Park Hyatt Tokyo: An Interview
July 7, 2017
On June 29th, the BCCJ had the pleasure of interviewing Mr. Hervé Mazella, General Manager at the Park Hyatt Tokyo (BCCJ Corporate Plus Member). Mazella oversees operations of the iconic luxury hotel located in Nishi-Shinjuku. Occupying the top 14 floors of Shinjuku Park Tower, the hotel has 177 rooms including 23 suites, with floor-to-ceiling windows offering views of Tokyo & Mount Fuji, three restaurants, a lounge, two bars and a deli, while the Club on the Park Spa provides the ultimate in wellness & spa treatments.
Hervé Mazella, General Manager, Park Hyatt Tokyo
Hervé Mazella was born in Provence and studied at a hotel academy in France before furthering his studies in hotel management in both France and Germany. He subsequently received a Masters in Hospitality. Mazella is passionate about culinary and the “Arts de la table”. He was awarded the Vice Champion prize at the 1998 “Desserts of France” competition and worked in Michelin-starred Relais & Chateaux properties in Provence and the UK, including the Waterside Inn under the famous three Michelin star Chef Michel Roux.
In 2004, he moved to Monte Carlo to join the Events team of an international hotel group, and worked on various projects within the same group in different countries over the course of eight years.
In 2012, he joined Hyatt International in Hong Kong and was first appointed as Executive Assistant Manager – Food and Beverage before being further promoted to Hotel Manager of Grand Hyatt Hong Kong.
Since March 2016, Mazella has been General Manager of Park Hyatt Tokyo.
In his interview with the BCCJ, Mazella reflected upon his experiences in the UK and how his two years living and working near the small village of Bray in Berkshire shaped his outlook on life and his career.
What brought you to the UK?
At school my first language was German so English wasn't my forte. I wanted to improve and gain more international hotel experience by spending some time in the UK. I felt a little apprehensive to begin with, but as soon as I arrived, I loved it! Having the opportunity to work under the three Michelin star Chef Michel Roux was an incredible and unique experience.
What do you like about the UK?
The UK spirit of "work lots - have lots of fun" greatly appealed to me, and I liked their wit and their respect for tradition. I lived in the Maidenhead area not far from Eton - a beautiful area. The Waterside Inn is right by the Thames and the surrounding countryside is idyllic. Another great UK experience for me was meeting famous British celebrities who came to the restaurant including members of the Royal Family at the time of the Queen's Jubilee celebrations. I have so much respect and admiration for the Queen. She is probably one of the most reputable monarchs and she carries out her duties with such dignity and dedication.
What makes a good hotelier?
An authentic hotelier learns from experience. Working in different hotels in different locations gives one real life experiences one cannot learn at school. My work in several multi-national hotels helped me better prepare towards running the Park Hyatt. It is a people business. I feel that important traits to have as hotelier are dedication, passion, empathy and genuine care towards people. I also think it is essential to have a positive outlook on life. When I was in Cairo during the revolution, there were so many challenges, but if one always regards the glass as half full, There are always solutions to be found.
What is unique about the Park Hyatt Tokyo?
The timeless design and intimate luxury of this contemporary residence accompanied by Japanese hospitality makes it very special. The Park Hyatt Tokyo offers guests an unparalleled level of comfort and personalised service as well as top class gourmet dining options, including the New York Grill, made internationally famous by the 2003 film “Lost in Translation.” The view from the pool and the gym also enjoy considerable praise. Guests' feedback and wishes are given the highest consideration and so the hotel is constantly adapting while preserving its essence and identity. I also place great emphasis on diversity when hiring people - the more diverse the team, the stronger it is.
What inspires you?
Our people. I spend as much time as I can with guests and team members alike to listen to their opinions, feedback and suggestions. I treasure the team as they are the foundation of the hotel. The Park Hyatt Tokyo team are truly amazing in the work they do and in their achievements, and we get this confirmation regularly from our guests, too. Our team are attentive passionate, and are always focused on the well-being of people, carefully selecting the best product for our guests and anticipating their needs. They inspire me every day and I make a continuous effort to support them.
What is the nicest hotel you have ever stayed at?
No place ticks all the boxes, but any hotel that pays meticulous attention to detail and that is flexible will score highly for me. This is one of the things I am proud of at the Park Hyatt Tokyo. When I stayed here the first time before I joined the hotel, everyone was highly observant and immediately aware of my preferences. The next time I stayed, they remembered everything, making it feel like home. The employees noticed every detail right down to the charger I needed placed in a certain location or the way I like the bed made. Japanese service is unbeatable and makes every stay extra special. A caring team at any hotel will ensure high customer satisfaction.
What do you like about working in Japan?
I like that the Japanese are very observant and that they place so much value on high standards. I also like their subtle ways of communication which are very dignified and avoid confrontation. Do you know the Japanese term "nemawashi"? This is an informal process of quietly laying the foundation for a proposed change, by talking to the people concerned, and gathering support and feedback. It is considered a very important element in any major change, before any formal steps are taken, and successful "nemawashi" enables changes to be carried out with the consent of all sides. Taking the time to listen to people, finding ways to allow people from all cultures - I think these are excellent qualities in business negotiations and project management.
Read more about the Park Hyatt Tokyo on the official website HERE
Experience Park Hyatt Tokyo’s Suite Life with the new suite room brochure: