We Are Terranea Proud
Taking care of people has been a hallmark of L.A.’s oceanfront resort for a decade— for both its valued guests and trusted associates.
- Written byDarren Elms
You need only spend a few hours at Terranea to share a memorable moment with one or more of the resort’s familiar faces. Perhaps it begins at your arrival when the valet opens your vehicle door and welcomes you with a sincere smile. After you are served a favorite cocktail by Jillian at the Lobby Bar, you exchange energy with Angela in the glow of the fire pits as she makes her way down to the bluff to lead Full Moon Yoga.
As Chef Jin heads to catalina kitchen with his freshly harvested ingredients, he recognizes you from your last visit and invites you to try his new seasonal menu on the fly. You indulge graciously and even make time to catch Kevin croon and strum guitar back in the lobby.
Terranea is your second family—a place to connect with like minds who share your love of celebration, epicurean delights, wellness, community and daily discovery. While the breathtaking vistas and award-winning amenities and service continue to delight guests year after year, the soul of Terranea shines most brilliantly in its people.
Celebrating a decade in 2019, the resort introduces an initiative to honor an employee culture that serves authentic hospitality from the heart: Terranea Proud. At its core Terranea seeks to build a strong and diverse culture—one where recruitment policies, a diverse workforce, in-house training programs and an inclusive environment reflect a workplace of which all associates can be proud.
“And knowing you can be with a company for so many years and they give you that opportunity to grow, it motivates you to do even better and come to work every day with a smile.”
“As a champion of opportunities and protection for women, minorities and all individuals for my entire career, I am very proud of what my friends and fellow associates have accomplished—for themselves, for their families and for their futures,” shares Terranea president Terri A. Haack.
Terranea Proud celebrates ongoing efforts to provide a work environment where associates feel empowered to go above and beyond and ultimately create their own dream career path. “Since we opened our doors in 2009, we have worked diligently to take care of our guests and our associates,” says chief strategy officer and executive vice president Agnelo Fernandes. “Our job has always been to provide employees with resources, tools, training and support to make sure they continue to progress in their careers.”
Of Terranea’s 1,250 current employees, 200 have been with the coastal property since the beginning. During the first 10 years of operation, the resort has offered more than 1,000 promotion and transfer opportunities as associates grow into new roles, take on different responsibilities and continue building their careers.
“The fact that your manager tells you they see something in you, and they say, ‘You’re gonna get promoted,’ is really exciting,” shares associate Jose Marquez, who transitioned from food server to manager. “And knowing you can be with a company for so many years and they give you that opportunity to grow, it motivates you to do even better and come to work every day with a smile.”
While Terranea rewards passionate and dedicated service, it also encourages a work-life balance for associates. “It all starts with compassion, from one human being to another,” shares Agnelo of the community spirit fostered from within. It could be anything from time off to attend a family celebration or a child’s game to making a recommendation for somebody’s child to attend a particular college.
And that compassion extends to other practices at the resort. Sustainability leader Lauren Bergloff leads a Green Team of more than 40 ambassadors from different departments who implement eco-conscious efforts, including recycling and composting programs and encouraging reusable items instead of single-use plastic. In addition, they support initiatives like Coastal Cleanup Day, donate surplus foods to Chefs to End Hunger and redirect toiletries to Midnight Mission that would otherwise have been discarded.
“These programs started and continue to run because of Terranea associates’ passion to give back to both the community and the environment,” says Lauren. “I could not be more proud.”
In addition to balance, Terranea encourages associates to have fun and be themselves, knowing the best way to earn trust is through authenticity. “Your ability to approach and be approachable is very important to us,” says Agnelo. “Just be who you are. You are hired for a great reason, and that is because your DNA fits in with our values.”
“I get to be myself and carve my path at Terranea. Every associate has the power to make a difference at the resort regardless of the position they hold.”
Agnelo recalls a time when a chef prepared an Italian pastry for a guest who had arrived distressed from a series of canceled and delayed flights and transportation. The chef learned that she was from the same region in Italy where his grandmother was from and created a specialty that he hand-delivered to her.
“It’s these moments when an associate seeks to be extraordinary and doesn’t feel inhibited to ask for permission to create something off the menu,” says Agnelo. This event resulted in business with this client for the past eight years.
Encouraged to embrace individuality alongside teamwork, each and every Terranea associate offers something unique and extraordinary. Longtime falconer Joe Roy III continues to enchant guests with his gorgeous raptors, which also perform an important natural abatement purpose at the resort. Newcomer Navil Lorenzana brings her nutrition expertise to the food and beverage department, helping compose a healthy menu at the property’s newest dining venue, Solviva. Server Rosalinda Garcia, celebrating her 10th anniversary alongside the resort, still gets overwhelmed with happiness when greeted by the ocean each morning while taking a guest’s order. It’s personalized gestures and moments like these that encapsulate the spirit of Terranea Proud.
“I get to be myself and carve my path at Terranea,” says national sales manager Shane Phelan, who started as a bellman at Terranea in 2009. “Every associate has the power to make a difference at the resort regardless of the position they hold. Empowered and well-treated employees create a wonderful work environment, and that’s what we have at Terranea.
A destination unto itself.