotel Alexandria in Egypt, flydubai Airlines and Holiday Inn Kuwait, dealing in both sales and guest relations.
Before relocating to the UK, Cairn Hotel’s latest recruit won six titles in Egypt’s World Cup qualifier as a professional jockey but still manages to find time to ride daily at Bowes ManorEquestrian Centre in Chester-le-Street.
Islam said: “I was first attracted to Cairn Hotel following its refurbishment in 2015 which saw it climb up the ranks on TripAdvisor, where it is currently listed in the top 10 best-rated hotels in Newcastle. The food offering at Sohe was also a particular draw for me with strong comparisons to the cuisine served up in my native Middle East.
“It’s been exciting getting to know both the group’s values and the venue – all 43 of its rooms, the contemporary design and added benefits which it prides itself on. I’ve always taken pleasure in greeting a customer and being confident that they will enjoy their stay.”
In another move, adjoining restaurant Sohe has recently appointed a new sous chef who was born in India, raised in Japan and lives in Sunderland. Oberan Wilson, 34, will be supporting head chef Albi Tabaku on the latest menu launch which they designed together.
Simon Wright, Cairn Hotel general manager, said: “We are really pleased to welcome both Islam and Obi to the team who each have an incredibly colourful background, bringing with them creative ideas from their time overseas. They will no doubt prove great assets and help us to continue re-inventing what we have to offer to make it bigger and better.”
In the heart of Jesmond, Cairn Hotel is currently ranked at No. 8 on Trip Advisor in Newcastle upon Tyne as of April 2016. The Group provides high quality, affordable accommodation in stylish and contemporary surroundings welcoming guests staying for business or leisure with convenient parking and city centre transport links.
A luxury continental breakfast is also available to enjoy in the opulent setting of Sohe restaurant, included with any stay. For more information, visit: www.cairnnewcastle.com or call 0191 281 1358.
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