Lee Boo-jin, the eldest daughter of Samsung Electronics chairman Lee Kun-hee who is said to most strongly resemble her father in both looks and personality, was moved to tears by her staff, sources close to Hotel Shilla said.
The younger Lee, who is the president of the hotel, treated the entire hotel staff to lunch on Jan.10, a day after the birthday celebrations for her father were held on the hotel grounds last week.
All 500 of them, including bellboys and housekeepers were treated to a meal cooked by the hotel’s chefs, and in a switch of roles, the higher ranking employees, such as those of manager level and above, served their lower staff.
Lee also became tearful when she thanked the staff for their hard work at the hotel before she bid them goodbye for the next seven to eight months as the hotel will temporarily shut down for a facelift starting that day, the sources said.
Lee Boo-jin, 44, took over the helm of Hotel Shilla in December of 2010, based on the strong performance she showed at the hotel in previous years. One of her major feats as hotel management was winning the contract from Louis Vuitton allowing Shilla Duty Free to open one of its shops in Incheon International Airport; it was the first store the French brand opened in an airport duty free area.
The hotel has now closed most of its operations to undergo major remodeling of its facilities that are more than thirty years old.
Some of the staff were given paid holidays, while others will be taking training courses or working at Parkview, a sister hotel, or Shilla’s Jeju branch until the re-opening on Aug.1, the hotel said.
By Kim Ji-hyun and Kim So-hyun
<관련 한글 기사>
이건희 딸, 이부진의 "통 큰" 리더쉽
이건희 회장의 맏딸 이부진 사장이 1월10일에 서울 신라호텔의 전 직원을 모아 점심을 대접하며 뜻 깊은 고별행사를 가졌던 것으로 알려졌다.
이부진 사장은 그 동안 수고해준 것에 대한 고마움과 함께, 호텔 리모델링을 진행하는 약 7개월 동안 보지 못한다는 아쉬움에 눈물도 보인 것으로 밝혀졌다.
아버지를 가장 많이 닮은 것으로 알려진 이사장은 평소에도 직원을 챙기는 마음이 각별했다고 주변관계자들은 전했다.
오찬은 신라호텔 쉐프들이 직접 요리를 하고 매니저 이상의 고위직원들이 아래 스텝에게 서빙을 해준 "훈훈한" 점심식사였다고 한다.
한편, 신라호텔은 이건희 회장의 생일 다음날인 10일부터 리모델링에 들어가, 8월1일 다시 오픈할 예정이다. 그 사이 직원들은 교육이나 기타 휴가를 활용할 수 있으며, 제주신라호텔이나 파크뷰 호텔 등으로 파견처리 될 예정이라고 호텔 관계자들은 전했다. 휴관의 특성상 전 직원이 유급처리 될 것이라고도 밝혔다.