800.798.7098   •   563.556.4200
200 Main Street   •   Dubuque, IA 52001

Archive: Aug 2015

  1. Meet the Team: Lara LeGrand

    With over 20 years of experience in the hospitality industry, it is clear that Director of Sales and Marketing Lara LeGrand has found her calling. Out of all the places her career has taken her throughout the years, though, she cites Hotel Julien Dubuque as her very favorite.  Read on to find out why…

    lara webHow long have you been with Hotel Julien Dubuque? “I started at Hotel Julien Dubuque in late January 2013.”
    What path brought you to Hotel Julien Dubuque? “My career in hospitality began in Galena, IL in 1995.  I held various positions, but concentrated mostly in the sales arena.  I consider Hotel Julien Dubuque to be the premier hotel in the region and was very excited when a position opened that worked within my skill-set.  I came on board as the Catering Manager in January 2013 and was given the opportunity to become the Director of Sales and Marketing in July of 2013.”
    What are you most passionate about professionally? “Most definitely the people we get to impact every single day!  It is such a source of pride that I get to be part of such a beautiful hotel, along with Potosa Spa, Caroline’s Restaurant and Riverboat Lounge.  People will forever be making lifelong memories here!”
    What are you passionate about personally? What is your favorite way to spend a free weekend? “Far and above anything else in my life, I am most passionate about my family.  I enjoy spending time with my husband, two children, and son-in-law. Additionally, I am lucky enough to have a tight group of friends that have really come to be extended family. My parents and brother live in Dubuque which makes staying close to them very easy and my sister and her family travel back to visit with us as often as possible.”
    What are some of your favorite things to do in the Dubuque area? “There are lots of things.  Here are my top five in no particular order: Eagle Point Park, Farmer’s Market, Fourth of July Fireworks (3rd of July actually), breakfast at Caroline’s Restaurant, and boat rides on the Mississippi with family and friends!”
    What do you love most about Hotel Julien Dubuque? “I think what I truly love the most is the impact that the restoration made on downtown Dubuque.  Hotel Julien has long been a staple of the city, but has seen its share of ‘dire’ times.  I believe that the hotel has led to the resurgance of downtown and continues to set the bar high for new restaurants, spas, and area attractions.  It makes me proud to be associated with a highly regarded business.”
    What is your personal motto? “I am very into quotes, so I will offer two.  Professionally my belief can be summed up with the following quote, ‘True leaders do not create followers, they create more leaders’.  The second would be my personal life’s motto: ‘Laugh when you can, apologize when you should, and let go of what you can’t change.’  I wrote that down when I was first married and stumbled across it again on Pinterest twenty years later.  It’s the perfect life motto (in my opinion).” 
    As a leader, what strategies do you implement to keep your team motivated and energized? 
    “Enthusiasm is infectious – it is my hope that my enthusiasm for what I do is so apparent that it proves to be motivating to my team.  I certainly make every effort to touch base with each member of the sales team every day and make myself available to them whenever they need my assistance.  Fundamentally, I believe that positive reinforcement is the ONLY way to motivate people – so I try to stay positive in all of my interactions with not only my team, but all of the HJD associates and managers.”

    Contact Lara via email at dos@hoteljuliendubuque.com or by phone at 563.588.5569.  


  2. Double Wedding Bells

    Sisters Sigrid and Kirsten Ulve celebrate the five year anniversary of their double wedding reception (held at Hotel Julien Dubuque on July 3rd, 2010) by sharing some of their favorite wedding day memories. Their joint wedding ceremony took place in the late afternoon at Dubuque’s Arboretum and Botanical Gardens.  Kirsten wed Kacy Ross, a radio host and producer from New Jersey.  They currently live in Manhattan where Kirsten oversees Kirsten Ulve Illustration. Younger sister Sigrid married her college sweetheart, Lyle Zaehringer, from Davenport, Iowa.  Both graduated from the University of Iowa and reside in the Quad Cities where Sigrid works as an attorney and Lyle as computer programmer.

    Kirsten reflects fondly on the special day, noting:

    “My sister Sigrid and I had a double wedding in Dubuque (where we both grew up) in the summer of 2010 on 4th of July weekend. Yes, there were fireworks! We were at the beginning stages of planning when we toured the newly renovated Julien, and the decision to have the festivities there was an easy one. I will never forget the four of us entering the ballroom for our reception dinner. As the doors opened, we were greeted by applause and the smiling faces of family and friends amid a sea white flowers and linens, the afternoon sunlight sparkling on the glassware. We had a disco band from Madison after dinner and danced with fireworks in the background over the river. Truly one of the happiest days of my life. Siggy lives in Davenport now, and I’m in New York City, but we cherish the memory of this fantastic day, and that it took place at the Julien.”

    Sigrid echoes her sister’s enthusiasm, writing:

    I have wonderful memories of my wedding day, which took place in my home town of Dubuque on a sunlit July 3, 2010. My sister and I, who are close as sisters can be, found ourselves engaged at the same time. So, with our dear husbands’ blessings, we planned a double wedding with the reception at Hotel Julien.

    We exchanged vows with our husbands in a lovely joint ceremony at the Arboretum before we ventured with our guests to the Julien for the reception. We walked up the grand staircase to greet the cheerful crowd on the mezzanine, at which time many of our guests expressed their admiration of the setting. After the guests were ushered into the ballroom, I will never forget the four of us coming through the doors to find the room filled with pastel flowers, white linens, soft lighting, and the cheers of our loved ones. The scene could not have been more beautiful.

    Other things of note: I remember how helpful the staff were in assisting us plan the event. I remember my sister and I each “hiding” from the grooms upstairs in the hotel rooms before hopping in the limousine to meet them at the ceremony site. We danced to live music while the fireworks erupted over the Mississippi. At the end of the evening, our guests gathered on the terrace outside and enjoyed the warm night air together.

    It was a perfect day, and Hotel Julien was the perfect choice.”

    In celebration of our 100th anniversary, we are looking back at the significant events that have taken place at Hotel Julien Dubuque throughout history. If you were married at the hotel (pre or post-renovation), we would love to hear your story!  Learn more about our “Celebrating Ours, Celebrating Yours” contest and how you can enter here.