Meet Olea Hotel's Ashish Patel, one of North Bay Business Journal's 2019 Forty Under 40
Ashish Patel, 37, owner of Olea Hotel in Glen Ellen in Sonoma Valley, is one of North Bay Business Journal's Forty Under 40 notable young professionals for 2019.
Responsibilities with your company: All aspects of the company including marketing, finance, HR, technology, guest relations, etc.
How do you exemplify the spirit of being a top Forty Under 40 professional?: Not giving up when faced with a challenge. Also, looking at career setbacks as a jumping off point to reinvent yourself.
Years with company: 7.5
Length of time in current position: 7.5 years
Number who report to you: 13
Greatest professional accomplishment: Being able to execute on an idea/vision of what an elevated hospitality experience should be. An experience where service is the highest priority and unique amenities that complete the offering. When you're starting out, no one tells you the roles and responsibilities that go into running a small business. Being able to wear many hats is definitely something to be proud of.
Greatest professional challenge: Putting the pieces back together after the October fires. Along with many homes in the area, our property suffered damaged that forced us to close immediately. Not knowing if we're going to open again, my wife and I were forced to assess the damage and figure out how (if at all) we were going to maneuver out of this to reopen. After countless hours dealing with our insurance agency, fire remediation, new construction of a pool area, and renovation of our existing units, we opened again for business after about 10 months of closure.
Best advice received: Keep it simple.
Single most important event in your professional life in the last 12 months: Re-opening of the Olea Hotel after the October fires.
What steps is your company taking to sustain your organization and morale in the current economy?
Offer value to our guests and to strengthen our existing partnerships. A strong repeat clientele is vital for any dips in the macroeconomic climate and is your best marketing vehicle.
Next professional goal: Start a new project when the time is right.
Education: Bachelor of Science in computer engineering from Santa Clara University
Hometown: San Jose
Community/nonprofit activities: Board member of Sonoma Valley Visitors Bureau Board Member of Sonoma County Tourism; part-time coach for Youth Athletic Leagues
Mentor/admired businessperson: Jeff Bezos
What is your most disliked buzzword?: Millennials
Typical day at the office: Usually on my feet talking to employees and guests.
Best place to work outside of your office: At a local winery
Hobbies: Basketball, playing with my kids (Dylan is 7, Reyna is 5), taking trips, working out at Sonoma Fit
What you wanted to be when you grew up: Professional Basketball Player
No. 1 thing you want to accomplish by the time you turn 40:
Start a new project and/or company
First job: Cashier at Jack-In-The-Box. I was 14. :)
Social media you most use: Instagram
Favorite book: “The Snowball: Warren Buffett and the Business of Life”
Favorite movie: “Dragon: The Bruce Lee Story”
Favorite after-work drink: Manhattan
Last vacation: Indian Springs in Calistoga
What does your mom or dad brag most about you?: Generosity
Favorite app: Lyft