This week we chatted with one of our superstar all-rounder, Anthony Perrone. With a constant overflow of positive feedback on Mr. Perrone’s work as a food and beverage attendant and hosting manager, Anthony was the clear candidate to nominate for Octopus Hospitality’s employee of the month.
Name: Anthony Perrone
Role: Food & beverage attendant and recently expanding into hosting manager role.
How long have you worked for Octopus Hospitality?
I started working for Octopus when I came back from Munich, Germany. I started the same time as the onset of the Spring Racing Carnival In 2016 – so a little over two years.
What were you doing In Munich?
For 15 of the last 18 years, I was living and working 20kms south of Munich on Lake Starnberg which is the most exclusive and affluent location in Germany, with the highest earnings per capita. I owned a 7-day/week restaurant and cocktail bar lounge which eventually developed and grew a night club dimension to the business as well, but operating only on weekends. We had over 70 cocktails that we made, live music and renowned djs on weekends, weekly food & drink specials – it was a very busy time in my life.
But I wasn’t always working in hospitality, I was an accountant before that.
Wow that’s quite a different career. What made you switch from accounting to hospitality?
I have a Master’s degree in commerce and I started my accounting career in the mid 1980’s with Deloitte in Auditing as a young under-graduate, from which I then went into Financial & Tax Accounting as Post-graduate, became a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, for which I worked additionally as an examiner for those completing their Professional Year with the relevant Institute and ultimately I finished working as an accountant in the private sector for a large family organisation that was heavily involved in Restaurants, amid many other activities including but not limited to property investments on a large scale in the early 90’s. Eventually I made my way into hospitality. I Left my accounting job and purchased the Montmorency News Agency with my wife at the time. When things didn’t work out between my wife and I, I decided to reinvent myself. By 1999, I was doing a number of jobs all within the realm of consulting and accounting.
Eventually I switched gears and decided to go to Germany to look at a new business idea that I wanted to bring back to Australia – the latest in artisan Italian ice cream. There was an Italian man from Verona who owned an Ice Cream making business in Garmisch-Partenkirchen, in the south of Germany, and I wanted to bring that business to Australia. I spent a year with him learning how to make Italian ice cream, but in the end the business venture didn’t work out.
Did you notice a difference between German, or more broadly European, Hospitality from Australian?
German Hospitality is similar to a broader European approach. They have similar features with that classic, old and long, well established standards and methods of hospitality work.
Australia, I find is very young; it is a rapidly growing industry with a diverse group of people who are sourcing ideas from all over the world. Australia is very much a melting pot of people who bring in different influences and cultural takes on food and hospitality services. There is so much more diversity here that adds lots of colour and excitement to the industry.
So, Australian Hospitality in three words is diverse, growing, and young?
What do you enjoy about your role at Octopus?
I enjoy any task that is given to me – wait staff, bar staff supervisor, coordinating a function or event as I’ve done on many occasions for various Octopus clients. I certainly enjoy the diversity and travel of my job and I’m happy to do whatever the job requires. I really enjoy and value highly making the clients happy and totally satisfied and seeing a smile on their face with the level of service that I provide. The flexibility of the job is great too!
What do you like to do in your spare time? Do you have any hobbies?
I am a pretty sporty person. I enjoy lots of activities like cycling, skiing and swimming. I like to keep an active lifestyle. Ideally, I start the day with exercise and a big breakfast.
Aside from staying active, I love to spend time with my family. Quality time with my family is so important to me, it’s what I missed the most when I was in Munich. At the end of the day, health and family are the two most salient and significant things In my life.