Fabio is the co-owner of the beautifully located Lake Como Beach Hostel – just next to the Lake Como in Italy!
Fabio, you’ve been working quite some time in the hospitality industry, and now you have opened your own hostel – ‘Lake Como Beach Hostel’. Share your story with us!
What means a ‘hostel’ for you?
A hostel for me is a way of living…its more than accommodation, more than an international environment, more than a business. It’s simplicity, it means living slow, enjoy the simple things that every day happened. After some years working as IT consultant and working 6-7 hours a day in front a computer I realized that I was missing in time in doing simple things, smile to people, give hugs, and welcome people to my life…for me a hostel is all this!
How it all started? What is your story behind the ‘Lake Como Beach Hostel’?
I had my first experience in working in a hostel in 2009 where I startup a hostel with a guy that now is my business partner in my new hostel. After I’ve studied for some years tourism, marketing, I travel a bit and, after a while I realized that what I really want from my life was to run my own hostels…
So I’ve started to travel around hostels with also a business looking point…understanding opportunities and criticism about the business, looking at trends and numbers…then I choose that was time to open.
One day I receive a call from my actual business partner saying we have this opportunity …would you like this hostel? I answer yes its time…and now I just close the first season…
What motivated you to go into the hostel industry?
The idea of having my own business first…then the idea of welcome thousands of people in the place where I was born and that, in my opinion, is one of the best places in the world.
Sincerely I don’t know if I was willing to open a hostel somewhere else. I choose to open that hostel…my hostel…because of the strategic position on the beach, because when I was younger I was going there camping nearby and because I love too much my Lake (Lake Como)
In your opinion what makes your hostel unique?
It’s not easy to create uniqueness…it is one of the most tricking and difficult things for any kind of business…In my case, I would say that, for the moment, the uniqueness is the location. I don’t know how many hostels in Europe enjoy a position like Lake Como Beach Hostel, front lake, on the beach…But this uniqueness it’s not enough and I’m working also on other aspects…of course, the staff is one of the most important assets. In fact, sorry for them, but I’m not going to work too much with volunteers that don’t care too much about the destination…they are just interested in stay for free and enjoy this place for a couple of months. I’m looking for creating a great, high-value local staff that knows here and loves here around
What do you do at work that you enjoy so much you actually lose track of time?
One thing…and probably is the thing I like most…taking care of my guests. But at the end of the day, a half-hour by myself on my terrace with a beer looking at the lake is my recharging time.
How do you motivate your team and make sure that guests have a great experience?
It’s not easy to see people always motivated in their jobs…there are of course rules to respect but the main important things are to always smile and be present and welcome all guest requests when it is possible.
Do you have any favourite hostel story to share?
There are a lot of …also if my hostel life is really young…from the American that accidentally started the fire alarm and he was able to stop it with a chewing gum at 3 in the morning…passing to an Austrian guy that lost the room key and he was able to force and open the common area & bar late at night and he slept there on the floor. In the morning I woke him up at breakfast and I realized that he drunk all the Moretti beer of my fridge…
Thanks, Fabio for sharing!
Hostels are all about people. If you are a hostel staff, manager or owner and would like to share your story, contact me.