Everything All the Time
It’s been pretty hectic these days for Zoe Lubrano.
“There’s lots of background things that I’m doing like ordering spare parts, listing equipment, initial ordering of all the supplies, all the things for the kitchens, recruitment.” With the back-to-back launch of two new aparthotels, Church Street and The Chronicle, it never really stops.
“I’ve never experienced anything like this.”
And since she’s been with Supercity since almost the beginning—at the time it was just “me and two others”—that declaration accounts for a lot. As Executive Assistant to the CEO, Zoe works across the board. “I’ll tell you my favourite part and my least favourite part- it’s being involved in everything.”
It’s great because it means her job is always changing, spontaneous, and full of learning experiences. She played a part in all stages of the new properties’ development, from planning and zoning to the pre-opening particulars like ordering all the supplies for each room. “You get to see a lot more behind the scenes, of what really goes into building.”
And that learning goes outside of the office too – when she and her partner were renovating their home, Zoe wowed him with all the expertise she brought to the project. “I knew all these regulations, how to set up tiles, kitchens… I learned a lot that I could use in my personal life.” And that was three years ago, long before work on the new properties – if they renovated now, she’d be able to go even farther. “It’s quite intense… you get a lot of insight into it.”
But doing a little bit of everything quickly turns stressful, and that can mean taking the wrong kind of work home, too. “I can’t shut off from work and sometimes at home I’ll remember, oh I haven’t done this done that, and I can’t let it go.” When things get too stressful, she has breathing exercises, reality TV, and a partner who—for his part—never talks about work, to help calm her down.
She also has her personal development books. “They help you see more about yourself, like understand the world and people a bit more – my reaction to things.” Reading them helped her learn that “I’m quite highly strung,” and how to be more aware of the world around her. “You can’t control what other people do. You recognise that no one’s going see things exactly the same way, and to kind-of not take everything so personally.”
In May, reading Gabrielle Bernstein’s A 40 Day Guidebook had a particularly powerful impact on her mindset – it was so powerful, she bought a necklace as a reminder to “keep seeing things with love.” It’s helped a lot, but keeping it up is a challenge. “On the whole it probably has changed me, it went really well for the first month or so but it’s kind of been diluted as life goes on.”
So what are the biggest obstacles to leading this mindfulness? “Living a London life.” Making the hour-plus commute from Essex, getting squeezed in on the train “when people keep pushing in and there’s no more room,” is always the biggest test.
That being said, she loves London. Having grown up in Shepherd’s Bush, the city’s always been home– “I love the diversity, the shopping, there’s just so much you can do here.” Especially the food, which for a committed foodie like Zoe, that’s a big deal. She’d consider moving to LA because of the weather and better range of healthy food options, but nowhere else holds a candle to her city.
The More That Changes, the More Stays the Same
Like with her necklace, Zoe sees a lot of meaning in the jewels people wear. “If you’re investing in fine jewellery it has a meaning to you, and you buy it for a reason, you buy it for the emotions they connect to.” One day, she’d love to open up her own store selling the kind of jewellery that “lasts forever, [that] you can pass down to your children.”
And where will Supercity be? “I would say we may have doubled again. Our Christmas parties will be really exciting,” she adds, laughing.
That being said, it might not change Supercity’s uniqueness. In the past six years, “it actually hasn’t changed which is so weird, the only thing that’s changes is just that there’s more people.” The way company’s run, the way the owners are, “that hasn’t changed, it’s just that back then there were five people and now there’s fifty-eight.”
Bring on the new.