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Hotel Gran Bilbao

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Passion • Hope • Motivation • Responsibility • Communication • Perseverance • Empathy

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Welcome to the history of Hotel Gran Bilbao

If there’s one thing that defines Hotel Gran Bilbao it is resilience. The human capacity to overcome adversity. We have no doubt you, dear reader, know what we mean.

We did not get off to a good start. We don’t want to inspire pity with our words. On the contrary. Today we are where we are thanks to the perseverance of the people who makes up the Hotel Gran Bilbao. And it is all thanks to a human value etched deeply into each and every one of our hearts: confidence.

We want to tell you our story. The story that has defined us through our actions since the hotel’s creation. No, we did not get off to a great start, but we want to be honest, as we are known to be.

Because we can now say that we have done a great job over the years. We know there’s still a long road ahead of us and we strive to improve day by day in order to create memorable experiences for our guests: people like you, like all of you. Because if there is one thing in which we firmly believe at Hotel Gran Bilbao it is that you lie at the centre of our actions.

The beginning

Hotel Gran Bilbao starts out as a family business. The family’s personal circumstances at the time led to the creation of this project called Hotel Gran Bilbao.

For quite some time, the Segura family had owned businesses all over Spain, especially in the northern regions, almost always linked to the hotel industry.

They spent some time trying to decide on the best city in which to create a new hotel, following the success of Hotel Ciudad de Burgos, and settled for our city: Bilbao.

Bilbao was chosen for three reasons. The first was because of the city’s growth potential and its surroundings. The second reason was its proximity to Burgos. The third, more emotional than pragmatic, is the joy of embarking on a new project at home, which the family always felt to be, and is, Bilbao.

And if there is one thing that the hotel, the Segura family and the people of Bilbao all have in common, that is passion. The unconditional will to do things right and satisfy others.

Hotel Gran Bilbao was born in hard times, and we had to learn many lessons the hard way

Things weren’t easy at first. 2009 was scourged by the financial crisis that was wreaking havoc throughout the country. To say the opposite would be to ignore a period that gave us a chance to flex and boost our resilience. We learnt lessons the hard way and these lessons helped us grow.

After some years, during which the main object of speculation was what course and direction the Hotel Gran Bilbao would take, and thanks to the extraordinary efforts of all the people who were doing their best to get this dream going, we started to make decisions.

In fact, we made many. Doubtlessly rushed by the circumstances or the sum of circumstances we were living. Unpleasant circumstances we had to slowly improve with endless patience.

Once the circumstances and the actions and stamina of the entire team led to better times, and after realising how important people were within the company, we made one of our most important decisions: to always focus on people in order to keep improving.

That was between 2014 and 2015. A decision that would completely turn our story around. Hotel Gran Bilbao’s story. The decision to focus on PEOPLE was a watershed moment for the hotel.

Putting people at the centre of Hotel Gran Bilbao

Believe us, it wasn’t easy. If we accept the notion that humans are more emotional than rational, take a moment to consider the emotions and feelings of each and every person that then made up the hotel.

Despite facing serious financial troubles that made us spend long periods of time without seeing a dime, we persevered because we believed in the project, dedicating large swathes of not only our working hours but also our personal lives. Setting aside prejudice, trusting, planning and executing. Taking the necessary steps to turn things around.

And then… our greatest satisfaction. Understanding that taking care of our

workers, our human team, was the best way to take care of our guests. And we won! We defeated fear, uncertainty, weariness and our faltering breaths… the restlessness of our lowest points.

We took all that and turned it into hope, growth, enthusiasm… because, remember, that is where the secret lies. Not only in dreams, but in actions. Woody Allen once said that we mustn’t say things, but do them, because by doing them, they say themselves.

This is a story of conflict, of stamina, of repeated falls and subsequent rises. A story like so many others that have happened, still happen and will continue to happen. But it is our story, that of Hotel Gran Bilbao, and you deserve to know it for one simple reason: because you, dear reader, and all of you readers, are a part of it. THANK YOU.

So, what happened next? Let’s tell you some more

Stories written by and for our guests

Our story has always been the sum of the stories people have lived in Hotel Gran Bilbao. The sum of the people who make up the hotel and the stories that live in its walls and echo down its halls.

We have managed to make our guests feel at home, for don’t we travel to feel just as well as we do at home, if not better? At Hotel Gran Bilbao we long ago understood the needs of our guests as if they were our own. We put ourselves in their shoes using the most appreciated form of empathy: the one that is felt through actions.

