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Redefining In-Flight Catering

Toronto Corporate Flight Attendant – Susan Sharpe

Toronto Corporate Flight Attendant Susan Sharpe

As we focus on Toronto, Ontario, Canada this week, we wanted to get an inside look at this capital city. When looking for the perfect candidate for this Canadian corporate flight attendant spotlight, hands down I was told to speak with Susan Sharpe. Read on to see why!

Which aircraft have you flown on during your career?

  • B-727, B-737, B-757
  • A310
  • CRJ 900/1000
  • Q400
  • CL 601/604/605 CL300
  • Global 5000/6000
  • G3 G200 G450
  • Falcon 900/2000
  • And, as of May 2015, the CSeries!

Where did you receive flight attendant training?

Bombardier Aerospace

When was your last recurrent?

November 2014

What is your base location?

I am based out of Toronto Pearson International Airport (YYZ / CYYZ).

How long have you been a flight attendant?

I started flying 19 years ago. I have four years’ experience in commercial and 15 in corporate aviation.

Which languages do you speak?

I am fluent in English and Portuguese.

What has been your most memorable flight?

I will never forget my first corporate flight; I was very excited. I couldn’t believe how amazing it felt to be working on such beautiful machinery.

Any career highlights you would like to share?

Yes, I have three moments that come to mind. I received the NBAA Scholarship Award in 2009, selected as demonstration flight attendant for Bombardier Aerospace and promoted to Corporate Inflight Service Trainer for Bombardier Aerospace Business Aircraft Customers and Flight Attendant Instructor for Bombardier Aerospace Business Aircraft.

What are your favorite destinations?

St. Marteen! Nothing beats Maho Beach having jets fly low above your head. What an exhilarating experience. London, England is another one of my favorite places. Having high tea at some of the finest hotels, like The Connaught, is a must when visiting London, and stocking up on every flight attendant essential at M&S.

What are your favorite types of cuisine?

I love all different kinds. I’m a bit of a foodie; always looking for up-and-coming new restaurants.

What are you favorite restaurants in Toronto?

There are so many excellent restaurants in Toronto to choose from.Some of my favorites are Salt, a hidden gem; Mildred’s, where you can get the best pancakes ever; and Ki Sushi. Located in the heart of the city, Harbour Sixty Steakhouse has the best sea bass I have ever eaten; it is pricey but worth every cent. On the other end of the price spectrum is Koja Restaurant, a casual setting in Liberty village. The sushi is so fresh and the flavors bright and consistent. They only use purple rice. You have to try the mountain roll – which is made of spicy salmon, avocado and cucumber, topped with more spicy salmon.I wish I had more time in my city to enjoy everything it has to offer.

What are some things to do that you would suggest for a corporate flight attendant visiting Toronto for the first time?

Toronto has many architectural landmarks that are a must-see:

  • The CN Tower – the best view in the city from up top.
  • Nathan Phillips Square – where you can outdoor ice skate.
  •  AGO – the Art Galley of Ontario.
  • The Eaton Centre – one stop shopping and dining under one roof.
  • The city has so much to offer; it’s just a matter of finding the time to do everything.

Any tips for a corporate flight attendant visiting Toronto for the first time?

Get out in the city and explore; there are so many great neighborhoods. All of these places are fantastic for picking up specialized items, flowers, groceries and wines:

  • Queen West – filled with hipsters, galleries, boutiques hotels and shops.
  • Kensington Market – eclectic shops, cafes and multicultural food selection.
  • St. Lawrence Market – filled with bakers, butchers, artisans and antiques.

The best mode of transportation as a tourist in the city is walking. Toronto is very pedestrian-friendly, or you can rent a bicycle in the warmer season.

What are some in-flight catering challenges you have experienced?

Dealing with various caterers is always a challenge in regards to language barriers, packaging, procuring specific ingredients and ensuring that your particular menu is what you have delivered.

How do you overcome these challenges?

I try to work with the caterer by providing recipes, pictures of presentation, detailed descriptions, measurements and even packaging if needed.

What made you decide to become a corporate flight attendant?

In transitioning from commercial flying to corporate, I wanted to be more engaged with the guests where I could provide 5-star service. I also wanted to travel the globe visiting more remote parts of the world.

What do you feel are essential skills for a successful corporate flight attendant?

Being highly organized, flexible and creative. Confidentiality is a must.

What advice would you give someone looking to become a corporate flight attendant?

Get properly trained and learn how to network. Also, it is important to be very aware of your social media footprint.

The next time you are looking for an experienced corporate flight attendant in Toronto, contact Susan Sharpe at susieqteixeira@hotmail.com.

This article is part of a series of interviews we are conducting with corporate cabin crew members. If you would like to be considered for an interview, which is posted on our blog and all of our social media accounts, please contact socialmedia@airculinaire.com.

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