Industry Update
Press Release 6 January 2021

West Virginia Community Focused Hotel Chosen as Location for Saira Hospitality’s First Permanent Hospitality School

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Saira Hospitality

Both set to launch in spring 2021, trailblazing NGO Saira Hospitality announce first permanent hospitality school in collaboration with The Monastery Boutique Hotel in Wheeling, West Virginia. Together, Saira and The Monastery will work to create enhanced learning and development opportunities for those in the local community who are unemployed or underemployed, ultimately providing jobs to successful graduates within the luxury hotel & it's community spaces. With the help of Saira, The Monastery will be able to achieve its aim of creating a unique offering which is unfailingly authentic to the destination, where guests, staff and community members alike are invited in to explore and expand their horizons.

The launch of a permanent school is a huge milestone for the 501c3 non-profit which aims to educate hospitality brands in how to give before they take, create stronger bonds with locals and disrupt the industry's traditional recruitment processes which tend to overlook locals in favour of international applicants or poaching from competitors. This milestone follows 4 years of curating successful bespoke pop-up hospitality schools in collaboration with brands such as Bunkhouse, Four Seasons, Habitas, Rosewood and Virgin Limited. To date 250 carefully selected students have graduated from Saira Hospitality's transformational, free-of-charge, programs and are now pursuing career opportunities which would have previously been unavaila ble to them. Saira's hotel partners have seen an impressive 100% ROI and benefit from an expertly trained, passionate and engaged workforce of locals with a deep understanding of local customs, activities and geography.

The permanent school, which will be based in Wheeling's incredible architectural and historical gem, The Scottish Rite, will offer a 10-week program covering topics from service qualities and loyalty programs, to wellness and emotional intelligence. The varied curriculum focuses on improving communication and soft skills through experiential learning lead by specially trained lecturers and industry experts. In the first year three programs for up to 36 students each will be offered with a look to increase this number from year two onwards. The permanent school will also benefit from Saira's long-term partnership with Cornell University's online learning platform, eCornell, which enables them to offer students the opportunity to receive recog nition from the prestigious university, further enhancing the underprivileged students' employability.

"The launch of a permanent school allows us to expand on the ripple effect we see from our pop-ups by continuing to truly benefit the community over time, take on more students and provide enhanced support for past graduates to progress their careers" said Harsha L'Acqua, CEO & founder of Saira Hospitality. She continued, "I couldn't be more excited to continue our journey challenging the status quo of the industry, we have plans for the school to be self-sustainable in the near future, creating a new model for free-of-charge, high-quality hospitality education for communities globally. Partnering with Roxby Development on our first permanent school feels like a perfect fit for Saira Hospitality. Our partner could not be more passionate about revitalizing Wheeling and West Virginia as a whole, bringing a taste of luxury and lifestyle hospitality to th e community and inviting them in."

West Virginia is perfectly positioned to attract both students and guests looking to drive to their next adventure whether that be for education or exploration. The original Wheeling Monastery is currently being transformed into the hotel space with it's 18 keys, restaurant, bar and multiple indoor & outdoor event spaces which will be utilised for an extensive community program. Highlighting the monastery's architectural beauty and original features the interiors create an atmospheric yet welcoming cosiness reflective of a grand home. Uniting the grounds historic charm and it's trailblazing community-first concept means the hotel is perfectly positioned to cater to guests seeking more purposeful yet still luxurious travel experiences in 2021 and beyond. Speaking of their partnership Founder of Roxby Development & The Monastery Jeffrey Morris said "I highly admire the work the Saira Hospitality team do to drive change in the industry and knew they were the missing link to really bring The Monastery and our vision for a transformative hospitality experience which brings out-of-town guests and the community together. The Wheeling community is already excited about what's to come, they are open-minded, welcoming and filled with the hospitality gene - we can't wait to launch our first program with Saira Hospitality and look forward to welcoming our first guests to this unique hotel and it's community spaces in Spring 2021."

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