Hotel manager

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Hotel manager in the Old Town of Stockholm in 1865

A hotel manager, hotelier, or lodging manager is a person who manages the operation of a hotel, motel, resort, or other lodging-related establishment. Management of a hotel operation includes, but is not limited to management of hotel staff, business management, upkeep and sanitary standards of hotel facilities, guest satisfaction and customer service, marketing management, sales management, revenue management, financial accounting, purchasing, and other functions. The title "hotel manager" or "hotelier" often refers to the hotel's General Manager who serves as a hotel's head executive, though their duties and responsibilities vary depending on the hotel's size, purpose, and expectations from ownership. The hotel's General Manager is often supported by subordinate department managers that are responsible for individual departments and key functions of the hotel operation.

Hotel management structure

The size and complexity of a hotel management organizational structure varies significantly depending on the size, features, and function of the hotel or resort. A variety of certifications[1] are available from the American Hotel & Lodging Educational Institute, a division of the American Hotel & Lodging Association. A small hotel operation normally may consist of a small core management team consisting of a Hotel Manager and a few key department supervisors who directly handle day-to-day operations. On the other hand, a large full-service hotel or resort often operates similar to a large corporation with an executive board headed by the General Manager and consisting of key directors serving as heads of individual hotel departments. Each department at a large hotel or resort may normally consist of subordinate line-level managers and supervisors who handle day-to-day operations.

Example of Large/Full Service Hotel or Resort

A typical organizational chart for a large resort hotel operation may often resemble the following:

General Manager reports to a Regional Vice President and/or Ownership/Investors

Additional Management Positions may exist for additional facilities such as hotel-owned golf courses, casinos, or spas.

Example for Small/Limited service hotel

A typical organizational chart for a small low-rise hotel operation may resemble the following:

Hotel Manager reports to Regional Director and/or Ownership/Investors

  • General Manager
    • Guest Service Manager (front office)
    • Housekeeping Manager
    • Maintenance Supervisor
    • Sales & Marketing Manager
    • Food & Beverage Manager

Administrative functions for a small-scale hotel such as Accounting, Payroll, and Human Resources may normally be handled by a centralized corporate office or solely by the Hotel Manager. Additional auxiliary functions such as security may be handled by third-party vendor services contracted by the hotel on an as-needed basis.

Typical qualifications

The background and training required varies by the type of management position, size of operation, and duties involved. Industry experience has proven to be a basic qualification for nearly any management occupation within the lodging industry. A BS degree in Hospitality Management or an equivalent Business degree is often strongly preferred by most employers in the industry but not always required.

A higher level graduate degree may be desired for a General Manager type position, but is often not required with sufficient management experience and industry tenure. A graduate degree may however be required for a higher level corporate executive position or above such as a Regional Vice President who oversees multiple hotel properties and General Managers.

Working conditions

Hotel managers are generally exposed to long shifts that include late hours, weekends, and holidays due to the 24 hour operation of a hotel. The common workplace environment in hotels is fast-paced, with high levels of interaction with guests, employees, investors, and other managers.

Upper management consisting of senior managers, department heads, and General Managers may sometimes enjoy a more desirable work schedule consisting of a more traditional business day with occasional weekends and holidays off.

Depending on the size of the hotel, a typical hotel manager's day may include assisting with operational duties, managing employee performance, handling dissatisfied guests, managing work schedules, purchasing supplies, interviewing potential job candidates, conducting physical walks and inspections of the hotel facilities and public areas, and additional duties. These duties may vary each day depending on the needs of the property. The manager's responsibility also includes knowing about all current local events as well as the events being held on the hotel property. Managers are often required to attend regular department meetings, management meetings, training seminars for professional development, and additional functions. A hotel/casino property may require additional duties regarding special events being held on property for casino complimentary guests.

Salary expectations

The median annual wage in 2011 of the 50,400 lodging managers in the United States was $46,810. [3]


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 "Hospitality Career Path : Hospitality Career Path Certifications" (PDF). Retrieved 2015-09-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  2. "Guest Services Manager Salary". Retrieved 2015-09-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  3. "Lodging Managers : Occupational Outlook Handbook: : U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics". 2014-01-08. Retrieved 2015-09-07.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>