Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait at Burj Alshaya
- Al Soor Street, Al Mirqab, PO Box 735, Safat, 13008, Kuwait
Director of Catering
Four Seasons Tenure
- Since 2022
- First Four Seasons Assignment: current
- Royal Saray Resort managed by Accor, Bahrain; Jumeirah Royal Saray, Bahrain; InterContinental Bahrain, an IHG Hotel; The Diplomat Radisson Blu Hotel, Residence and Spa, Bahrain; W Istanbul, Turkey; Soho House Istanbul, Turkey; Swissotel The Bosphorus, Istanbul, Turkey; Hilton International, Istanbul, Turkey
- Hotel & Tourism Management, Marmara University, Istanbul, Turkey
- Istanbul, Turkey
- Turkish, English
Co-ordinating a gala dinner for 1000 people, organising a surprise proposal, and soothing bridal nerves are all in a day’s work for Turkish-born Ayça Çivgin, Director of Catering at Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait at Burj Alshaya. And as she recalls the dolls’ tea-parties she planned with military precision as a child, her “lifelong passion for chinaware and pretty decorations,” and her 12-year-old-self’s insistence on multiple plates and glassware at the family dinner table, she laughs as she admits that she was perhaps always destined for a life spent organising lavish events.
A degree in Hotel & Tourism Management at Istanbul’s Marmara University was a logical progression for the young Ayça, who continued her studies with internships – beginning with Four Seasons Istanbul at Sultanahmet, aged just 20.
Seduced by the world of luxury hospitality and exhibiting exceptional organisational skills, she progressed from the events teams of Istanbul’s finest hotels to the home of high-end hospitality, GCC – first in Bahrain and now Kuwait. And every step of her journey has been rooted in her passion for connection and care.
“Hospitality is an opportunity to show love,” she explains. “My favourite thing has always been face-to-face connection with guests: getting to know them, listening to what they want and then recreating what it takes to make their event perfect.” Her favourite quote by writer Maya Angelou underpins every moment of every day: “People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
Key to Ayça’s success is her adaptability. Whether chartering private planes and co-ordinating multi-day events for hundreds of guests at a wedding or burning the midnight oil at Kuwaiti celebrations where buffet services commence at midnight, she takes every demand, pressure, change, and request in her stride. “Excel and my diary are my best friends,” she says with a smile. “And there is no such word as no in my vocabulary.”
At Four Seasons Hotel Kuwait at Burj Alshaya, she oversees stand-out business events, magical marriage proposals, heartfelt baby showers, best-ever birthdays, and the Hotel’s biggest draw: weddings. Each bridal event – with its unique couple-centric concept and bespoke culinary, musical, design and decorative approach – is handled with the same exacting attention to detail.
Amassing more than two decades of high-end event management (and counting), she is happiest when making dreams a reality. The many tens of families who still keep in touch – and whom she visits during her travels – are testament to the commitment and class she brings to the hundreds of occasions she coordinates each year. “I love keeping abreast of their lives and experiences, and knowing I’ve made an impact and become a part of their path in life,” she says fondly. And in return, one thing is certain: they will never forget how she made them feel.