Exciting New Energy as Three Women Take Leadership Roles at Four Seasons Hotel Abu Dhabi at Al Maryah Island

August 30, 2022,
Abu Dhabi, U.A.E.

The team at Four Seasons Hotel Abu Dhabi at Al Maryah Island is stronger than ever, thanks to the arrival of three highly accomplished women in leadership roles: Lara Haddad, Director of Sales; Sandra Lakic, Spa Manager; and Caroline Pouzin, Front Office Manager. All three are valued Four Seasons veterans – two returning to the company and one transferring from within the UAE.

“I feel very fortunate to be surrounded by such strong female co-workers,” says Olivier Thomas, General Manager for the Hotel and Four Seasons Regional Spa Lead. “We have more than 300 team members and nearly 30 percent are women – with 17 in key leadership roles.”

Based on the belief that “happy employees create felicity and great memories among guests,” Four Seasons has always seen people as the organisation’s greatest asset and the key to success. Every team member benefits from a sense of dignity, pride and reward in what they do. Not only does satisfying guests depend on the united efforts of many individuals, the team is most effective when everyone works together cooperatively.

As Olivier explains, “Every woman on our team contributes in a way that goes far beyond her role. These women push Four Seasons to be an agent of change in Abu Dhabi, to shift perceptions and to create opportunities for more women to attain professional fulfilment. I’m so proud we have such outstanding female talent and that I get to work with such a diverse group of people.”

It gives Olivier great pleasure to introduce these three highly educated Four Seasons veterans as part of the team in Abu Dhabi:

Lara Haddad, Director of Sales

  • 15 years of hospitality experience
  • First Four Seasons Assignment: Four Seasons Hotel Beirut

Born in Beirut, Lara studied in France and received her Master’s Degree in Luxury Hospitality Management from the Vatel Institute in Nîmes, along with another Master’s in International Tourism from the University of Perpignan. After initial hotel positions in France, St. Barts and Dubai, Lara returned to her home city and joined Four Seasons Hotel Beirut, becoming Director of Catering Sales – and winning recognition as Manager of the Year in EMEA. She continued in Catering Sales with Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach, then moved to Assistant Director of Sales at Four Seasons Hotel Abu Dhabi, handling sales for the whole operation. After a recent interlude with another hotel group in Kuwait, Lara has now returned to Four Seasons Abu Dhabi as the official Director of Sales. “I love the role sales plays in supporting the entire organisation from a revenue perspective. At the same time, I enjoy guiding our sales team and working with our clients, developing business strategies and helping to arrange stays and large-scale sales events. I’m so proud to represent Four Seasons and to maintain our leading position in the market.”

Sandra Lakic, Spa Manager

  • 10 years of hospitality experience
  • First Four Seasons Assignment: Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach

Originally from Croatia, Sandra studied at Serbia’s University of Novi Sad, earning a Master’s Degree in Management in Tourism and Hospitality. She began work in the hotel world in Belgrade and quickly discovered her interest in spa and fitness. As Sandra explains, “I enjoy helping people learn about health and wellbeing, especially in the context of a hotel where they can really focus on relaxation.” She soon moved to the tourism capital of Dubai, specialising in spa management at major hotels. In 2018, she joined Four Seasons Resort Dubai at Jumeirah Beach, becoming Assistant Director at The Pearl Spa and Wellness. During her tenure, the spa won numerous international awards. “Four Seasons is a leader in the spa industry because there’s such a serious commitment to the highest standards in service and luxury.” Now Sandra is bringing her expertise to a management role at the sister facility, The Pearl Spa and Wellness Abu Dhabi. “I love interacting with our guests, ensuring their needs are anticipated. I want them to create a personal relationship with The Pearl Spa and Wellness, so it’s much more than just a visit.” Sandra also values the Four Seasons tradition of leading by the Golden Rule. “I inspire everyone to treat each other the way they wish to be treated.”

Caroline Pouzin, Front Office Manager

  • 9 years of hospitality experience
  • First Four Seasons Assignment: Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris

Caroline’s hospitality history began in France in the eastern city of Besançon, where she first received her receptionist and housekeeping diploma. Inspired by the hotel business, she went on to earn her Bachelor’s Degree at the International Hospitality Management School of CMH Academy in Paris. She began at a major Paris hotel, before being hired on at the legendary Four Seasons Hotel George V, Paris as a manager in the housekeeping department. Caroline pursued her studies further at Ferrandi University in Paris, where she obtained her Master of Science in Hospitality Management. After graduation, Caroline moved to the UAE and worked for a variety of hotels before her most recent move. “I’m so thrilled to return to the Four Seasons family,” says Caroline. “Right from my start at the George V, I’ve been impressed by the international Four Seasons organisation and everything it represents. Working in the front office, I feel fully connected to all aspects of the Hotel – making sure everything runs smoothly and seamlessly for our staff and our guests.”