Le Meridien Ra Beach Hotel and Spa is a 5-star luxury beach hotel in El Vendrell in the country of Spain and luck was on my side for I get to join the company summit within the month of joining. It was an all expense paid trip for 300 employees and was planned in a way that everyone gets more personal time than sitting down on a conference room with a power point presentation. Every day there is an activity and every dinner had a theme.
The 5-star Location
Thursday, we arrived in Spain and a bus took us to the resort which is about 40 minutes from the airport. Everything was prepared so when we arrived at the resort, we only had to pick up our room keys, drop our bags, freshen up a bit and eat dinner. I had a bit of a problem, when I wanted to open my suitcase because my code did not work. I know the combination has never been changed but it just did not want to open up after several attempts. I called the hotel front desk personnel to have somebody force open the bag and right after i placed the phone down, I unknowingly moved the first number and when I pushed one last time, it opened. Talk about irony. I had to tell the guy by the door that it was fixed. Well, gears break and probably that’s what happened.
A summit is not complete without a conference
Friday, we had a conference hosted by the CEO, he mainly talked about how the company is performing, market trends, important events and gave out awards to the different departments and people. In between the conference was of course fika, where we got to socialize with our colleagues over coffee and pastries.
Team building by the beach
Saturday, we had our team building activity by the beach, no cheating allowed or we all die. Very simple rule. This was the shortest day of the summit, it gave us the time to sneak out and head over to the capital, Barcelona!
Warm weather is over
Sunday, it was time to leave the warmth of Spain in exchange for cold Sweden. We left early for the airport because it was that time where the Catalans will vote to become an independent country. From check-in to pass security control took us an hour. I thought it was because of the protests but then our colleague who was from Barcelona said it was normal. So, a tip? In Barcelona, be an early bird in the airport. After the security control, there was no information on which gate our flight will leave and it was also not printed in the boarding pass. We were lining up like the rest of the people and I noticed it was towards passport control. It felt wrong, I asked the security personnel and showed her my boarding pass, she told me which gate and it was a floor down. I was lucky, the other guy was not. He went through passport control and there was no way back unless you talk to the police. Good thing our Spanish friend and another Swede were there, they rescued the other guy.
What I did
- Socialized – I shared a room with someone I only met the first time and she is really friendly so the bed sharing worked very well.
- Socialized – I shared tables with different people every meal and I met colleagues from different races.
- Socialized – I went hiking with 4 older guys I met during lunch, we got lost but found our way back to the resort.
- Socialized – I went on a side trip to Barcelona with another group of guys and discovered just how beautiful the capital is.
I am so social now, I cannot wait for next year’s summit! 😀