Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach
- 2800 South Ocean Boulevard, Palm Beach, Florida, 33480, U.S.A.
Four Seasons Tenure
- Since 2001
- First Four Seasons Position: Front Desk Agent, Four Seasons Hotel Chicago
- Four Seasons Resort and Residences Anguilla; Four Seasons Hotel Los Angeles at Beverly Hills; Four Seasons Hotel Westlake Village, California; Four Seasons Hotel Houston; Four Seasons Hotel Chicago
- Omaha, Nebraska, USA
- Bachelor of Fine Arts, Experimental Studies – Painting, Texas A&M University-Commerce; Studied Fine/Studio Arts, Yale University Summer School of Music and Art
From one stunning oceanside oasis to another, Billy joins Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach by way of Four Seasons Resort and Residences Anguilla. With him, Cueto brings a naturally personable demeanour, creative aptitude, and 20 years of experience at various Four Seasons, the only company for which he has ever worked.
“Embracing the Palm Beach way of life is easy when you are surrounded by the natural beauty of the resort’s coastal location and the innate charm of the storied island,” says Cueto. “I am thrilled to join such a dynamic team known for their exceptional and gracious service.”
In his position as Resort Manager, Cueto oversees all operational aspects of the Five-Star, Five-Diamond oceanfront oasis featuring 207 recently renovated guest rooms and suites, two restaurants including the resort’s flagship restaurant Florie’s by three-Michelin-starred Chef Mauro Colagreco, and the Forbes Five-Star Spa, as well as keeping employees engaged and motivated.
That last bit requires a lot of cheerleading and positivity, he adds, likening his efforts to “a vice principal rallying the student body before a big game.” It comes naturally to him. “It’s also very important because the main thing that goes into keeping our guests happy is a contented team.”
That same softness and gentleness extends to his approach to resort clientele. Cueto interacts with guests a lot to ensure they’re enjoying their stay, that they know who he is, and that they’re in safe hands. He believes strongly in projecting an air of confidence as well as warmth.
During his time in Anguilla, Billy made a notably positive impact on the island’s gem, named one of the Top Caribbean Hotels, having arrived after the community endured Hurricane Irma’s devastating aftermath. Billy was instrumental in the re-opening of the resort and supporting the team during this challenging time. “I always want to be the strongest resource possible for the team, resort, and ownership,” says Billy.
A child of the Midwest, Cueto originally found his way to Four Seasons out of necessity. An artist by nature, he received his Bachelor of Fine Arts in Experimental Studies – Painting from Texas A&M University-Commerce and studied art history in London before heading to Chicago in hopes of getting into graduate school for fine art. “But I missed the deadlines for application, so I needed something to do.”
His then-girlfriend had an idea. “She said, ‘you know, you’re good at cleaning, why don’t you be a janitor?’” The movie Good Will Hunting was raking in millions at the box office at the time, so he gave it some thought and sketched out a plan to housekeep at a hotel in the evening and create art by day. “A good friend told me, ‘if you’re going to work at a hotel here, you should work at the best in the city – Four Seasons.’”
After purchasing a new suit and tie, Cueto headed for Four Seasons Hotel Chicago. There was nothing available in housekeeping, but there was an opening at the Front Desk. “I remember looking at the palatial lobby, with fountains and marble and orchestral music and bellman with white gloves, and just being transformed.” Then, on his second day, the actor Will Smith walked by and waved. That was it: “I fell in love with the pageantry and what Four Seasons was all about right away.”
Cueto’s hotel skills grew with each new position, and his background helped, notably during a run as Front Office Manager at Four Seasons Hotel Houston when he got to oversee a renovation. “I was no longer an artist, but the Hotel became my art. I knew art history and colour theory, and I could talk aesthetics with the designers. It gave me a different view on things.” Cueto went on to spend seven years at Four Seasons properties in Los Angeles, advancing to Director of Rooms.
Now at Four Seasons Resort Palm Beach, on the heels of the most challenging year for the hospitality and travel industry yet poised for one of the most successful years in the resort history, Cueto is ready to once again make his mark.
Cueto holds it as a point of pride that he is a lifer at Four Seasons with no intention of working anywhere else. “I’ve always been proud that I’m a loyalist. I don’t mean to boast, but this is really the best hospitality company to work for.”