Karim Abbar – Director of Food and Beverage, The Art Hotel & Resort
What took you into hospitality and why food and beverage (F&B)?
Since my younger days I was part of the hotel life. My father, may he rest in peace, was a food and beverage director in morocco and I would spend weekends and school holidays with him at the hotel where he worked. I enjoyed my time there getting to experience hotels from a customer’s point of view. Working in F&B is a significant responsibility and what you do directly affects the guest experience. I like the fact of preserving excellent levels of internal and external customer service and emphasising motivation and teamwork within my team.
What made you decide to move to Bahrain and how long have you been here?
I was in Bahrain previously from 2013 to 2016 working for a five-star hotel and resort, it was an amazing and enriching experience. Bahraini people are rightly famed for their hospitality and friendliness, but Bahrain’s expat community is also probably one of the friendliest you’ll find, perhaps because it’s a small island. Also, the mix between tradition and modernity that you can see throughout Bahrain is commendable. After three years away from Bahrain, I decided to come back here with my family. My wife loves Bahrain, she and I still have our routine and friends here. We most definitely feel that we have a home away from home on this beautiful island. Incidentally, my little son, Adam, was born here so, in a way, we’ll always have something that links us to Bahrain.
Who is your business inspiration and why?
There have been a lot of people that inspired me during my career, from whom I learned a lot and who helped me grow in the industry by believing in me and my capabilities. However, I believe that the only person who kept inspiring is the better version of me. I always challenge myself to be better, learn more, ask questions, if needed, and stay connected in order to follow new trends, which is a must in our industry. So, in a way of speaking, my future or better self is my inspiration, as I aspire to be him.