Meet This Girl Caroline Fournigault
On getting her start in hospitality
I come from a big family - we love to all gather together for holidays and birthdays and I have always loved celebrations.
I knew I wanted to work in hospitality because I love to entertain and please my guests by offering them the best experiences. So after I got my bachelors degree, I went to Vatel and studied Management and Hospitality. I actually have two MBAs, I got my first one in France, and then I wanted to come to Los Angeles, so I said ok, let’s do another MBA, you know, why not?
On her career pivot
I worked at L'Ermitage in Beverly Hills in the housekeeping department as a Supervisor and Coordinator when I first came to Los Angeles. I worked with amazing people and I just fell in love with the city of Los Angeles. I then moved around to Miami and New York and worked for a couple different companies, because at the time I wanted to be a Hotel Manager. I then realized that as much I loved hospitality, I loved being in Los Angeles more.
A friend of mine who was the General Manager at Ladurée in New York got me an interview to work for Ladurée in Los Angeles before any of the locations were actually open here - the Beverly Hills location was under construction at the time. So I did the interview and got the job and that was the start of this really intense and amazing experience.
I started working for Ladurée as an Office Manager, and then when they were looking for an Events Manager, they said: “Caroline, you are going to do it” and I was like sure!
I take care of all the events held at Ladurée in Los Angeles - the baby showers, wedding showers, birthday parties - all that. I am the one connecting with guests, setting up the venue, decorating, going through all those details - I’m the point person for events at both the Beverly Hills and The Grove Ladurée locations.
On the best part of her job
The best part of my job is that I am always on the go, moving around and meeting incredible new people. To be good at this job you need to be personable, self-disciplined and you have to like having a lot of responsibility on you - which I do. I love responsibility!
On staying the course
For seven years I worked all around. I was in New York and Miami, but I always knew that I wanted to come back to Los Angeles, it was just a matter of waiting for the right opportunity. All these experiences taught me that while it can be hard to be patient and trust the process, somethings you just cannot rush.
On the rule she tries to live by
Dream big is my motto. My father actually instilled that in me. He and I are the same. He always told me when I was little that I should go for my dreams and that he would always be there to support me. I was also very fortunate to have a former boss at the Sofitel that has served as a tremendous mentor to me. He trusted me and put me in big meetings and always showed confidence in me. The men in my life were the ones who were always taking me under their wing. Now, I want to shine bright with women.
On realizing that she’s exactly where she has always wanted to be
Meditation is my thing. I got into it this year. I was looking for a healthier way to channel everything, and meditation is it for me. Meditating enables me to stay grounded and it just makes me happier. You know, I live in Los Angeles - this is the City of Angels, and I feel like I am meant to be here. Right now, my biggest thing is to just be grateful for everything I have and to remind myself that anything is possible.
On the women she finds inspiring
My mother inspires me of course, just the way she is. She’s so kind to everyone - too kind sometimes I think. I also find inspiration from the women I work with and my friends. I think that everyone has good things to offer.
On where you can find her in five years
I will be running my world five years from now! It would also be nice to have a house in the Hills and a house in Malibu. Truly, I want to do so much more. I hope to develop myself even further, and perhaps even open up my own business.
On wanting to study gemology
I love to learn - I want to learn everything! I think we should keep learning all life long. I actually want to study gemology - I want to learn about stones. I find them so interesting. It’s amazing how different stones carry different kinds of energies.
On the three traits she’s most proud to possess
When I want something, I put things in motion and actually do what needs to be done in order to make things happen. You can’t do anything in life if you just say it and don’t take action. I’d also say I’m proud of my commitment and my compassion - I just want to make other people feel good about themselves.
On the best advice she ever received
The best advice I ever got was to just trust myself and go for it. Also, not to question too many things.
On her girl crush
I love Jessica Alba. I’d love to get to know her. She’s beautiful and strong and smart and stable. She has her family, her amazing company - Honest Company, she has it all!
Her advice to a girl on her way
Trust yourself. Put yourself first. Don’t chase too many boys. Boys, they come and go. Just believe in yourself and make it happen.