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  • Meet Troy Longwith, Hospitality Pro

    The Heathman Hotel’s Troy Longwith worked his way up the ladder to success.

     
    POSTED April 3, 2017
     

Fresh out of college in the early 1990s, Troy Longwith worked at a large hotel in nearly every capacity: housekeeping, front desk, valet, maintenance and security night manager. But the job that intrigued him most was one he had never heard of.

“In school, they don’t really tell you much about the sales and marketing department,” says Longwith, who graduated from Washington State University with a business degree from its hotel and restaurant program. “I wondered, ‘Who are all these people in suits who are going to lunch?’”

After getting a start in the hospitality business, Longwith left the industry for three years and worked in pharmaceutical sales to gain marketing experience. Following that brief detour from hotels, he joined the team at Four Seasons Hotel in downtown Seattle (now The Fairmont Olympic Hotel), where he worked his way up the chain of command to director of sales. In September 2012, he was appointed general manager at The Heathman Hotel in Kirkland, Washington.

Longwith loves the diverse responsibilities his job involves and welcomes the unpredictability a day brings. “You’re always on call, 24/7,” he says. “If you make it through the night without an accidental fire alarm or a guest issue, it’s a good day!” 

Longwith also enjoys being a part of the larger Kirkland community, and he sits as the vice president and member of the boards of directors and executive boards of both the Kirkland Chamber of Commerce and the Kirkland Downtown Association. 

A short walk from the eastern shore of Lake Washington, The Heathman Hotel is a 91-room luxury hotel with seven meeting spaces and a renowned farm-to-table restauran t. It draws guests from all walks of life, including local empty nesters—who may book a room over the holidays so that their visiting children can have their parents’ condo all to themselves—and musicians in town for a concert. Longwith says that the hotel’s close proximity to Microsoft’s and Google’s offices makes it the choice for traveling businesspeople and technology workers.

“We’ve been called ‘Kirkland’s living room,’” says Longwith. “We’re a hotel that gets different types of business all year round.” 

Microsoft recently produced Solutions5, the seventh annual collaborative conference bringing together five premier food service associations: Association of Correctional Food Service Affiliation, Association for Healthcare Foodservice, Foodservice Consultants Society International, National Association of College Auxiliary Services and the Society for Hospitality & Foodservice Management.

 

Last year, Sister Cities International celebrated its 60th anniversary. The organization was founded as a result of President Dwight D. Eisenhower’s People-to-People program. Eisenhower believed that cultural exchanges, youth programs, sharing arts and culture, and exchanging business ideas and research and development projects could foster bonds between people of different communities. Here in the Northwest, each of our major cities has a number of sister cities. Seattle, for example, has 21, while Portland, Oregon, has nine (and one friendship city). 

 

Here’s the one question you might want to avoid asking Robbie Harrell when you see one of his sculptures at an event: “Is that real ice?” The CEO of Minnesota Ice Sculptures says his com - pany’s sculptures are so clear and precisely carved that they prompt that question at every event they’re displayed. “Once people realize it really, truly is carved from ice, they’re excited about it,” he says. “There are always lots of selfies with the ice sculpture.”