Banquet Houseperson The Westin Copley Place, Boston
Courtesy of Tommy I.

Name: Tommy I.
Position: Banquet Houseperson
Hotel: The Westin Copley Place, Boston
Dream destination: The Bahamas
Favorite way to focus on wellness: I enjoy staying active; it helps keep my mind sharp. Walking is one of my favorite activities and it helps maintain a healthy lifestyle. Keeping healthy is important to me so that I can hopefully travel to my dream destination.

When one thinks of the Heart of Westin, people like Tommy come to mind. Tommy is the heart of Westin. He’s worked at The Westin Copley Place Hotel in Boston for 40 years since he was first hired as a banquet house attendant in 1984.

During this time at this hotel, he’s been through it all. Including the ups and downs and turning points that make up a life. From losing his mother and feeling the support and empathy of his colleagues, to being awarded employee of the year, Tommy has felt like he hasn’t just found a job at The Westin, but also a sense of belonging to a team and a community.

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“It speaks volumes about the hotel’s culture and values that they prioritize their employees’ well-being and offer the flexibility and empathy needed during challenging moments,” Tommy says.

Tommy is one of the associates being featured in the brand’s new Heart of Westin: Wellness Cards, Move Well Collection. Each one of the 30 cards in the collection features a Westin associate from around the world performing a specific stretch.

Banquet Houseperson The Westin Copley Place, Boston

Marriott associates are consistently encouraged to prioritize their own wellness through the acclaimed company-wide program TakeCare, and this Westin brand-specific initiative is a great example of that empowerment. The Move Well Cards are available to Westin associates during their workdays and throughout their shifts, so that daily movement and wellness is top of mind and encouraged.

Learn more about Tommy’s four-decade love story with The Westin in his own words below.

How was it like to participate in the Move Well Collection?

I felt a bit apprehensive about having my photo taken at first. However, seeing other coworkers participating and understanding the purpose behind the project helped alleviate those initial concerns. It was a lot of fun, and I am excited to be a part of something larger than the hotel, for the whole brand.

In your day-to-day job, how are you encouraged to prioritize your well-being?

My manager goes above and beyond to ensure my well-being. I have been open with her about my health and she checks in on me, making sure I am taking the necessary breaks to stay hydrated and I’m sticking to my diet. She also shares financial information from TakeCare, which encourages me to stay healthy and on track toward my future goals.

Banquet Houseperson The Westin Copley Place, Boston

Courtesy of Tommy I.

What is your favorite part of working at your hotel?

I take great pride in my work, and I find fulfillment in making guests happy. The satisfaction of knowing that my efforts contribute to a positive experience for guests is my favorite part of working at The Westin Copley. Building relationships with guests, especially seeing familiar faces return year after year, speaks volumes about the quality of service I provide. When guests specifically request me for their functions, it’s a testament to my professionalism and dedication and a source of great pride.

How do you feel supported in your role?

My boss not only supports me but also helps me to buffer any criticism and pressure from guests. She continuously assures me that we are in it together. I know she has my back, and she can provide a sense of security and motivation, especially in a role that involves high-pressure situations. With her encouragement and guidance, I confidently navigate challenges and I can focus on delivering excellent service to guests.

Banquet Houseperson The Westin Copley Place, Boston

Courtesy of Tommy I.

What has been one of the highlights of these 40 years at The Westin Copley?

Winning Employee of the Year was a memorable and meaningful experience for me. I really felt I was a part of the team. I know my manager really advocated for me to win the award, but it was nice knowing I was noticed by those outside my department. I didn’t expect the award, but looking back now I remember my manager and the HR team making sure I brought a suit to attend the holiday party and they really insisted on me attending. When they announced the award, I was so surprised.

How would you describe your experience with Westin?

I have a deep sense of pride and loyalty towards Westin. I have stayed with this property for 40 years, which is an impressive accomplishment, especially considering the changes and evolution I have witnessed within the hotel industry over that time. I am proud to be associated with Westin, I am dedicated to this job, but I also believe in the brand’s values and standards. The Westin Copley Place has been more than just a workplace for me—it’s been a significant part of my life journey.

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