Is hospitality in your blood? Do you want to dedicate your life to creating experiences that make people happy?
Does the idea of living on a remote island in the Salish Sea, surrounded by farms and coastal beauty inspire you?
Do you want to work with a group of like-minded people and continue your own personal and professional development?
Do you want to be a part of living history and help revitalize an iconic landmark that has been serving guests for over 100 years?
Are you tired of working in restaurants and hotels where the chef and general manager barely know your name and could care less where your career takes you?
If all of the above describes you, then please continue reading...
Our Model- the Orcas Hotel is a business model unlike any you have likely experienced. We pride ourselves in having a very small- tight knit team that takes part in all aspects of the operation. From turning rooms and creating fresh floral arrangements, to participating in menu development and cleaning the grease trap, we all participate in every aspect of the operation. Each and every member of our team, including the chef and owners wash dishes, clean bathrooms, tend to the grounds and assist with every detail of the operation. Because we work together so closely, we also take great interest and personal responsibility in the success of each member of our team, both here on Orcas and throughout their career.
Education and Professional Development- we strongly encourage all of our team members to actively pursue their goals and to develop the skills that will best serve them in the future. We provide a private library with hundreds of cook books, hospitality management books and resources on foraging and sustainability. We encourage our team to pursue stages, classes and other forms of continuing education. Once you are ready, we are happy to arrange stages at Michelin rated restaurants and Relais Chateaux resorts using our industry network. As part of your education we will create a personalized development program to help you focus and improve. An example of a grid for an aspiring chef can be found here:
Extra Curricular Activities- We frequently go on group educational trips. These might include: local foraging, visiting a local distillery or winery, seeing our coffee roaster, oyster farm and tasting, day sailing and fishing, team events and dinners at the Donohue House or beach.
Housing- One of the biggest obstacles for people who want to work on the island is housing. Just as with vacation destinations around the world, many of the long-term rentals on the island have been converted to vacation rentals, making it almost impossible for hospitality workers to find reasonably priced housing. We understand that our team is the heart and soul of our operation and that's why we recently purchased The Donohue Home, a National Historic Landmark that was recently operated as The Golden Tree Hostel. This beautiful compound has the historic barn and farmhouse along with a tiny cedar home, geodesic dome tent and teepee. The farmstead was once the center of a 180 acre apple orchard and their are still a dozen heirloom apple trees that represent one of each of the original varietals. The Donohue's would just step out their back door and could see what was blooming and fruiting before venturing into the fields. Today the farmstead is our own home as well as a home for our team. We have five individual units that share a common bath-house, hot tub, sauna, outdoor kitchen and fire-pit. It's a creative space for our team to relax and be inspired. The property is conveniently located just a few minutes walk from North Beach and the town of East Sound. It is a short 15 minute drive to the hotel. Each member of the community pays a reasonable monthly rent and contributes to the upkeep of the grounds and facilities.
Compensation and Benefits- Our goal is to provide a sustainable employment opportunity so that each team member can comfortably live and work. The base hourly rate and housing assistance allow most individuals to pay for essential living costs and enjoy a good quality of life on the island. Most positions at The Orcas Hotel are designed for people looking for an educational adventure and a stepping stone for career advancement. We believe that the 18 month experience working at the hotel will provide a level of education that surpasses most culinary and hospitality schools without needing to incur student debt. We offer a daily family meal for each employee as well as family discounts on rooms and dining. We are currently unable to provide insurance, but hope to be able to offer it in the future.
Application Process- We are happy to accept applications for positions including: cooks, stewards, housekeeping, baristas, servers and bartenders. We are only interested in individuals who have a passion for hospitality and a drive to become chefs or hospitality managers. Please keep in mind that due to the nature of our business and small team that ALL positions will participate in ALL departments even if they have a specific base position. Our current team also plays an active role in interviewing and reviewing all candidates. The first step in the application process is to fill out the online application. Once we review the application and determine that you are a good fit we will schedule a phone or FaceTime interview. If a candidate is successful in the phone interview they will be invited to the island to do a stage and meet our team. (meals and accommodations will be provided during this stage).
The Fine Print- We ask that each candidate agree to an 18 month commitment. This timeline enables each team member to learn and contribute in a meaningful way. The Orcas Hotel and Donohue House are quite literally our family home; as such we ask that each of our team members demonstrate exemplary behavior both at work and as they interact with the Orcas community. Each successful candidate will be asked to authorize a background check. There is a strict zero tolerance policy for any illegal behavior.