The Mews Blog > Life at Mews: Spanish stories with Albert Arranz
Albert Arranz was asked to join Mews three times before he took the plunge. A Barcelona native, he worked as General Manager at Golden Tulip in his home city and was reticent to switch to the other side of hospitality.
But from the moment he finally said yes he had no regrets, and has been with Mews for over three and a half years, currently enabling our customers as Senior Customer Success Manager. We asked Albert how his Mews story unfolded and what he’d say to anyone thinking of joining Mews.
Let’s begin with your life before Mews...
I’ve been at Mews for more than three and a half years, but I’ve been in the hotel industry for my entire life – over twenty years. I began at a hotel in Barcelona, then Punta Cana, then Ibiza and then back to Barcelona; I think it’s important experience these different styles of hospitality.
The beautiful thing about my last project in Barcelona is that I was there from the very beginning of the hotel, from when it was being built. It was a great experience!
How did you come to work at Mews?
It all started with a call from Ildefonso. I’d known him for a while and we’d sometimes meet up for dinner and catch up. The first time we met after he joined Mews he was saying all these amazing things and I was getting quite jealous...
But it wasn’t quite the right time for me; I still needed to build a few things at the hotel. But then during another dinner around the end of 2018 he was asking me again if I’d like to join and finally I said yes: it’s time for an interview!
What made you want to join Mews?
It was partly my belief in the power of a cloud PMS. When I was GM in the hotel, the only room I could work in was my office, which was located on a basement floor. I didn’t know that you could take your phone, go to the bar, and do check-ins and check-outs, run your operations etc.
That was my first impression of Mews: a brilliant product. After that, it was about the culture. About the ambition of the founders, Matt and Richard.
How was is being on the other side of hospitality?
It was scary at first because I was used to being on the inside of the hotel. But the most rewarding part now is that I’m in touch with many different kinds of properties and I’m able to share my past experience as they share theirs, so there’s a great understanding.
I used to think that a hotel had to be run in a particular way, but now I know a hotel can be run in many different ways. Sometimes it’s mindset or generational and sometimes is cultural. For example, I have clients in Italy, Brussels, Berlin, Sweden, Denmark, Colombia, Mexico, Spain, Portugal... You learn about different cultures which is beautiful.
How does your hotelier experience help you in customer success?
Hoteliers really appreciate talking to someone who understands their pain points. Sometimes they ask me: Albert, what did you do in the past? What do you think we should do? They’re looking for an advisor and I’m in a good position to provide good advice.
What would you say to your past self when you were thinking about joining Mews? Any regrets?
I’d say: I’m so happy you made this decision! It changed my entire life.
I’m a very passionate person and when I was working at the hotel in Barcelona, I was suffering and it’s not healthy. Mews gives you the opportunity to balance your life, your experiences and your work. Mews has a lot to offer.
What’s your experience with Mews in the Spanish market?
It hasn’t always been easy. We started slowly and when the pandemic came we it was a challenge to keep customers. I was happy that we didn’t lose any key accounts, but Spain suffered a lot during the pandemic so it was difficult.
Now, in 2022, I start to feel and see more positive reactions about Mews in Spain. When I’m talking to my clients I get comments like, ‘Wow, Mews is everywhere’. They congratulate us on acquisitions like Bizzon and on winning Best PMS for Independent Hotels.
Do you work from home or the office?
I'm flexible. I'm happy to work from home – I think that I work better from home because I'm more focused on everything. Now we have a coworking space in Barcelona, and sometimes once a week or once every two weeks, we go to the office and we have dinner, we see each other, we talk and it's nice. This way you don't lose the relationship with the people who live in in Barcelona.
You mentioned culture earlier: has the culture of Mews changed over the years?
A few of us were actually talking earlier about how Mews has changed. We’re hiring twenty, thirty people a month, so it’s inevitable the culture has to change a little. But actually I think that’s the beautiful part because you then become a part of that change. We’re no longer a start-up, we have to grow up a bit and people are doing that with us.
What I love to see – and what I see happening more at Mews now – is that we are bringing in people outside of the hotel industry who are specialists in their own roles. It’s great that we have so many people who come from hospitality, but we also need these outsiders to solve problems in different ways.
What would you say to someone who’s thinking about joining Mews?
I would ask: do you like to dance rock’n’roll? If you do, join Mews. The way Mews treats its employees, I don’t think you’re going to find it in many companies. When I tell my friends all the benefits we have, they say: excuse me?!
Specifically, remote work is a big thing. I can work here in Barcelona, I can drive to my parents and work from my laptop there, I can go to Mallorca for a week and work from there. No concerns. Flexibility with holidays is also important. The Thanks Ben card we get that’s topped up every month with a personal allow allowance to spend on anything we like – I’ve never seen anything like that.
But maybe the most important thing is the flexibility of when you work. It doesn’t matter if you start a 9, or 8:15. It doesn’t matter if you need to take your kids to school or if they’re sick and you have to go and pick them up. Mews gives you all this flexibility.
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