We are fortunate to meet many wonderful interns here at Palazzo San Niccolò Apartments in Florence; one very capable and enthusiastic recent intern was Isabel and we were thrilled to receive this lovely post from her about her experience working in our residence.  She has graciously let us share her post below :


My Year Abroad and Internship at Palazzo San Niccolò

It’s been seven months since I last ate mexican food. Is that an appropriate beginning to a blog? Boh, I don’t know. When Annalisa and Federico asked me to write about my experience at Palazzo San Niccolò I panicked– how do I begin to explain my seven month bilingual internship that took place in the heart of Florence in a short blog? How do I explain why I am so enamoured with a palazzo tucked away in the heart of Florence? Thinking about the last supper I had with my family at my favorite mexican food restaurant led me to think about my decision to study abroad for a year, a decision which ultimately brought me through the gate of Palazzo San Niccolò.

Hi I’m Isabel and my journey to Palazzo San Niccolò began when I decided to attend Gonzaga University.

Three years ago I moved from sunny California to a much less-so sunny Spokane, Washington.  I wanted to study Italian so that I could study abroad in Italy, which had always been a dream of mine. With my goal insight I chose to pursue a major in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Italian

Gonzaga University put me in contact with Palazzo San Niccolò under the agreement I could Intern for academic credit. This internship has impacted my business skills and so much more. Not only did the internship strengthen my proficiency in Italian, but it also gave me a deeper appreciation for customer relations. Some of my tasks at Palazzo San Niccolò included assisting face-to-face guest check-ins, email communications, and collaborating with another intern to write the web content for “Your Place In Florence.” I also created and maintained an Excel database organizing guest information and an inventory workbook for each room. I  promoted and attended hotel events such as Merry and Bright, a Christmas fair, and Real Taste of Tuscany, a foodie sampling of Tuscan delicacies. These tasks and events that I partook in, along with many others, made my year abroad a truly enriching experience.

Thus far,  one of my favorite memories of being abroad is when I stayed at Palazzo San Niccolò as a guest with my grandparents, aunt, uncle, and father over my spring break. When my family told me they were visiting I was afraid they would not be exposed to the true culture of Italy by staying in a traditional hotel, but Palazzo San Niccolò offered them a tranquil piece of culture that I am thankful they got to experience.

Palazzo San Niccolò is a charming oasis tucked away from the chaos of Florence. I fell in love with the simplistic charm of the hotel from the very beginning and only wish to see it’s continued success in the future. The opportunity to work at Palazzo San Niccolò taught me how the hospitality industry operates and, more importantly, how a firm succeeds. From assignments, guests interactions, and by observing how Annalisa, Elena, Isabelle, Federico, and Simone interact with guests, I learned how Customer Service truly defines the success of a company. I will hold this as a remarkable lesson as I go forth in the business world.

Grazie mille, an endless thank you, to all of the staff at Palazzo San Niccolo for making this experience possible and so impactful. Now the time has come for me to return home and go straight to my favorite mexican food that I have missed so much.