Paul Kerr, CEO – Small Luxury Hotels of the World

Paul Kerr, CEO of SLH

Small Luxury Hotels of the World are run by hoteliers and began over 20 years ago in 1991.

Paul Kerr, the company’s CEO, began his career flipping burgers for Happy Eaters, moved on to accounting and eventually settled with his passion for luxury travel, providing hotels, agents and consumers with a unique and reliable service.

How long have you been in the travel industry? I’ve been involved in the travel industry for twenty five to thirty years.

What drew you to work in the industry? I really related to the product on offer and saw opportunities to improve industry dynamics.

What do you like most about your job? Although I have a routine throughout the year, I have fantastic freedom of choice. A lot of our hotels are situated in the Mediterranean, on the water and I have a passion for sailing, so that’s beneficial. Mixing business with pleasure is always great.

Who do you admire and see as a role model in the travel industry? Early on, I began flipping hamburgers at Happy Eaters in the UK and met Michael Piccard, who encouraged me to become a qualified accountant and pursue my endeavours.

What do you want to see improve in the industry? Within the small luxury space, it would be nice if every hotel offered a packing service.

What destinations are on your travel bucket list? Definitely I want to go up the Amazon River and I’m also looking forward to visiting Argentina in the near future. South America is one of our key expanding markets and gives me a great excuse to visit.

What are three things you must always take with you when you travel? I always have my iPad. I suffer from sleep apnea, so I have to take my sleep machine, which is always interesting as not all hotels have outlets near to the bed. Thirdly, I need my gym gear, it’s another must on my packing list.

If you were on a cancelled flight and the only option to get from A to B was by land, what mode of transport would you use and name three people you’d take with you? If I didn’t have to travel by land, I’d certainly sail! I think the most interesting experience I’ve had was on a large coach in India and I sat in the front passenger seat with this incredible panoramic view, so that would be my mode of transport. As for who I’d take with me; I’d take the driver, a close friend and I suppose I’d have to take my girlfriend too!

Source = e-Travel Blackboard: P.T
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