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A day in the life of a Hotel Service Engineer

Ciao everyone, my name is Tony and I am the Hotel Service Engineer onboard this ship. On some cruise lines this position is also called Hotel Maintenance Engineer or Hotel Maintenance Manager.

As you can imagine, keeping the ship looking it's best all the time for our guests is a lot of work but this is the job of the Hotel Department. the largest areas onboard a cruise ship.

In order to do so, I have a team of skilled maintenance personnel, such as carpenters, plumbers, electricians and upholsterers in my team. The carpenters onboard do not only deal with wood work, but often have to lay tiles, remove and lay new carpet and help the plumbers to get to the pipes in the ceiling in removing the ceiling panels.

My responsibility spans from decorative and refurbishing works as well as technical tasks in the Hotel as well as in the Crew Areas.

A day in the life of a Hotel Service Engineer

We have a system onboard where all maintenance issues are reported to the Reception Desk and to the Crew Pursers office. Every morning I have to check the maintenance program and extract and print the requests that I need to take care of that day. Everyone in my team gets their assignments given to them first thing in the morning, based on priority. The majority of the carpenters will continue with their regular maintenance of the teak wood handrails onboard the ship as this is an ongoing job. However I need 2 of them tonight to fix some tiles in the galley which are broken. Since the galley is in use all day, we can only do these types of jobs at night, so I need to speak with the Hotel Manager and the Executive Chef to arrange this.

We have also had a few reports about light bulbs needing to be changed in passenger and crew cabins. So I will need to send one electrician off to take care of this.and the other two can carry out the regular round of checking and replacing light bulbs in all the public areas.

Oh, my beeper just went off, let's see what's happened now! We have had a report about a blocked toilet in a passenger area so we need to act quickly. The source of the blockage needs to be found quickly and the pipes cleared. If not, the toilet system of the entire section could be affected. I will need to ask the Carpenters to come along to open the ceiling panels, so that the plumber can get to the pipes. Come along and I will show you what we do next.

Luckily we could fix the problem within 3 hours and we can start the vacuum system of the toilets in that section again. You see, time is of the essence here, when dealing with these kinds of troubles.

At least once a day I do my general rounds in all the public areas, making sure we haven't missed anything. I need to make sure that all our tiles, mosaics and decorative wall panes are in order. When I encounter places where repairs or refurbishments are necessary they go into my list of items to do, so I can schedule them out to the team accordingly.

Some repairs are of a bigger nature, and by working closely with the Engine Department, we can decide if something needs to be done when the ship goes in Dry Dock. Mainly these are jobs that require the special expertise of shore side contractors, or if the impact of the repair will disturb the guests in such a way that they will not have a pleasant vacation experience.

If you like, you can come along and watch me do my walk-through to check that all the jobs have been done for today

Tony Rosario, Italy