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Quintaya Ellis

Community give back

By Hospitality in the Caribbean


The sandals foundation strongly believes in giving back to the community, and so do I. We brought numerous school supplies, games, and sanitary items to donate to different schools within the community.

The foundation team was so grateful and excited. We began setting the things up on the table. Both parties exchange gratitude for the gifts and the opportunity to give.

Farewell, Jamaica

By Hospitality in the Caribbean


All good things must come to an end. To say our goodbyes we had a departing dinner with the managers the night before we departed. We were allowed to express gratitude for allowing us to gain exceptional experience from their team. The staff made it feel like a home away from home.

During this time, we watch the video of the team put together of our entire week. I was ready to cry, lol. The team, my classmates, Professor Dodge and Dawn and of course myself  made this trip a success. On the last day, we received handwritten cards from the staff wishing us success as we continued our journey at FIU. This was such a memorial moment.

Back to work

By Hospitality in the Caribbean


The second department I chose to work with was the environmental health and safety department. This department ensures that the hotel runs effectively under government laws. They are in charge of ensuring the resort has all the proper licensing to operate the business. Furthermore, they provide alternative ways to maintain their earth check status. The manager Jardine also told us some methods the hotel uses to recycle, such as collecting plastic water bottles. They also sell the shredded paper to local companies that may need it. We also learned about their waste management procedures.

After speaking about the department’s responsibility, I conducted two audits. These audits occurred at the kids’ camp and the nurses’ station. After completing this task, I gain more insight into safety and what they do in the department. I enjoyed doing this as I did hands-on work alongside the manager. The best part of it was that she gave me a mango. So delicious and juicy!

Adventure Time

By Hospitality in the Caribbean


The dress code was swimwear, sunscreen, shades, a beach hat, and good vibes. Next, we sailed in the catamaran to a snorkel site. I was extremely nervous as I had never snorkeled before. However, the safeguard, Andrew, guided me every step of the way. I’m so glad I faced my fear because seeing all the fish surrounding us was beautiful. After snorkeling, our next stop was Dunn’s river falls. The river is about 180 feet high and takes about one hour and 30 mins to climb. Arriving via boat made the view ten times better.

We headed towards where we met our tour guide, who helped us safely make it to the top. The water felt so amazing. After making it to the top, we headed back to the boat. Let the party begin! The boat crew welcomed us back with food, drinks, and good music. The crew sure knows how to party. After returning to the Beaches, we went to the water park for a few minutes. We later got dressed for our next water excursion, the luminous lagoon. It is one of the four in the world, and Jamaica is known to have a brightest blue color. It was exciting to see the water turn blue naturally. This was definitely “one for the books.”

Time to get to work

By Hospitality in the Caribbean


Early the following day, we got breakfast, then proceeded to the morning meeting to discuss which departments we would be in for the next two days. After the meeting, we received a resort tour from Ms. Ruth. Seeing that this was our first time on the property, this tour came in handy. During the tour, we saw the different room layouts they offer restaurants, the smoothie bar, the pool, the slide, the kids camp, and the gift shop. The tour lasted about an hour.

We then took the hotel shuttle to Sandals resort which was about 25 mins away from Beaches. Sandals is a resort solely for couples who are not couples who cannot stay at the resort. Our tour guide for this resort was Ms. Linsey. While on this property, we saw the Rabbit hole, which is only on the western side of the world. Next, we took a quick 10 min lunch on the property from the Jerk Shack. The jerk chicken, jerk sauce, and festival were terrific! After lunch, we continued our tour of the property. We took a golf cart to Romeo and Juliet suits and the hunt over the ocean with a glass bottom where people get married and can see the fish under them.

After touring the property, we had to head back to Beaches, where we split into various departments. For my first department, I chose Human Resources. The team members that work in this department welcomed me with open arms. I was given a rundown of what takes place in the department. After work, I headed down to the pool with the rest of my classmates to enjoy the rest of the evening.


Welcome to Jamaica|Arrival day

By Hospitality in the Caribbean


After several months of planning and preparation, we arrived in Jamaica. Yay! Once we completed the immigration process, refreshments were waiting for the use of the Sandals concierge at the airport. Next, the luggage was tagged, and we were on our way for a two-hour drive to Beaches Ocho Rios. Finally, we arrived on the property and were greeted by all the managers and their furry friends, Elmo and Grover. We took a few pictures with the team and then checked in. At check-in, we received cold, refreshing beverages and cold towels.
Later that evening, there was a welcome dinner on the Beach where the CEO and the Directors joined us. This dinner allowed us to network and hear about the managers’ career stories. While listening to their stories, we enjoyed some delicious authentic Jamaican food and fresh fruits. The sugar cane was terrific! A live band sang Jamaican folk songs while we danced the night away. We ended the night by watching the circus act and prepared for another exciting day.

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