Utah Tech, Black Desert Resort begin partnership for hotel and resort management

A receptionist makes an online reservation on a computer while standing at reception, date not specified | Photo courtesy of Black Desert Resort, St. George News

ST. GEORGE — Black Desert Resort in Ivins has announced a new partnership with Utah Tech University’s Hotel and Resort Management program, aiming to redefine excellence in the region’s hospitality sector.

Photo shows the greens at Black Desert Resort on a sunny day, date not specified | Photo courtesy Black Desert Resort, St. George News

While the partnership will see Utah Tech graduates streamlined into job opportunities, Patrick Manning, managing partner of Black Desert, told St. George News the collaboration was more than a way to maintain his workforce.

“It’s about enriching our community with skilled professionals ready to elevate the guest experience to new heights,” he said.

Saeed Vayghan, assistant professor of hotel and resort management at Utah Tech, said graduates will have an advantage due to the proximity of Black Desert Resort to the university’s campus in St. George.

“Students can’t often find these kinds of chances,” Vayghan said. “They’d have to travel up north to find opportunities in resorts, but Black Desert Resort is only 15 minutes away.”

Black Desert Resort is hiring its first round of applicants now. This initial hiring phase is searching for candidates to fill many different roles, including jobs in the rooms division, which includes housekeeping, front-of-house, back-of-house, as well as management, Vayghan said.

Vayghan added he is ready to supply the demand.

“Our current curriculum has a very strong foundation of business courses,” Vayghan said. “Our students will gain a very strong foundation for management and business.”

A receptionist makes an online reservation on a computer while standing at reception, date not specified | Photo courtesy of Black Desert Resort, St. George News

Manning said the opportunity to work with a prestigious institution like Utah Tech solidifies their dream of making something exceptional in the heart of Utah and that they are leaving behind a legacy of education, empowerment and employment.

“This is more than a partnership; it’s a milestone that signifies our commitment to setting new standards in the hospitality industry and contributing to the community in a meaningful way,” he said.

He stressed that the thought of Black Desert Resort potentially being the premier destination for hospitality career opportunities in Southern Utah excites everyone involved.

“Black Desert Resort is set to bring hundreds of thousands of people to Utah, and our partnership with Utah Tech University ensures they will be met with world-class service,” he said.

Vayghan said they project about 30 students will be enrolled in the program for the fall semester.

“It’s a great start,” he said.

Black Desert Resort and Trailblazers officials have joined forces before. The resort sponsors a scholarship and the university’s Fire and Ice Gala.

Crimson Cliffs alum Zac Felts adjusts the golf ball before putting during a match in spring 2023, location not specified | Photo courtesy of Stan Plewe, Utah Tech Media Relations, St. George News

The resort also allows Utah Tech’s women’s and men’s golf teams exclusive access to their practice facility and serves as the home turf golf course for Utah Tech.

Black Desert Resort is still under construction. Once it’s completed, the resort is expected to feature more than 3,000 hotel rooms, a music venue, extensive trails winding through historic lava fields and an aquatic park, among many other amenities.

The 19-hole golf course opened in May 2023 and includes a 36-hole putting green, suitable for daytime use and lit up for nighttime.

The resort’s 19th Hole is designed like an amphitheater, amid a backdrop of black lava.

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2024, all rights reserved.

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