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Interview with Romina Cambiasso of Las Balsas

Romina CambiassoRomina Cambiasso is General Manager of Las Balsas in Patagonia, Argentina. Born in Buenos Aires, she majored in Tourism and has extensive experience in the industry, including posts at Park Hyatt Buenos Aires, The Aryaduta Jakarta  and Iguazu Grand Hotel Resort & Casino, among others, prior to moving to Las Balsas.

What is it that  you do exactly?

I manage a Relais & Chateaux in Patagonia. It ´s an incredible property of only 15 rooms by the lake in the middle of a forest, surrounded by mountains. I ´ve been working here for 8 years. Since last year I’ve been living between Villa La Angostura and Buenos Aires. In BA we have our sales & marketing office.

Normally when I’m at the hotel I wake up not very early in the morning and the first thing I do is call my assistant to find out if there is anything urgent to take care of. After that phone call, I have “mate” with my husband, who happens to be the executive chef, and then go straight to my office where I drink my first decaf of the day with the papers. Then it depends on the needs but as being in charge of everything in a small hotel I do always have meetings to attend, lunches with guests, discuss the day’s work  with staff and late in the evenings I assist to my regular political meeting. I’m at the board of a political party in my small town. When I’m in Buenos Aires I go to the office very early in the morning and do presentations to potential clients.

What do you enjoy most about what you do?

To be honest I enjoy many things. But to name two I would say: to make my guests’ stay as special and unforgettable as I know it is and to train young people to be ready for their future as potential leaders. Most of all to let them understand what is important in serving other people. Of course it is very exhausting because it takes much more time and energy but the result is amazing and when people tell me what great team I have I know is because of that.

What would you say are the 3 best places you’ve ever stayed?

Fernando de Noronha –  a small island in Northeast Brazil. The sunsets and deep blue sea are so romantic… I love scuba diving and this is one of the best places ever!!! And it was part of my honeymoon…

Paris –  I just simply love it… everything there is great… classy and
beautiful. Whenever I can I go there.

Perito Moreno Glacier –  an enchanting place. It is where I met my husband. Incredibly energetic…

What’s been your most memorable dining experience to date?

That’s a tough question… Pablo, my husband is an incredible chef, so creative; and we enjoy eating very much… his food is my favourite. But I would say in 2003 on our honeymoon we went to a small restaurant that belongs to a famous photographer in Pipa (Brazil) called Beijupira. We were alone and we took the tasting menu. Everything was delicious and the ambiance was so romantic with candles and everything. It was the warmest night. When we took our credit card to pay, the waiter who was really kind told us that they did not accept credit cards… we started laughing because we thought we did not have enough cash to pay the bill. Fortunately, everything was solved but we offered to drive our waiter back to his house because our cash was not enough for the tip!!!!!!!

Have you rubbed shoulders with the rich and famous, either through your work or your travels?

We welcome a lot of rich and famous guests  because the hotel is very exclusive and private due to its location. Queen Beatrice of Holland, Princess Maxima and Prince William of Holland, Sir John Major, Jaques Laffitte, to name a few. They choose to come here because they feel safe and comfortable. It is like being at home… and last year in our International Congress in Monaco, we were with Princess Stephanie and Prince Albert.  

What currently ranks highest on your travel wishlist?

I would say Israel & Egypt. The first one for a religious matter and the second one is because of its culture. South Africa for the safaris and the south of Italy because my family comes from there.      

Thanks, Romina.

Paul Johnson

Paul Johnson is Editor of A Luxury Travel Blog and has worked in the travel industry for more than 30 years. He is Winner of the Innovations in Travel ‘Best Travel Influencer’ Award from WIRED magazine. In addition to other awards, the blog has also been voted “one of the world’s best travel blogs” and “best for luxury” by The Daily Telegraph.

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