We managed to make our guests feel that we weren’t just another hotel… that we aren’t just another hotel. We are aware of the day-to-day work that lies behind every action we take to make sure our guests live a memorable experience. That’s right, our guests are always centremost in our mind when it comes to coming up with actions that involve living unique experiences and make our guests remember us fondly when they go home. Guests are at the core of our thoughts to guarantee they live a sensory, exciting and human experience at Hotel Gran Bilbao.

We understand a guest’s stay to be like the penning of a new story that involves his or her wellbeing before, during and after staying with us:

We understand that the softness of the bedsheets is synonymous with a good night’s rest.

That the warmth (and colour) of the light will increase the comfort of the time spent in their room.

That towels should caress the skin, not abrade it.

That breakfasts are the most important meal if you want to enjoy a great day filled with success.

That The Brunch at Hotel Gran Bilbao has become an instant classic in and around Bilbao.

That the smiles of our team are responsible for ensuring guests have a wonderful time from the moment they step into the hotel… until as far as they remember us.

Our team: beautiful, professional people

Many are those who know about our philosophy centred around people at Hotel Gran Bilbao, but few are aware of the things our team does to translate these ideas into actions.

It is no coincidence that our workers / brothers in arms are almost always around. Behind their joy and professionalism lies a strategy geared toward keeping them happy and taken care of. To make sure both their professional and personal needs are always seen to.

Yes, that’s right. It’s about more than just a salary and the safety that comes with a stable job. It’s about their goals, the opportunities to keep on learning and growing as professionals and as people, the friendly working atmosphere, all of which is designed to ensure these people continue to improve in all aspects of their lives.

This might sound philosophical or poetic but let us tell you some of the things we have done for them. That’s right, for our team. The protagonists of our story.

Some examples of actions for people by the people of Hotel Gran Bilbao

The first team video we made at Hotel Gran Bilbao was the Christmas Dance, to wish everyone a Happy Christmas in 2015. And many of you will think “WOW, that’s lovely!” when you watch it, but we must confess it is much more than a video.

It is the result of two months of rehearsals, of going to the gym to learn the choreography and of working on something truly wonderful called laughter therapy (which we dearly encourage you all to try at least once in your life).

Two months of working out, of dividing the hotel into two work shifts in order to practise twice a week during that time… Can you imagine!

Our team has two coaches exclusively for them. One to train the teams and another to coach the workers on an individual level. That’s right, they get one too if they need it or the hotel management believes they would benefit from it.

Remember, our main focus is always our guests, but first come our internal guests, the people who help make our brand, Hotel Gran Bilbao, what it is today.

On top of that, our staff also gets a massage session every few months. We believe health is one of the main axes of internal and external happiness.

The hotel gym is not exclusively for our guests. It is also open to our wonderful team, so they can take advantage of it.

At Hotel Gran Bilbao we know we cannot promote healthy eating – our restaurant’s healthy gastronomic products for our guests – if we do not implement healthy eating awareness from within.

Knowing that we are more emotional than rational, we draw from the premise that monotony wears human beings out. That is why at Hotel Gran Bilbao we change the entire team’s uniform twice a year.

The goal is to boost self-esteem and self-respect. And believe us, it works.

Hotel Gran Bilbao Branding. In this hotel, we believe that for a brand to be harmonious, all of its human potential must have an innate sense of the corporate image and the details that compose it. That is why we have slippers, mugs, handkerchiefs, etc., all bearing the hotel’s brand. And that makes us smile even more, when we see the surprised looks on the faces of our guests. We love it!

What part of any job could be better than being allowed to have the autonomy to work on and lead projects? Well, at Hotel Gran Bilbao that is one of our premises: to not limit the people who every day give us their professionalism, their humanity and put their heart and soul into what they do for the hotel’s guests and for their colleagues.

But also, our focus on people goes beyond what they can do for the hotel. We have learnt to prioritise flexibility by letting our workers spend more time with their families. It is easy to understand that when someone is happy in their personal life, they will come to work willing to help improve the lives of those outside of their homes.

We are a source of happiness

At least that is what we aim to be for our guests. But we have been aware for many years that we cannot make our guests happy if we do not make our human team, the people who breathe life and spirit into our hotel, a part of this happiness.

Welcome to Hotel Gran Bilbao. We want to make your dreams come true so that we can write your own story… together.

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Greatness lies in effort, not in results

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You are what you dream; dream big

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The hand that gives is above the hand that receives

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My best tool is a good working environment

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Do things as if you are doing them for yourself

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The possibility of making a dream come true is what makes life interesting

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Bledar

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